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The cumulative number of corporate bankruptcies due to the impacts of the novel coronavirus epidemic reached 600 in Japan on Wednesday, Tokyo Shoko Research Ltd. said.

The pace of growth in business failures has been accelerating since last month, the credit research firm noted.

While companies have been supported by funding measures from the government, those with poor financial standings are going bust in the face of the prolonged impact of the epidemic, a Tokyo Shoko Research official said.

Of the total, the number of coronavirus-linked bankruptcies with debts of ¥10 million or more totaled 571.

The number of such bankruptcies stood at 103 in June, 80 in July, 67 in August and 100 in September.

By industry, the restaurant sector was hit hardest by the virus crisis with 90 bankruptcies, followed by the apparel sector with 63 and the lodging industry with 50.

“Bankruptcies may grow at year-end, when demand for funds expands,” the official warned.

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