Japan's industrial output fell in July for the first time in two months, as the global shortage of semiconductors and the coronavirus pandemic took a toll on a range of sectors.
Industry ministry officials say output slipped 1.5 percent from the previous month.
Nine out of 15 sectors saw a downturn. Among the products that suffered a significant impact were automobiles and lithium-ion batteries. These were hit hard by the chip shortage and the strain on supply chains in Asian economies due to the pandemic.
But officials say they believe factory production is set to rebound. They project an increase of 3.4 percent in August, and 1 percent in September.
They expect a rise in industries such as chemicals and production machinery, including equipment for making semiconductors.