Japan Data On Tap For Friday

Japan is scheduled to release a raft of data on Friday, headlining a busy day for Asia-Pacific economic activity. On tap are February figures for unemployment, industrial production, retail sales, construction orders and housing starts.

The jobless rate (2.4 percent) and the jobs-to-applicant ratio (1.27) are both seen unchanged, while industrial production is tipped to rise 1.2 percent on month after slumping 6.7 percent in January. Retail sales are expected to add 2.8 percent on year after rising 2.3 percent in the previous month. Construction orders were up 9.1 percent on year and housing starts dropped 7.5 percent on year in January.

South Korea will provide February figures for industrial production and retail sales. Industrial production is expected to add 0.5 percent on month and 4.5 percent on year after slipping 1.3 percent on month and jumping 12.9 percent on year in January.

Thailand will release February numbers for industrial production, current account, imports, exports and trade balance. In January, industrial production was down 2.94 percent, while the current account showed a deficit of $0.200 billion, imports rose 1.50 percent on year, exports gained 7.2 percent on year and the trade deficit was $1.10 billion.

Finally, the markets in Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong, Indonesia and New Zealand are all closed for Good Friday.

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