TOKYO - Japan’s average household spending in 2023 dropped a real 2.6 percent from the previous year, marking the first decline in three years as families curbed expenditures on food and education amid rising prices, government data showed Tuesday. Households of two or more people spent a monthly average of 293,997 yen (2,000 U.S. dollars) last year, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications said.
By items, spending on food, which accounts for about 30 percent of household expenditures, fell 2.2 percent, while spending on household goods was down 7.4 percent. Expenditures on education plunged 9.8 percent, as households switched children from cram schools to comparatively affordable online courses, a ministry official said. Meanwhile, outlays on entertainment expanded 3.4 percent, as more people went out following the removal of coronavirus restrictions.