Analysts in Japan say the country's economy likely expanded in the October-to-December period, marking the first growth in 3 quarters.
Ten private research firms and financial institutions in Japan released their estimates. They say the country's GDP grew between 0.5 to 1.2 percent in real terms in the final quarter of 2014, compared with the previous 3 months, Japan's (NHK World) reported.
The figures translate to annualized growth of between 1.9 percent to 4.8 percent. That would be a rebound from a contraction of 1.9 percent in the July-to-September quarter.
Analysts say consumer spending picked up as the impact of the consumption tax hike last April eased. They also cited higher winter bonuses as a positive factor.
The analysts say many firms used bigger profits to reinvest in their businesses. They also say the weaker yen boosted exports to the US and the rest of Asia.
The Japanese government will release official GDP figures later in the month.