More gloom for Japan as BoJ downgrades economy

JAPAN - Confidence in Japan's precarious economy was further undermined on Thursday 20 September as the Bank of Japan lowered its assessment of the economy for the fourth time in as many months and official figures showed a 47.2 per cent slide in the trade surplus as exports sank.

Japan's trade surplus fell Y320.2bn in August from Y606.3bn a year earlier as exports fell 8.8 per cent to Y3,833bn, a faster rate of decline than imports which fell 2.4 per cent.

Exports, which are expected to contin