TOKYO: The Bank of Japan's highly respected Tankan business survey shows confidence in the country dipped amid worries about economic equilibrium in the USA.

The quarterly survey, which asks 10,000 Japanese firms about current trends and conditions and expectations for the future, indicated that confidence among large manufacturers slipped to 23 points in March from 25 in December, the first drop in a year.

Analysts say the figures point to a lower level of economic growth in the first quarter of 2007 but overall they believe the domestic economy is still in a healthy state. The central bank raised interest rates to 0.5% in February, a sign of its confidence in the recovery.

Data sourced from BBC Online; additional content by WARC staff