Japan posted a merchandise trade deficit of 907.25 billion yen in May, the Ministry of Finance said on Wednesday - slipping into the red for the seventh time in eight months.
The headline figure was well shy of forecasts for a deficit of 583.0 billion yen following the downwardly revised 522.0 billion yen shortfall in April.
Exports jumped 10.0 percent on year to 5.234 trillion yen, beating forecasts for an increase of 9.7 percent after rising 7.9 percent in the previous month. It also marked the third straight monthly gain following five consecutive months of loss.
Exports to all of Asia added 4.5 percent on year to 2.881 trillion yen, while exports to China alone climbed an annual 3.0 percent to 966.176 billion yen.
Exports to the United States surged 38.2 percent on year to 891.408 billion yen, while exports to the European Union declined an annual 0.9 percent to 556.390 billion yen.
Imports climbed an annual 9.3 percent to 6.141 trillion yen, rising for the 29th consecutive month. That compares to forecasts for a rise of 3.3 percent after climbing 8.0 percent a month earlier.
Imports from Asia surged 10.7 percent on year to 2.715 trillion yen, while imports from China alone added an annual 10.0 percent to 1.268 trillion yen.
Imports from the United States were up 2.8 percent on year to 557.031 billion yen, while imports from the European Union climbed 5.9 percent to 567.527 billion yen.
The adjusted trade deficit came in at 657.2 billion yen, missing forecasts for a shortfall of 347.7 billion yen following the downwardly revised 512.0 billion yen deficit in April.
by RTT Staff Writer
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