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Reuters is out with key insights on the Japanese trade balance report published earlier today that saw the country’s exports falling for the fifth straight month in April, as escalating US-China trade war started to have its adverse impact on the Japanese shipments of chip-making equipment to China.

Key Points:

“Japan’s trade surplus with the United States rose for a second month as auto exports accelerated, which could draw U.S. President Donald Trump’s ire before U.S.-Japan trade negotiations begin this week followed by a leaders’ summit a few days later.

Ministry of Finance (MOF) data showed on Wednesday Japan’s exports fell 2.4% in April from a year earlier, down for a fifth straight month.

That compared with a 1.8% drop seen by analysts in a Reuters poll, and a similar 2.4% decline in March.

Exports to China fell 6.3% in April from a year earlier, down for the second consecutive month.”