TOKYO, July 1 (Reuters) - Confidence at big Japanese manufacturers has worsened to its lowest level in nearly three years, the central bank's "tankan" survey showed on Monday, in a sign the U.S.-China trade war and global slowdown were hurting Japan's export-reliant economy.
The headline index for big manufacturers' sentiment stood at plus 7 in June, versus plus 12 in March, the closely watched quarterly survey by the Bank of Japan showed. The median estimate of economists was for plus 9 in a Reuters poll.
It was the lowest reading since September 2016 when it was at plus six.
The index is seen holding steady at plus 7 over the next three months.
The survey also showed big firms plan to raise their capital expenditure by 7.4% in the financial year to March 2020, versus economists' median estimate of an 8.9% increase.
The tankan's sentiment indexes are derived by subtracting the number of respondents who say conditions are poor from those who say they are good. A positive reading means optimists outnumber pessimists.
For the POLL story on the survey:
Survey results on the BOJ's website: https://www.boj.or.jp/en/statistics/tk/gaiyo/2016/tka1906.pdf
(Reporting by Leika Kihara and Tetsushi Kajimoto Editing by Chris Gallagher)