Japan Imports Surge over 40% in September as Yen Falls

Japan posted a trade deficit of 2 trillion yen ($13.3 billion) in September, as imports rose by more than 40% for the fifth consecutive month, reaching the highest figure on record as the yen continued to lose its value.

The surge in imports outpaced growth in exports, extending the run of deficits to 14 months, putting further downward pressure on the Japanese yen.

Ministry of Finance (MOF) data showed that Japan’s trade deficit for the fiscal first half to end-September increased to a record 11 trillion yen, primarily due to rising fuel costs and a 20% depreciation in the yen against the dollar during the time.

Continuous deficits deteriorate Japan’s trade terms, forcing a shift of domestic income overseas and eroding Japanese purchasing power.

According to MOF data, Japan’s imports rose 45.9% year on year in September, led by crude oil, liquefied natural gas, and coal, almost matching the median expectation of economists.

Exports increased 28.9% in September compared to the same month last year, led by automobile shipments to the United States and South Korean demand for chip and electronics parts.