Japanese Exports Fall Again in May

Posted June 19th, 2011 at 10:10 pm (UTC-5)
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Japanese exports in May dropped more than 10 percent from a year earlier, marking the third straight monthly decline.

The government said Monday that exports shrank 10.3 percent to about $6 billion, while imports rose more than 12 percent, resulting in Japan’s biggest trade deficit since January 2009, when exports plunged in the wake of the global economic downturn.

Japanese auto exports plunged almost 39 percent as a result of disrupted production following the March 11 earthquake and tsunami.

The two disasters destroyed hundreds of factories in Japan’s northeastern coastal region, forcing manufacturing giants, such as carmakers Honda and Toyota and electronics producer Sony to suspend production.

Bloomberg financial news says higher unemployment in the United States and slowing economies elsewhere indicate that Japan will not be able to rely on global demand to recover from the slump caused by the twin disasters.