Trade balance swings to first surplus since 2012

Apr 22, 2015

Trade balance swings to first surplus since 2012

The nation’s exports exceeded imports in March for the first time in almost three years, providing support for an economy struggling with weak domestic spending. The trade surplus was ¥229.3 billion, the Finance Ministry announced Wednesday, soaring above a median estimate of ¥44.6 billion ...

Mar 31, 2015

Oil imports slide 7.5% in February

The nation imported 7.5 percent less crude oil last month from a year earlier, down for the fourth consecutive month, a government agency said Tuesday. Imports totaled 102.34 million barrels, of which oil from the Middle East accounted for 82.4 percent, up 0.3 percentage ...

Two exotic termites find love in U.S., worrying researchers

Mar 26, 2015

Two exotic termites find love in U.S., worrying researchers

Two particularly hungry, exotic termite species apparently have found love halfway around the world and, as with so many other Florida hook-ups, the results are disturbing. Asian and Formosan subterranean termites are two of the most destructive termite species in the world, responsible for ...

Rose imports bloom nationwide for spring ceremonies

Mar 12, 2015

Rose imports bloom nationwide for spring ceremonies

Rose imports to Japan are starting to peak ahead of the nation’s annual rites for graduation ceremonies and corporate personnel reshuffles. Workers at flower importer Classic Japan Ltd. have been especially busy this week inspecting roses from Kenya at its storage facility near Narita ...

Mar 9, 2015

Japan logs current account surplus for seventh month straight

Led by higher exports amid a weaker yen and lower oil imports, Japan logged a current account surplus for the seventh consecutive month in January, with the balance standing at ¥61.4 billion, ($509 million), the government said Monday in a preliminary report. The balance, ...

Japan blocked record number of imported fakes in 2014

Mar 4, 2015

Japan blocked record number of imported fakes in 2014

Customs officers intercepted a record 32,060 cases of fakes and other items violating intellectual property rights in 2014, the Finance Ministry said Wednesday. The number, which increased 14.0 percent from 2013, marked a record high for the third straight year, the ministry said, adding ...

Jan 9, 2015

¥7 trillion boost for Japan expected from cheaper oil: Amari

The global plunge in oil prices could translate into annual economic gains of ¥7 trillion, Economic and Fiscal Policy Minister Akira Amari said Friday. “Oil prices are now less than half what they were at their peak. That stops money outflows and will likely ...

Imports declined in November on plunging crude oil prices

Dec 17, 2014

Imports declined in November on plunging crude oil prices

Imports dropped 1.7 percent in November from the year before to ¥7.08 trillion, declining for the first time in three months as crude oil prices plunged across the globe, government data showed Wednesday. The balance in goods trade remained in the red for the ...

Dec 5, 2014

Bankruptcies caused by weakening yen set new record in November

Corporate bankruptcies linked to the yen’s slide hit a new record in November, highlighting the strains on small and midsize companies as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe campaigns for re-election on his deflation-busting economic strategy. Forty-two of the companies that failed in November cited the ...

Exports rebound in boost for Abe's policies

Aug 20, 2014

Exports rebound in boost for Abe's policies

Japan’s exports rose more than forecast in July, bouncing back from two straight declines to support an economy that contracted last quarter by the most since the period immediately following the Great East Japan Earthquake in March 2011. Overseas shipments rose 3.9 percent from ...