Business Topics

Business confidence sags, says Bank of Japan

Jul 1, 2014

Business confidence sags, says Bank of Japan

A 19-month rally in business confidence slowed sharply in the first quarter amid rising consumer prices spurred by the tax hike in April, the Bank of Japan said Tuesday. It was the first deterioration in six consecutive quarters. The Tankan survey for the April-June ...

Output rises 0.8% in tax hike rebound

Jun 30, 2014

Output rises 0.8% in tax hike rebound

Industrial output recovered slightly in May from an earlier decline sparked by April’s sales tax hike, stabilizing as factories produced more machinery, vehicles and electronic devices, government data showed Monday. Factory output in the world’s third-largest economy climbed 0.8 percent in May from a ...

Japan, U.S. resume bilateral TPP talks before Ottawa meeting

Jun 30, 2014

Japan, U.S. resume bilateral TPP talks before Ottawa meeting

Talks with the United States aimed at narrowing remaining differences over a Pacific free trade pact resumed Monday in Tokyo. Officials from all 12 negotiating members are gathering in Canada later this week. The two biggest economies in the Trans-Pacific Partnership framework will discuss ...

Jun 30, 2014

World Bank's Kim optimistic about Abe's 'third arrow'

World Bank President Jim Yong Kim has voiced optimism about Japan’s revamped growth strategy, the “third arrow” in Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s three-pillar economic policy package called “Abenomics.” Abe’s commitment to tackling “rock hard regulations” related to employment, agriculture and health care is a ...

Offers-seekers ratio at highest since '92

Jun 27, 2014

Offers-seekers ratio at highest since '92

Nationwide job availability improved in May to the best in about 22 years as the unemployment rate fell to 3.5 percent, the lowest in more than 16 years, the government said Friday. As companies became more willing to hire workers amid an uptick in ...

Jun 27, 2014

Tax small firms more to offset corporate rate cut, panel says

The Tax Commission says small and midsize firms should pay more taxes to offset the loss in revenue from Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s promised corporate tax cut, it said in its reform plan Friday. Analysts said that will no doubt draw fire for giving ...

Prices climb most in 32 years as wages limp along

Jun 27, 2014

Prices climb most in 32 years as wages limp along

Consumer prices climbed in May at their fastest pace in 32 years, swelled by the hike in the consumption tax and higher utility charges that are squeezing Japanese budgets as wage gains remain limited. Consumer prices excluding fresh food but not energy, rose 3.4 ...

Threat of housing bubble tempts Britain to act

Jun 26, 2014

Threat of housing bubble tempts Britain to act

Is Britain’s economy heading for bubble trouble? Concerns are mounting that the country’s housing market is overinflated, with London house prices rising almost 19 percent in the year to April. Bank of England Gov. Mark Carney has described the situation as the greatest risk ...

Corporate tax cut no 'magic wand,' warns ministry adviser

Jun 26, 2014

Corporate tax cut no 'magic wand,' warns ministry adviser

The plan to cut the corporate tax won’t be “a magic wand,” warns Hiroshi Yoshikawa, a key adviser to the finance minister. The Abe administration on Tuesday adopted new economic and fiscal policy guidelines that call for, among other things, lowering Japan’s effective corporate ...

Jun 25, 2014

Watchdog sees cloud computing curbing unlicensed software use

The rising use of cloud computing will help curtail unlicensed software use, a piracy watchdog said. Japan remains one of the countries with the lowest rate of unlicensed software use, at 19 percent last year, the Business Software Alliance, an industry lobby group, said ...