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Financial News: Japan Industrial Output Declines More Than Expected

Japan Industrial Output Declines More Than Expected

11/29/2019 - 00:21:00 (RTTNews)

(RTTNews) - Japan's industrial production declined more than expected in October signaling a notable contraction in GDP during the fourth quarter, official data revealed Friday. The unemployment rate remained unchanged as expected in October, a separate communiqué showed today.

According to preliminary data from the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, industrial production plunged 4.2 percent month-on-month in October, in contrast to September's 1.7 percent increase. Economists had forecast a moderate decrease of 2 percent.

On a yearly basis, industrial production decreased sharply by 7.4 percent after rising 1.3 percent a month ago. Output was forecast to fall 5.2 percent.

Further, data showed that manufacturers expect to cut production by 1.5 percent in November but to lift output by 1.1 percent in December.

The sharp fall in industrial production in October suggests the economy might have been hit harder by the sales tax hike than expected, Tom Learmouth, an economist at Capital Economics, said.

The economist suspects the output gap would have to turn negative to convince the Bank of Japan to ease further, something a slight rise in unemployment couldn't achieve on its own.

Data from the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications the unemployment rate held steady at seasonally adjusted 2.4 percent in October. The rate matched economists' expectations.

The job-to-applicant ratio was also stable at 1.57 percent in October.

Another report showed that Tokyo core consumer prices excluding fresh food rose 0.6 percent annually in November and consumer prices excluding fresh food and energy gained 0.7 percent.

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