Tuesday, 11 August 2009

Japan's current account surplus and machinery orders rise

AFP/CNA reports good news for the Japanese economy.

Hopes mounted Monday that Japan's economy is on the mend after its worst recession in decades as the current account surplus showed the first rise in 16 months and machinery orders rebounded.

The surplus in the current account, the broadest measure of trade in goods and services, more than doubled in size in June to 1.15 trillion yen (11.8 billion dollars) from 471.6 billion yen a year earlier, the government said...

Exports increased 14.6 per cent in June from the previous month, narrowing their year-on-year decline to 37 per cent, after a fall of 42.2 per cent in May, the data showed...

There was also good news on core machinery orders, a closely watched indicator of corporate capital spending, which rebounded by a stronger-than-expected 9.7 per cent in June from a record low the previous month...

Even so, core orders are expected to decline 8.6 per cent in the three months to September from the previous quarter, following a drop of 4.9 per cent in April-June, according to the manufacturers' own forecasts.

Meanwhile, Bloomberg reports that confidence is rising among Japanese merchants.

Confidence among Japanese merchants rose to a 22-month high in July, adding to signs that the world’s second-largest economy is heading for a recovery.

The Economy Watchers index, a survey of barbers, taxi drivers and others who deal with consumers, climbed to 42.4 from 42.2 in June, a seventh monthly increase, the Cabinet Office said today in Tokyo.

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