Nikkei 225 rallies as Japan posts record high trade deficit

<p>The Nikkei 225 has gained as Japan reveals its highest trade deficit.</p>

The Nikkei 225 rallied at close of play in Tokyo today (January 24th), after Japan posted a record high trade deficit for 2012, as exports to China and Europe continue to decline.

According to the ministry of finance, the gap rose to 6.9 trillion yen (£49 billion) for the full 12-month period.

Ongoing anti-Japanese business sentiment in China – the nation's biggest trading partner – has been blamed for this result, as the two countries continue their territorial dispute over a clutch of islands in the East China Sea, while the economic downturn in the West rumbles on.

Japanese exports have been sliding for seven consecutive months, with shipments declining by 5.8 per cent in December year on year.

The strength of the yen is also being cited as one reason why the nation's goods are not as appealing to the international market at present.

At close of play today, the Nikkei 225 rose by 1.2 per cent to an index value of 10620.8 points.

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