Japan's consumption-tax hike doesn't look like it's going to sink the economy, as a similar increase did five years ago. That's the good news.

The bad news is that the bump on Tuesday, to 10 percent from 8 percent, happened at an inauspicious time. While a recession isn't in the cards for Japan, the last thing any major economy needs is a fiscal brake.

Twice Prime Minister Shinzo Abe shied away from the increase. No wonder: A jump in the tax was widely blamed for a recession in 2014.