Surging yen having a negative impact on sales at 37% of nation’s companies

Kyodo News

A total of 36.7 percent of companies say a strong yen will negatively affect their sales, while only 6.9 percent say the yen’s appreciation will have positive effects, according to a survey by Teikoku Databank Ltd.

But asked about the effects of the yen’s surge on the economy, 65.5 percent said the trend is not desirable, while 9.9 percent thought favorably of it, according to the private research agency.

Because exporters continue to be a major driving force behind the economic recovery, “excessive fluctuations of currency rates will pose risk not only to corporate earnings but also to the Japanese economy as a whole,” Teikoku Databank said in a report on its findings.

The survey was conducted on a wide variety of companies, including manufacturers, wholesalers, retailers and contractors.

Of the total, 34.9 percent said their sales have not been affected by the strong yen.

Among specific sectors, however, more than 60 percent of makers of electronics and other machinery, as well as transportation machinery and equipment manufacturers, believe the rising yen will have negative effects on their sales.

Asked what they are doing to deal with the yen’s appreciation, 19.2 percent of firms engaged in overseas transactions said they are increasing procurement abroad, while 18.9 percent said they are raising their product prices in foreign currency terms so their sales value will remain the same on a yen basis.

The percentage of those combating the strong yen by restructuring their domestic manufacturing operations came to 14.0 percent, while 9.3 percent are boosting overseas production and 7.7 percent are setting up or expanding production bases abroad.

The Teikoku Databank survey was conducted between Aug. 19 and Aug. 31 and received valid responses from 11,578 companies.