Japan Trade Balance April 2020


Japan: Exports fall at fastest pace in over a decade in April

May 21, 2020

Yen-denominated merchandise exports dropped 21.9% year-on-year in April after falling 11.7% in March, largely due to lower machinery and transport equipment shipments as foreign demand evaporated. The reading marked the sharpest decline since October 2009. Imports fell 7.2% in April, after falling 5.0% in March.

The merchandise trade balance was negative JPY 0.9 trillion in April, contrasting the neutral reading in March and the JPY 0.1 trillion surplus in April 2019. The 12-month trailing trade deficit widened to JPY 2.3 trillion in April from JPY 1.3 trillion in March.

Our panelists forecast that exports will decrease 17.3% in 2020 and imports will decrease 10.8%, bringing the trade balance to a deficit of USD 43.0 billion. In 2021, our panelists expect exports to expand 11.4% and imports to expand 8.7%, prompting the trade balance to log a deficit of USD 31.2 billion.

Author:, Economist

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Japan Trade Balance Chart

Japan Trade12m April 20 20

Note: 12-month sum of trade balance in USD billion and annual variation of the 12-month sum of exports and imports in %.
Source: Ministry of Finance and FocusEconomics calculations.

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