Japanese seasonally adjusted trade surplus slips in May

Alexander Bueso Sharecast | 19 Jun, 2017 09:43 - Updated: 09:43 | | |


Japanese exports and imports failed to rebound in May, suggesting that foreign demand acted as a drag on the broader economy during the second quarter, but some economists were nevertheless optimistic.

In non-seasonally adjusted terms, exports grew by 14.9% year-on-year (consensus: 16.0%) to reach 5.85trn yen while imports were up by 17.8% to 6.05trn yen, according to the Japanese Ministry of Finance.

The result was an 329.6% increase in the country's trade surplus versus the year-ago period to reach 203.4bn yen.

During the month of April the value of exports had grown 7.5% and that of imports by 15.2%.

Strength in exports was mainly the result of increased volumes, which accelerated from a 4.1% year-on-year pace in April to 7.5% for May, according to Marcel Thieliant at Capital Economics.

Import volumes were up by 5.4% in parallel, their best showing since January, he said, "[which] suggests that domestic demand is picking up".

Upon seasonal adjustment on the other hand, exports were flat versus April and imports just 0.3% ahead. Hence, the seasonally-adjusted trade surplus slipped from 158bn yen to 134bn yen.

"Today’s data indicate that trade volumes were little changed in May, which suggests that net exports turned into a drag on GDP growth in the second quarter.

"Nonetheless, "new export orders" in the manufacturing PMI remains consistent with double-digit y/y-gains in export volumes. We reiterate our forecast that net exports will contribute 0.5 percentage points to 2017 GDP growth."

More news

22 Aug US close: Stocks rise amid tax reform optimism

US stocks ended in the black on Tuesday amid reports of progress on tax reform on Capitol Hill.

22 Aug Europe close: Stocks jump on positive news from the States

Stocks recouped their losses from the previous day on the back of positive newsflow around the White House's tax reform efforts, alongside a dip in the single currency's value as investors bide their time ahead of the start of the US central bank's annual Jackson Hole symposium on Thursday.

22 Aug London close: Stocks jump on US optimism, weaker pound

Shares finished the session higher, after a report stoked optimism that the White House might be making headway in its tax reform efforts and helped along by well-received results from the likes of Persimmon and BHP Billiton, although subprime lender Provident Financial nosedived after another profit warning.

21 Aug MBL Group rockets, says sales process under way

AIM-listed home entertainment, garden and leisure company MBL Group announced on Monday that although its garden and home division reported a 1,600% increase in operating profits, the group still posted a £158,000 after-tax loss.

22 Aug US open: Stocks snap higher on tax reform optimism

Wall Street was bouncing back in early trading, goaded by reports of progress on tax reform on Capitol Hill.

22 Aug Frontera Resources progressing with Block 12 in Georgia

Europe-focussed independent oil and Frontera Resources updated the market on its operations related to ongoing work at Block 12 in Georgia on Tuesday.

22 Aug Frutarom gobbles up Swiss flavour makers Mühlehof Gewürze

Frutarom Industries announced on Monday it had signed an agreement that would see them acquire 100% of Swiss company Mühlehof Gewürze.

22 Aug Atos finalises reseller agreement with Dell

Digital transformation specialists, Atos announced on Tuesday that it had taken steps to further strengthen its relationship with Dell EMC by way of a reseller agreement that would see Dell resell Atos's high-end 8 to 16 sockets x86 Bullion servers.

22 Aug Nostra Terra updates market on Pine Mills situation

Oil and gas exploration and production company Nostra Terra updated the market on its progress to secure the remaining 12.5% stake in the Pine Mills oil field through a non-appealable court judgement against Hammerhead Management Partners on Tuesday.

22 Aug Wednesday preview: WPP results under spotlight, while eurozone and US PMI eyed

Wednesday offers a slight lull in the week, but there is still a barrage of services and manufacturing purchasing managers' index surveys across Europe and from the US, plus results from WPP and Premier Oil.