Fitting with the theme seen from their regional neighbours, Japanese international trade figures for September came in weak, particularly the annual growth rate in exports.
According to Japan’s Ministry of Finance, exports grew by just 0.6% in the 12 months to September, undershooting expectations for an increase of 3.4%. The figure, a deceleration from the 3.1% pace of August, marketed the weakest annual expansion since August 2014.
On the other side of the ledger, imports slid by 11.1% compared to a year earlier, a sharp acceleration on the 3.1% decline reported in August. Although a steep drop, it beat the median market forecast for a contraction of 11.7%.
With export growth slowing sharply and imports marginally beating expectations, the trade deficit narrowed to 114.5 billion yen.
Markets has been expecting a surplus of 84.4 billion yen following a deficit of 569.7 billion yen in August. Compared to a year earlier, the deficit was significantly narrower than the 962 billion yen figure of September 2014.