The Short- and Long-Run Effects of Exchange Rate Changes on the Japanese Electronics Industry

Author Name THORBECKE, Willem  (Senior Fellow, RIETI)
Creation Date/NO. April 2012 12-E-019
Research Project East Asian Production Networks and Global Imbalances
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The value of Japanese electronics exports has tumbled since the advent of the Global Financial Crisis, largely because export prices have fallen. This paper presents evidence that the appreciation of the yen between 2007 and 2011 caused yen export prices for electronics goods to fall by more than 20%. Yen export prices fell much more than yen costs over this period, implying that profit margins have been squeezed. This paper also reports that, in the long run, a 10% appreciation of the yen will reduce the volume of electronics exports by 10%. Japanese firms could mitigate the adverse impact of the strong yen by producing innovative products rather than competing based on price in commoditized industries.