Japan's Jan. Machine Tool Orders Lowest in 7 Years

Economy

Tokyo, Feb. 20 (Jiji Press)--Machine tool orders received by Japanese makers in January plunged 35.6 pct from a year before to 80,777 million yen, hitting the lowest level for the month in seven years, industry data showed Thursday.

Orders declined for the 16th straight month, as companies in Japan and abroad curbed capital spending amid slowing global economic growth, according to the data from the Japan Machine Tool Builders Association.

The impacts of the outbreak of the new COVID-19 coronavirus were still limited in January, Yukio Iimura, chairman of the association, told a press conference.

The negative effects are expected to "become evident" in February and later, he said, citing the possibility of client companies postponing investment in China, where the viral outbreak originated.

Of the January total, orders from abroad fell 34.9 pct to 51,191 million yen, the lowest level for the month in seven years. Domestic orders were down 36.7 pct at 29,586 million yen, slipping below 30 billion yen for the first time in six years and eight months.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press