POLL-Japan’s April factory output recorded its first fall in 3 months on China’s lockdown

Reuters://realtime/verb=Open/url=cpurl://apps.cp./Apps/econ-polls?RIC=JPIP1%3DECI industrial production survey data

Reuters://realtime/verb=Open/url=cpurl://apps.cp./Apps/econ-polls?RIC=JPRSLS%3DECI retail sales survey data

Reuters://realtime/verb=Open/url=cpurl://apps.cp./Apps/econ-polls?RIC=JPUNR%3DECI unemployment rate poll data

TOKYO, May 27 (Reuters)Japanese factory output likely fell in April for the first time in three months as some manufacturers were hit by strict COVID-19 lockdowns in Shanghai and other industrial hubs in China.

Japan’s industrial production likely fell 0.2% in April from a month earlier, according to the median forecast from a poll of 18 economists.

That would mark the first decline since January and follow a 0.3% gain in March.

“Exports have been suppressed by China’s lockdown, which has likely affected (Japanese) production, especially in the general and electrical machinery sectors which have greater export exposure to China,” the economists said. of SMBC Nikko Securities.

Automakers including Toyota Motor Corp 7203.T and Mazda Motor Corp. 7261.Thave also been forced to cut domestic production plans due to stringent restrictions to combat the spread of the coronavirus in China.

The effect of China’s anti-COVID controls is creating another downside concern for Japanese manufacturers this summer, adding to existing supply bottlenecks and an increase in raw material costs, analysts said.

The poll also showed April retail sales were likely 2.6% higher than a year earlier, marking the second month to show a year-on-year increase, thanks to the full lifting of COVID restrictions at the end of March. .

The Ministry of Industry will release factory production and retail sales data on May 31 at 8:50 a.m. (May 30 at 23:50 GMT).

Japan’s unemployment rate held steady at 2.6% in April, while the job-to-applicant ratio likely rose from 0.01 to 1.23, according to the poll. The jobs data is due May 31 at 8:30 a.m. (May 30 at 23:30 GMT).

(Reporting by Kantaro Komiya; Editing by Bradley Perrett)

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