Japan posted a record $3.7 billion trade surplus with the United States in July, the Finance Ministry announced yesterday.
Preliminary figures showed Japan's exports to the United States in July rose 4.7 percent from a year earlier to $5.8 billion, while imports from the United States fell 8.6 percent to $2.1 billion, a ministry report said.
The trade surplus with the United States surpassed the previous monthly high of $3.5 billion registered in April, it said.
Exports of cars to the United States alone rose 18.1 percent from a year earlier, to $1.5 billion. Japan's auto exports to the United States have been increasing sharply since April, when the government eased restrictions first imposed in 1980.
Trade relations between the two countries have remained strained, with dozens of bills aimed at curbing imports from Japan under consideration in the U.S. Congress. The U.S. trade deficit with Japan amounted to an estimated $36.8 billion in 1984.
In the first six months of this year, Japan's overall trade surplus totaled $17.7 billion. Of the total, the U.S. trade deficit with Japan amounted to $16.8 billion.