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June 20, 2011    

Japan’s exports down 10.3% on year

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by Kay Mitchell
”Japan's

Official figures today revealed a slump in Japan’s exports in May – the third consecutive monthly fall.

Exports dived 10.3% on an annual basis to 4.76 trillion yen, according to the finance ministry – far more than the 8.4% fall expected by analysts.

The earthquake and tsunami in March disrupted supply chains and forced some of Japan’s largest exporters to halt production.

Carmakers saw exports dive 38.9% last month compared with a year ago – albeit, this was lower than the 67% drop noted in April.

In the meantime, imports have improved, increasing 12.3% last month to 5.61 trillion yen compared with a year ago.

As a result, the trade deficit came in at 853.7 billion yen (£6.6 billion) – the second largest trade deficit after the 967.9 billion yen in January 2009.

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