Business

Hitachi exec Toyoaki Nakamura gets Lower House OK for Bank of Japan board

Reuters

The Lower House on Tuesday approved Toyoaki Nakamura, a Hitachi Ltd. executive, to join the Bank of Japan’s nine-member Policy Board, paving the way for full Diet approval of the government nominee.

Nakamura, 67, would replace Yukitoshi Funo, a former Toyota Motor Corp. executive who holds a neutral policy stance. If approved by the Upper House, which looks certain, Nakamura will begin his five-year term July 1.

About half the respondents in a Reuters poll of economists expected the BOJ to further easing measures later this month, following its easing of corporate funding strains in March to calm markets jolted by the coronavirus pandemic.

Nakamura’s addition is seen as unlikely to tip the balance of the board, as past members who hailed from the corporate sector tended to vote with the majority.

The central bank’s board is currently split between those who see room to increase stimulus and those more worried about the rising cost of prolonged easing, particularly the hit to banks’ profits from years of ultralow interest rates.

Nakamura’s debut on the Policy Board would be the July 21-22 meeting, when the BOJ will issue a quarterly report of its long-term economic and price projections.

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