Asian shares are trading in mixed territory after China reported a tumble in exports and Japan revised its figures for its shrinking fourth-quarter GDP.
In late-day trade, Shanghai’s SSE index ended basically flat at 2,901 while Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 lost 0.8 percent to finish at 16,783. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng fell 0.7 percent to end at 20,012.
China’s exports fell 25.4 percent on-year in February, compared with an 11.2 percent drop in January, according to data released by China’s customs administration Tuesday. This steep drop can partly be explained by the timing of this year’s Chinese New Year holiday, which started later than in 2015 and disrupted export businesses for a significant portion of February this year. Nonetheless, the figures provide yet another example of how China’s economy is slowing.
China’s February imports slid by 13.8 percent on the year, a continued decline, but less than January’s 18.8 percent drop.
Meanwhile, Japan’s economy contracted less than initially estimated in the fourth quarter of last year. But private consumption fell slightly more than previous figures indicated. The country’s GDP for the fourth quarter fell an annualized 1.1 percent. The government’s first estimate, released in February, saw GDP drop 1.4 percent over the period.