Nikkei 225 closes higher as exports slide for 6th month

<p>The main Japanese stock benchmark rallied after it was revealed the nation’s export market is continuing to struggle.</p>

The Nikkei 225 closed higher in trading this morning (December 19th) after official figures revealed the nation's overseas trade suffered another blow in November.

New data shows that exports fell for the sixth month in a row, highlighting the issues the newly-elected Liberal Democratic Party face as they settle back into office after three years in opposition.

Shipments slipped by 4.1 per cent in November compared to one year ago, with exports to key trading partner China declined by 14.5 per cent as a result of anti-Japanese business sentiment in the world's number two economy, stemming from a territorial dispute between the countries over islands in the East China Sea.

Furthermore, exports to the European Union – which is embroiled in its own debt crisis – plunged by 20 per cent.

At the end of the day in Tokyo today, the Nikkei 225 rose by 2.3 per cent to an index value of 10160.4 points.

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