JA­PAN CORE CPI GAINS 0.3PC IN APRIL

Rise of­fers pol­i­cy­mak­ers hope of steady eco­nomic re­cov­ery

New Straits Times - - Business World - TAKESHI MINAMI

TOKYO

With the econ­omy show­ing signs of life, many an­a­lysts now ex­pect the Bank of Ja­pan’s (BoJ) next move to be a re­duc­tion — rather than an ex­pan­sion — of its mon­e­tary stim­u­lus.

But BoJ of­fi­cials have stressed that any re­duc­tion in stim­u­lus would be some time away, point­ing to the fact in­fla­tion re­mains dis­tant from their tar­get.

Mean­while, Ja­pan’s net ex­ter­nal as­sets rose to their sec­ond-high­est amount on record at the end of last year driven by ris­ing merg­ers and ac­qui­si­tions over­seas by Ja­panese firms and port­fo­lio in­vest­ment, said the Fi­nance Min­istry yes­ter­day.

The net value of as­sets held by the govern­ment, busi­nesses and in­di­vid­u­als stood at 349 tril­lion yen (RM13.32 tril­lion).

As at end-2015, Ja­pan’s net ex­ter­nal as­sets were at 339 tril­lion yen. Ja­pan’s net ex­ter­nal as­sets use the Shell and 76 brand names on prod­ucts.

“Mo­tiva has made sig­nif­i­cant strides over the last three years to re­po­si­tion our busi­ness were about 1.7 times those held by China, with 210 tril­lion yen in net as­sets at the end of last year, fol­lowed by Ger­many, said the min­istry.

Ja­pan’s gross ex­ter­nal as­sets rose five per cent to a record 998 tril­lion yen as gains in Ja­panese di­rect in­vest­ment over­seas and for­eign bond in­vest­ment more than off­set drops in the ap­praised yen value of for­eign cur­rency-de­nom­i­nated as­sets.

Ja­pan’s di­rect in­vest­ment in the US reached a record 53 tril­lion yen at end of last year, up 2.7 tril­lion yen from a year ago, mak­ing it the most pop­u­lar des­ti­na­tion that ac­counts for a third of over­all di­rect in­vest­ment over­seas.

Over­all ex­ter­nal debt grew 6.2 per cent to a record 649 tril­lion yen fol­low­ing in­creased for­eign di­rect in­vest­ment and ac­qui­si­tions of Ja­panese bonds by for­eign in­vestors. Reuters

Re­tail­ers are strug­gling to raise prices be­cause wages and house­hold in­come aren’t in­creas­ing much. They thus try to trim costs by keep­ing wages low.

through fo­cused im­prove­ment ef­forts and or­ganic growth op­por­tu­ni­ties,” said Mo­tiva pres­i­dent and chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer Dan Ro­masko. Reuters

BLOOMBERG PIC

Mo­tiva En­ter­prises be­came a wholly owned sub­sidiary of Saudi Aramco on May 1 with the split of a 19-year part­ner­ship be­tween Aramco and Royal Dutch Shell Plc.

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