Business / Economy Mar 31, 2014

Manufacturing slumps as tax hike looms large

Japan's industrial production fell in February, undercutting economists' forecasts, as the first sales tax hike since 1997 risks stalling the economic recovery. Output fell 2.3 percent from the previous month, the steepest drop in eight months, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry said Monday. ...

Stores looking to tourists for big sales

Business Mar 25, 2014

Stores looking to tourists for big sales

Many major department stores are zeroing in on foreign tourists and other visitors exempt from paying the consumption tax if they spend over a certain amount, anticipating that sales of luxury items will plunge following the sales tax hike next Tuesday. Department stores have enjoyed ...

Business / Economy Mar 19, 2014

Japan logs record trade deficit for month of February

Japan registered a goods trade deficit of ¥800.3 billion in February, a record for the month and up 3.5 percent from a year before, the government said Wednesday, amid growing imports of fossil fuels after the Fukushima nuclear crisis. The trade balance posted the 20th ...

Business / Economy Mar 18, 2014

Analysts split on fiscal crisis timeline

by Masaaki Iwamoto

Economists are split over how long the government has to rein in the world's biggest debt burden, a Bloomberg News survey shows, adding to a debate on whether the government should keep ratcheting up the sales tax. Eleven of 34 analysts said the government has ...

Business Jan 17, 2014

Firms' tax hike limits face scrutiny

The government said Friday it has started sending inspectors to more than 260 companies suspected of not allowing smaller wholesalers or subcontractors to pass on cost increases stemming from the consumption tax hike in April. The move is based on a survey conducted by the ...