Industrial production decreases 0.1% in November

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
The Economy, Trade and Industry Ministry building in Chiyoda Ward, Tokyo.

TOKYO (Jiji Press) — Japan’s industrial production in November fell 0.1% from the previous month, down for three months in a row, the Economy, Trade and Industry Ministry said in a preliminary report Wednesday.

The seasonally adjusted production index for the manufacturing and mining sectors stood at 95.2 against 100 for the base year of 2015. In the preceding month, the index was down 3.2%.

Moves to put off capital spending grew due to concerns over an economic slowdown at home and abroad amid decreases in demand from China, the United States and Europe as well as in Japan.

The ministry lowered its basic assessment for the second straight month, saying that production is on a weak note. For October, the ministry said production was “picking up slowly” despite some weakness.

The November result came against the median forecast of a 0.3% drop among 17 economic research institutes surveyed by Jiji Press.

Production fell in eight out of the 15 industries surveyed.

Output at makers of general-purpose and business-oriented machinery, such as conveyors, slipped 7.9%. Manufacturers of production machinery posted a decline of 5.7% due to lower chipmaking equipment production.

The November shipment index stood at 93.0, down 0.5%, with nine industries posting decreases. The inventory index was up 0.3% at 103.6, with eight industries logging growth.

Production at manufacturers is forecast to increase 2.8% in December on the back of growth in production of electronic parts and devices, but is expected to decline 0.6% in January due to falls in output of flat panel-manufacturing equipment and other items, the ministry said.

“We will continue closely monitoring the economic situation abroad and companies’ supply plans,” a ministry official said.