Japan Records Trade Deficit in January


Japan saw a merchandise trade deficit of 471.4 billion yen in January, the Ministry of Finance said on February 23, falling into the red for the first time in 22 months.

Japan had a trade surplus of 260.236 billion yen with all of Asia, down 52.8 percent on year. Japan posted a trade deficit of 303.339 billion yen with China, up an annual 131.0 percent.

The trade surplus with the United States was 288.128 billion yen, up an annual 21.7 percent, while the surplus with the European Union was 63.189 billion yen, down 31.3 percent on year.

Exports were much weaker than expected, rising just 1.4 percent on year to 4.971 trillion yen - well shy of expectations for a 7.4 percent increase following the downwardly revised 12.9 percent gain a month earlier.

Exports to Asia rose just 0.4 percent on year to 2.729 trillion yen, but still climbing for the 15th consecutive month. Exports to China alone rose just 1.0 percent on year to 928.826 billion yen, but still also rising for the 15th straight month.

Exports to the United States rose an annual 6.0 percent to 752.902 billion yen, rising for the 13th straight month. Exports to the European Union declined 0.7 percent on year to 575.899 billion yen, contracting for the first time in three months.

Imports came in much higher than expected, rising for the 13th straight month to 12.4 percent on year to 5.442 trillion yen versus forecasts for an 8.1 percent rise following the 10.6 percent gain in the previous month.

Imports from Asia rose 14.0 percent on year to 2.469 trillion yen, while imports from China alone climbed an annual 17.2 percent to 1.232 trillion yen.

Imports from the United States eased an annual 1.9 percent to 464.774 billion yen, while imports from the European Union collected 5.0 percent on year to 512.710 billion yen.


TradingEconomics.com, RTT News
2/24/2011 11:39:38 AM