Japan beats current account gap
TOKYO - Agence France-PresseJapan swung back to a current account surplus in February after suffering a record deficit in the previous month, official data said yesterday.
The surplus in the current account, the broadest measure of trade with the rest of the world, stood at 1.18 trillion yen ($14.4 bn), the finance ministry said.
The latest reading was 30.7 percent lower than a year earlier but largely in line with a 1.15 trillion yen surplus tipped in a poll of economists surveyed by Dow Jones Newswires and the Nikkei business daily.
The country logged a record 437.3 billion yen deficit in January due to lower exports and higher energy costs.
US recovery helps rise in exports
That was Japan’s first deficit since January 2009, when the country posted a then-record shortfall of 132.7 billion yen at the height of the global financial crisis.
Japanese exports have been inching higher on the back of a recovery in the United States, a positive sign for an economy heavily dependent on overseas demand for growth.
The current account measures the value of a country’s imports and foreign investments against the value of its overseas income such as exports of goods and services.