Dec 26, 2014

Job availability rose for second month in row in November

Job availability rose for a second straight month in November, the government said Friday, suggesting firms are seeking to hire more workers as corporate profits improve. The ratio of job offers to job-seekers climbed to 1.12 from 1.10 in October, meaning 112 positions were ...

Inflation drive hampered by recession-hobbled economy

Dec 26, 2014

Inflation drive hampered by recession-hobbled economy

Inflation slowed for a fourth month in November and industrial production and retail sales unexpectedly dropped, based on government data released Friday, pointing to further weakness in an economy Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is trying to revive from recession. Output fell 0.6 percent in ...

Dec 25, 2014

Next stimulus package likely to total ¥3.5 trillion

Japan’s next economic stimulus package is expected to weight in at just ¥3.5 trillion, including some ¥420 billion in new subsidies to help personal spending and reinvigorate regions outside big cities, informed sources said. The previous stimulus package, compiled as part of the supplementary ...

Next year's draft budget unlikely to be cleared until Jan. 14

Dec 11, 2014

Next year's draft budget unlikely to be cleared until Jan. 14

The Abe administration is looking to adopt the draft budget for fiscal 2015 at a Cabinet meeting Jan. 14, assuming the ruling coalition wins Sunday’s election as expected, according to informed sources. In another key step for compiling the budget for the fiscal year ...

Dec 9, 2014

Fitch places Japan credit on 'Rating Watch Negative'

Fitch Ratings on Tuesday placed Japan’s sovereign credit on “Rating Watch Negative,” warning that the delay in the next consumption tax increase puts the government’s long-term objective of reducing the national debt at risk. The warning came a week after Moody’s downgraded Japan’s credit ...

Dec 9, 2014

Japan now at a crossroads

by Hazel Henderson

Japan has the opportunity in the Dec. 14 election to break away from its past obsession with measuring GDP growth. Voters can change the national scorecard to a system-wide view of infrastructural assets and quality of life.

Dec 8, 2014

Lending data bucks recession with help from yen

Bank lending unexpectedly rose at its fastest pace since 2009, a positive sign in an economy that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is trying to steer out of the deeper than expected recession. Loans, excluding lending by local “shinkin” credit banks that serve consumers and ...

Dec 8, 2014

British economist urges balance in Japan's structural reform

A British economist is stressing the need for the administration of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to achieve a balance when it promotes structural reform as part its economic growth strategy. “I hope Japan doesn’t have too much structural reform and destroy some of the ...

BOJ's bold monetary easing a great success, economist says

Dec 8, 2014

BOJ's bold monetary easing a great success, economist says

The Bank of Japan’s bold monetary easing steps under Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s reflationary economic policy package, dubbed “Abenomics,” have brought about great success, according to Yuji Shimanaka, head of the business cycle research body for Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities Co. “The subsequent ...

Dec 5, 2014

The elephant in the room

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's decision to postpone the second phase of the consumption tax hike may be popular with much of the electorate, but it would be unfortunate if the decision diverts people's attention from the nation's real fiscal plight.