Japanese economy ‘at standstill’

The Japanese economy is at a standstill, Japan’s government has said, as concerns about the strong yen continue to grow.

The recovery in the economy was “pausing”, the Cabinet Office said in a monthly statement.

It is the most negative the government has been about the economy in nearly two years.

The rising yen and a slowdown in global demand for Japanese exports was blamed for the downgrade.

In recent months, the government has insisted that the economy is “picking up”.

But it said it now expected the economy to remain weak for some time, with “weakening” exports a chief concern.

It said shipments to Asia in particular were becoming weaker, further hitting exporters that are already suffering from the strong yen.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-11571644

 

 

China’s trade surplus falls to $16.9bn

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-11530198

The gap between China’s imports and exports narrowed in September, official data has shown.

But analysts say the decline is unlikely to ease the pressure on Beijing to strengthen its currency.

The US has been among its strongest critics, claiming China deliberately undervalues the yuan, boosting China’s exports by making them cheap.

China’s trade surplus fell to a five-month low of $16.9bn (£10.7bn), down from $20bn in August.

Exports rose 25.1% year-on-year in September to $145bn, but the pace of growth was slower than the 34.4% growth seen in August.

Imports rose 24.1% year-on-year to a record high of $128.1bn, compared with August’s growth of 35.2%.

German economy surges 2.2% in quarter

http://edition.cnn.com/2010/BUSINESS/08/13/german.gdp.growth.ft/index.html?hpt=T2#fbid=5ottK_FOtpr&wom=false

Germany on Friday reasserted itself as the economic growth engine of the eurozone, after gross domestic product expanded at a stellar 2.2 percent rate in the second quarter compared with the previous three months.

The growth spurt experienced by Germany is partly due to one-off factors, such as pent-up demand from the winter season and the earlier economic recovery in its Asian and American export markets.

With consumer confidence still relatively low in Europe, there has been little sign so far of a pick up in domestic demand, which economists are looking for as a signal of a sustained recovery. But appetite for consumption is likely to be curtailed by fiscal tightening measures being unveiled in most eurozone member states.