Japan’s trade deficit narrowed sharply to JPY 82.1 billion in November 2019, from JPY 739 billion a year earlier and compared to market expectations of a JPY 369 billion deficit. Imports decreased 15.7% over a year earlier, the seventh consecutive drop, mainly due to lower oil prices and a rise in sales tax. Exports slumped 7.9%, falling for the twelfth straight month amid a drop in shipments to China and the US.