Mount Fuji, Japan

Japan Trade March 2018

Japan: Strong yens continues to put a lid on export growth in March

Nominal yen-denominated merchandise exports increased 2.1% year-on-year in March, accelerating timidly from February’s 1.8% rise. March’s print came in below market expectations of a 5.2% increase as a strong yen continues to erode the competitiveness of Japan’s external sector. Exports in March benefited from stronger shipments of machinery, manufactured goods and electrical machinery, in that order.

In March, imports contracted for the first time in 15 months, falling 0.6% year-on-year. The print contrasted the 16.6% rise in February and market expectations of a 6.3% increase. The decline mostly reflected seasonal distortions related to the Lunar New Year holidays and was driven by lower purchases of electrical machinery and foodstuff.

As a result of the contraction in imports, the merchandise trade balance rose from a null figure in February to a JPY 797 billion surplus in March. Meanwhile, the 12-month trailing trade surplus rose to JPY 2.5 trillion in March, up from the JPY 2.3 trillion surplus recorded in the previous month.

Free sample report

Access essential information in the shortest time possible. FocusEconomics provide hundreds of consensus forecast reports from the most reputable economic research authorities in the world.
Close Left Media Arrows Left Media Circles Right Media Arrows Right Media Circles Arrow Quote Wave Address Email Telephone Man in front of screen with line chart Document with bar chart and magnifying glass Application window with bar chart Target with arrow Line Chart Stopwatch Globe with arrows Document with bar chart in front of screen Bar chart with magnifying glass and dollar sign Lightbulb Document with bookmark Laptop with download icon Calendar Icon Nav Menu Arrow Arrow Right Long Icon Arrow Right Icon Chevron Right Icon Chevron Left Icon Briefcase Icon Linkedin In Icon Full Linkedin Icon Filter Facebook Linkedin Twitter Pinterest