11 January 2013 02:40 [Source: ICIS news]
SINGAPORE (ICIS)--Japan’s current account swung to a deficit of yen (Y) 222.4bn ($2.52bn) in November last year, the first shortfall in 10 months, weighed by a fall in exports and as imports increased, official data showed on Friday.
The country’s exports fell by 4.2% year on year to Y4,779bn in November, while imports edged 0.8% higher to Y5,626bn, the Ministry of Finance (MOF) said.
This resulted in a trade deficit of Y847bn, a sharp drop from the Y450bn deficit a month earlier.
The current account measures a country’s trade in goods, services, tourism and investment with the rest of the world.
Japan’s export growth is likely to remain moderate this year, according to Singapore-based DBS Group Research.
“On the other hand, import growth would remain relatively strong this year, given the increase in government spending to boost domestic demand, and the elevated dependence on fuel imports to substitute nuclear power,” the firm said.
“Overall, we expect the current account to register a small surplus equivalent to 1.5% of GDP this year, improving from 1.3% in 2012, but still much lower than the 3% average level in 2000-2011,” it added.
($1 = Y88.2)
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