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Japan Core Machine Orders Surge In November

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Core machine orders in Japan jumped a seasonally adjusted 9.3 percent on month in November, the Cabinet Office said on Thursday - coming in at 882.6 billion yen.

The headline figure shattered forecasts for an increase of 1.1 percent following the 0.6 percent gain in October.

On a yearly basis, core machine orders climbed 16.6 percent - also topping expectations for a jump of 11.7 percent following the 17.8 percent spike in the previous month.

The total number of machinery orders, including those volatile ones for ships and from electric power companies, shed 5.8 percent on month and gained 8.9 percent on year in November to 2,157.3 billion yen.

Manufacturing orders added 6.0 percent on month and 18.9 percent on year to 353.7 billion yen in November, while non-manufacturing orders jumped 8.1 percent on month and 15.1 percent on year to 550.6 billion yen.

Government orders plummeted 11.9 percent on month and climbed 8.8 percent on year to 248.6 billion yen. Orders from overseas dropped 12.2 percent on month and gained 1.3 percent on year to 775.0 billion yen. Orders from agencies dipped 5.5 percent on month but gained 11.9 percent on year to 99.6 billion yen.

For the fourth quarter of 2013, core machine orders are forecast to have fallen 2.1 percent on quarter and added 11.9 percent on year to 2,348.1 billion yen.

Also on Thursday:

• The Bank of Japan said that an index tracking the prices of domestic corporate goods was up 0.3 percent on month in December, standing at 102.8. That matched forecasts following the downwardly revised flat reading in November (originally 0.1 percent).

On a yearly basis, prices were up 2.5 percent, missing expectations for 2.6 percent - which was unchanged from the previous month following a downward revision from 2.7 percent.

Export prices were down 0.1 percent on month and 1.8 percent on year, the data showed, while import prices gained 0.6 percent on month and 0.2 percent on year.

• The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry said that an index measuring tertiary industry activity in Japan was up a seasonally adjusted 0.6 percent on month in November, coming in at 100.1.

That missed forecasts for an increase of 0.7 percent following the downwardly revised 0.9 percent contraction in October (originally -0.7 percent).

Industries that saw activity increase included retail trade, finance, accommodations, real estate and health care.

Industries that saw activity decline included technical services, communications and utilities.

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