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The average level of savings per household increased 3.5 percent to 13.5 million yen this year, and average after-tax income rose slightly to 6.05 million yen, according to a Bank of Japan survey released Sept. 19.

About 46 percent of the 4,286 households surveyed said they have debts amounting to 10.8 million yen on average, up from 10.5 million yen last year. Households are spending 84 percent of their after-tax income, up from 82.1 percent in 1996, the survey said.

Only 34 percent of the respondents said they know of the “Big Bang” financial reform initiative. Of those who knew it, 36 percent said it would be a burden as financial products become more complicated, while 33 percent said it would have a favorable impact. The survey was conducted nationwide in June. The BOJ serves as the secretariat for the central committee on savings public relations, which comprises 40 economic and other organizations.

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