The figure released Friday was an improvement over an earlier estimate for 1.4 percent growth in the final quarter of 2018.
It also showed a rebound from a 2.4 percent contraction in the previous quarter for the world’s third-largest economy as storms and earthquakes crimped travel and spending.
On a quarterly basis, Japan’s economy grew 0.5 percent in October-December.
Economists say slowing growth in China and weakening demand elsewhere are raising risks for a downturn in the coming months. The latest data show lower government spending also is hurting growth.