The cumulative number of business failures in Japan triggered by the coronavirus pandemic came to 1,026 between January and August, Tokyo Shoko Research Ltd. said Wednesday.

Bankruptcies in the restaurant industry, hit hard by the crisis, numbered 204, accounting for about 20% of the total, according to data covering business failures with debts of ¥10 million or more.

In August alone, the number of coronavirus-linked business failures totaled 121.

The overall number of bankruptcies in August fell 30.1% from a year before to 466, reflecting the government’s financing support and other relief measures for businesses affected by the coronavirus fallout.

The sum was lowest for the month since August 1964, which had 372 business failures.

Meanwhile, the number of corporate failures leaving liabilities of ¥1 billion or more rose to 25 from 13 a year earlier.

“Some companies may become cash-strapped with sales remaining sluggish amid the prolonged virus crisis,” a Tokyo Shoko Research official said.

The official forecast that more and more companies may lose the strength to go on and file for bankruptcy.

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