• Kyodo

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Corporate profits in Japan were down for the first time in 2½ years in the fourth quarter of 2018 amid falling demand from China and rising costs, government data showed Friday.

Pretax profits fell 7.0 percent in the October-December period from a year earlier to total ¥19.48 trillion. The first decline since the second quarter of 2016 indicated that growth in the world’s third-largest economy may be gearing down.

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