Big Japanese manufacturers are gaining momentum

Photo by Joe Mann / AFP / Getty Images

Confidence is rising among big manufacturers in Japan, the latest data shows.

Japan’s quarterly Tankan survey released by the Japanese central bank showed that business sentiment improved in the sector for the second straight quarter.

The index rose from a reading of +11 to +12, which is the highest since December 2015 for the closely watched economic indicator.

It was short of market expectations, however, for a rise to +14.

The sentiment index arrives at a net figure from a simple calculation of positive respondents less negative respondents.

This chart from shows the trend in Japanese manufacturer sentiment over the last year:

The Tankan survey also found that big Japanese manufacturers expect an increase capital expenditure by 0.6% in the 12 months to the end of March 2018 (forecast -0.1%).

The survey adds to a strong recent run of positive sentiment in Japan, and will factor into the Bank of Japan’s next interest rate meeting on April 26/27.

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