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TOKYO, Oct 1 (Reuters) - Big Japanese manufacturers' sentiment worsened in the third quarter from the previous quarter, a closely watched Bank of Japan survey showed, hurt by a steady deterioration in export demand as Europe's debt crisis simmers and China's economy slows.
The headline index for big manufacturers' sentiment was minus 3 in September, down from minus 1 in June and matching the median forecast of economists, the quarterly tankan survey showed on Monday.
Big manufacturers expect conditions to hold steady over the next three months, with the index for December seen at minus 3, compared with a median forecast of minus 5.
The survey also showed big firms plan to raise their capital spending by 6.4 percent in the financial year to next March, compared with a median forecast for a 5.5 percent increase.
The sentiment indexes are derived by subtracting the percentage of respondents who say conditions are poor from those who say they are good. A negative reading means pessimists outnumbered optimists.