Japan registered a current account deficit of 507.5 billion yen from January through June of 2014, the biggest on record for any six-month period, government data showed Friday, underscoring the country’s diminishing ability to earn money abroad.
It was also the first time since comparable data became available in 1985 that Japan’s current account balance — one of the widest gauges of international trade for a nation — slipped into red ink in the first half of a year, the Finance Ministry said.
Imports jumped 14.7 percent from a year earlier to 41,875.2 billion yen against a backdrop of rising imports of liquefied natural gas and crude oil, while exports climbed 8.1 percent to 35,762.7 billion yen sustained by the yen’s weakness, the ministry said in a preliminary report.
The balance of goods trade marked a record deficit of 6,112.4 billion yen.
Fears are growing that Japan could face a constant current account deficit in the near future, which may ultimately hurt the country’s economic and fiscal situation.