Japan posted a trade deficit of 274 Million Yen. Exports were down for the first time in 3 months, a 3.7-percent decline from a year earlier, while imports rose 17.9 percent.
Delayed shipments of semiconductors and other electronics components led the decline in exports.
Adding to the strong yen and supply chain disruptions due to the Thai floods, a slowdown of the global economy is creating a drag on Japanese exports.
Higher crude oil prices led the rise in imports, along with an increase in imports of liquefied natural gas for power generation to make up for halted nuclear power plants.