Japan: Used car sales up 12.2pct in May image

Used car sales in Japan rose 12.2 percent on the year in May to 324,865 vehicles, the Japan Automobile Dealers Association said Tuesday.

On the same time, sales in Japan of new vehicles in May surged 66.4 percent from a year earlier to 394,950 vehicles on the back of government subsidies and tax breaks for the purchase of eco-friendly cars, according to the Japan Automobile Dealers Association and the Japan Mini Vehicles Association.

Commercial vehicles were also strong in May with monthly total new commercial vehicle sales up 17 per cent to 2,364 and up 4 per cent on the start of 2011.

Japanese consumer sentiment in May rose from last month, reflecting brisk sales of cars, according to the Cabinet Office on Monday.

The confidence index for households made up of two or more people rose to 40.7 from 40.0 in April, for the first rise in two months. Readings below 50 indicate pessimism surpassing optimism.