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MNI BRIEF: Japan's Real Exports Hit By Auto Supply Chain Cuts

MNI (Tokyo)

Data for August and September are expected to show sharper drops than expected.

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A deeper than expected supply chain disruption for automobile makers has led Bank of Japan officials to expect a weaker real export index in August and September, MNI understands.

The real export index fell 3.7% m/m in August for the first drop in three months following +1.6% (revised from +1.7%) in July. The index for the July-August period was unchanged from the previous quarter.

Japan's August exports rose 26.2% on year and imports jumped 44.7%, according to trade data released on Thursday.

The figures were calculated by MNI based on BOJ data and confirmed. The full August real export index data is due on Sept. 22. BOJ officials see September weaker than August as the impact of the supply chain disruption becomes clearer.

Bank officials maintain the view that production and exports are expected to return to a rising trend due to a recovery production in the first quarter of next year, but their hope is somewhat clouded by uncertainty over a recovery of Covid-19 hit overseas factories.