Asian exporters starting to benefit from US Christmas shopping demand, helped by iPhone

A man takes pictures with an Apple iPhone 6s  in Beijing, China.
A man takes pictures with an Apple iPhone 6s in Beijing, China. PHOTO: REUTERS

SINGAPORE (BLOOMBERG) - It's never too early to start your Christmas shopping, and Asian nations are starting to benefit. Exports from the region are recovering as demand from the US and other developed economies picks up.

Shipments from China to the US rose 6.7 per cent in September from a year earlier, while Japan's gained 10.4 per cent. Taiwan's export orders to the US rose 20.5 per cent in September from August and were up 0.6 per cent from a year ago.

"Improvements in export data across the regional supply chain show promising signs that demand is returning within certain industries like electronics and automobiles," said Wai Ho Leong, a Singapore-based economist at Barclays plc.

The increasing shipments "are likely to set the stage for a later pickup in consumer demand from developed markets, namely US and Europe, in the coming months as we approach the pre- festive stocking period," he said.

One bright spot is electronics - Singapore's shipments rose 5.7 per cent in September from a year earlier, helping the city state's overall exports beat forecasts.

Apple Inc's iPhone 6S release in September gave Taiwan's exports a significant boost as companies including Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. are integral to the supply chain of the device, Hong-Kong based Natixis SA senior economist Trinh D. Nguyen wrote in a note. Taiwan's export orders for information and communication products expanded 37.3 percent month-on-month.