Japan's trade surplus rose 7.7% in February from a year earlier to 979.6 billion yen ($8.34 billion), government data showed on Thursday.
The figure compared with analysts' median forecast of a surplus of 700 billion yen.
Exports rose 9.7% from a year earlier to 6.4176 trillion yen, while imports were up 10.1% at 5.4380 trillion yen, data from the Ministry of Finance showed.
Exports to the United States grew 7.0% from a year earlier to 1.4235 trillion yen, while those to China rose 9.2% to 884.6 billion yen.
On a seasonally adjusted basis, the overall trade surplus fell 37.7% from the previous month to 655.11 billion yen, the data showed.