Japan : restart of the economy in June, confirmed by several indicators

Japon : le redémarrage de l’économie en juin confirmé par plusieurs indicateurs

Surprise drop in unemployment and a rebound higher than expected in industrial production : two indicators published on Friday confirmed the restart of the japanese economy in June after the state of emergency put in place in April-may in the country in the face of the sars coronavirus.

The proportion of job seekers compared to the total of the active population is fixed at 2.8 % last month, after 2.9 % in may, and while the consensus of economists had predicted a further increase to 3.1 %.

Sign of the resumption of activity in the country, the part-time unemployment, which had affected nearly 6 million Japanese at the peak of the state of emergency in the country in April, fell to 2.36 million individuals in June (about 4 % of the active population), according to data from the ministry of internal Affairs.

Even if the economic crisis related to the pandemic struck a hard blow to the country, it is still facing a shortage of labour in various sectors in the face of the significant demographic aging of its population.

This specific local context (a fact that many japanese companies have preferred not to lay off their employees during the state of emergency, to save a recruitment process potentially long-at the time of the restart of the activity.

The ratio between the supply of and demand for employment is still shrinking in June, at the rate of 111 offers for every 100 applicants, compared with 120 offers for 100 applicants in may, has detailed the ministry.

Also the unemployment rate in Japan should rise again in the coming months, as the demand for employment is increasing much faster than the supply, according to a note from Capital Economics, which still expects an unemployment rate of close to 4 % at the end of the year.

Automobiles, machine tools, plastic

Another positive surprise came from the japanese industrial output, which rose 2.7% in June on a month-while analysts ‘ consensus Bloomberg had expected a rebound more moderate (+1 %).

It puts an end to a series of four consecutive months of decline in industrial production due to the pandemic, notably with a dip of 9.8 per cent in April – a record since the nuclear disaster of Fukushima in 2011 – and a fall of 8.9% in may.

Shipments of manufactured products japanese have also increased, from 5.2% in June on a month, but stocks have continued to decline (-2,4 %), according to figures from the ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (Meti).

The sectors of automotive, machine-tools and plastic products were the main contributors to the rise in the production in June, according to the Meti.

In spite of the uncertainties related to the pandemic Covid-19, who returned to the field in the world, the industry of japanese surveyed by the department are counting on a strong increase of 11.2 % of their production in July on a month and 9.2 % in August.

Retail sales in Japan have significantly rebounded in June on a month (+13,1 %), another indicator released on Thursday, also above expectations.

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