At the beginning of the new year, I would like to review the achievements of the administration of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and the challenges it faces in its second year on the economic and political fronts.

Economically, Abe's policies did produce results. One symbolic development was the rise in share prices, which jumped 60 percent from the beginning of 2013, propelling the Nikkei index over the 16,000 line at year's end.

There's no doubt the upturn in the stock market has improved economic sentiment, but rising share prices merely represent a shift in liquidity from bank deposits and other safe assets favored by risk-averse investors to stocks, which are just another form of financial assets. In other words, it's just a movement between segments of assets.