Japan: Exports decrease at slower pace in June
July 20, 2020
Yen-denominated merchandise exports shrank 26.2% in annual terms in June, on the heels of May’s 28.3% plunge. Meanwhile, imports dived 14.4% over the same month last year in June (May: -26.2% yoy). As a result, the merchandise trade balance deficit shrank to JPY 0.3 trillion in June, which was narrower than the JPY 0.8 trillion shortfall in May but markedly below the JPY 0.6 trillion surplus recorded in June 2019. Lastly, the trend deteriorated, with the 12-month trailing merchandise trade balance recording a JPY 3.0 trillion deficit in June, compared to JPY 2.2 trillion deficit in May.Our panelists forecast that exports will decrease 21.5% in 2020 and imports will decrease 18.2%, bringing the trade balance to a deficit of USD 21.7 billion. In 2021, our panelists expect exports to expand 9.1% and imports to expand 7.5%, prompting the trade balance to log a deficit of USD 15.0 billion.
Author: Stephen Vogado, Economist