Japan's current account surplus shrank 17.3 per cent to 1.53 trillion yen (14.22 billion dollars) in July, compared with the same month a year before, thanks to expanding imports, the government said Wednesday.
The surplus shrank for the fifth-consecutive month as import growth was led by high prices for fuel, the Finance Ministry said.
The goods and services trade surplus plunged 93.5 per cent to 29.2 billion yen.
The goods trade surplus shrank 69.8 per cent to 232.2 billion yen while the services trade marked a deficit of 203 billion yen, down 35.8 per cent from a year before.
Exports hit their second-highest level in July, rising 8.7 per cent to 7.29 trillion yen, but imports rose more, at 18.9 per cent to 7.06 trillion yen.
The income surplus expanded 9.6 per cent to 1.66 trillion yen.
The current account balance, which is considered the broadest measure of trade, shows the gap between a country's income from foreign sources and foreign obligations payable, excluding net capital investment.