Japan: Exports rocket in April
Yen-denominated merchandise exports jumped 38.0% on an annual basis in April, on the heels of March’s 16.1% upturn. April’s result marked the strongest increase in 11 years, although it was helped by a healthy base effect, with April 2020 having coincided with a sharp pandemic-induced decline in trade volumes. Meanwhile, imports soared 12.8% on an annual basis in April (March: +5.8% yoy), marking the best result since October 2018.
As a result, the merchandise trade balance fell to a JPY 0.3 trillion surplus in April (March 2021: JPY 0.7 trillion surplus; April 2020: JPY 1.0 trillion deficit). Lastly, the trend improved, with the 12-month trailing merchandise trade balance recording a JPY 2.5 trillion surplus in April, compared to the JPY 1.3 trillion surplus in March.