Markets

Japanese unemployment just plunged to a multi-decade low

Japanese unemployment plunged to 2.2% in May, the lowest level since 1992. The ratio of jobs to job seekers hit 1.6, the highest level in over four decades. Despite super-tight labour market conditions, wage growth remains elusive in Japan. The BoJ believes that will need to change for it to […]
Japanese unemployment just plunged to a multi-decade low
Markets

Japan is struggling to boost inflationary pressures

Japanese inflation is weak, and moving further away from the Bank of Japan’s target. That trend looks set to continue if the latest inflation report from Tokyo is anything to go by. According to the Japanese government, inflation excluding fresh food prices, known as core inflation, rose by just 0.5% […]
Japan is struggling to boost inflationary pressures
Markets

Japanese inflation is moving further away from the BOJ’s target

Japanese inflation has fallen further below the Bank of Japan’s (BoJ) 2% annual target, underlining the struggle to muster any price pressures despite super-loose monetary policy settings. According to the Japanese government, core inflation which excludes fresh food prices rose by just 0.7% in the year to April, below the […]
Japanese inflation is moving further away from the BOJ’s target
Markets

Japan’s economy just shrunk for the first time in over 2 years

The Japanese economy shrunk in early 2018, recording its first quarterly contraction since late 2015. According to the Japanese government, real GDP fell by 0.2% in the three months to March, undershooting expectations for an unchanged reading for the quarter. It was the first decline in nine quarters, snapping the […]
Japan’s economy just shrunk for the first time in over 2 years
Markets

The Bank of Japan isn’t rushing to do anything

The Bank of Japan just left monetary policy settings unchanged, again. Its GDP and inflation forecasts were largely unchanged from those offered three months ago. The bank still doesn’t see inflation hitting its 2% target in the next couple of years. At a time when other major central banks are […]
The Bank of Japan isn’t rushing to do anything
Markets

Japan just delivered a mixed report card on how its economy is faring

Japan just released a raft of economic data. The detail was mixed with ongoing strength in labour market indicators and a stronger-than-expected lift in industrial output offset by inflation and retail sales data which disappointed to the downside. In March, the unemployment rate held steady at 2.5%, in line with […]
Japan just delivered a mixed report card on how its economy is faring
Markets

We just received another sign that the global economy is slowing down

Japan’s manufacturing sector grew modestly in April, helped by strength in domestic demand. New export orders — a lead indicator on global demand — fell for the first time in nearly two years. IHS Markit will release manufacturing and services PMI reports for Europe and the United States later today. […]
We just received another sign that the global economy is slowing down
Markets

Japanese wages are still going backwards after inflation

Annual wage growth in Japan has fallen in real terms in each of the past three months. That appears to be impacting household spending which fell heavily in the year to February. Falling real wages are crimping the purchasing power of households, placing downside pressure on consumption and inflationary pressures. […]
Japanese wages are still going backwards after inflation
Markets

The Nikkei is getting destroyed

When you’re a large, trade-reliant economy watching your two major trading partners raising tariffs against each other, potentially starting a new trade war, your stock market is unlikely to have a good day. And throw in having a currency that’s deemed to be a safe-haven in times of market volatility, […]
The Nikkei is getting destroyed
Markets

Deutsche says the Japanese yen is going to get a lot stronger

The Japanese yen has rallied 5.9% against the US dollar this year. Deutsche Bank expects that trend to continue citing changes in fund flows, BoJ asset purchases and current valuations. It sees the USD/JPY falling to 100 this year before it finds support. The Japanese yen, like so many other […]
Deutsche says the Japanese yen is going to get a lot stronger
Markets

Japan’s already low unemployment rate just got whole lot lower

Japan’s unemployment rate tumbled to the lowest level since 1993 in January There are currently 159 jobs available for every 100 Japanese job seekers Despite worker shortages and stronger economic conditions, real wage growth is going backwards Japan’s already low unemployment rate just got whole lot lower. According to data […]
Japan’s already low unemployment rate just got whole lot lower
Markets

Inflationary pressures are building around the world — even in Japan

Both headline and core CPI in Japan sit the highest level since March 2015 Despite a lift in inflationary pressures, core CPI still remains less than half the Bank of Japan’s 2% annual target Most of the increase in January reflected higher energy prices Inflationary pressures appear to be building […]
Inflationary pressures are building around the world — even in Japan
Markets

Japan’s manufacturing sector is purring like a well-oiled machine

Activity levels continue to improve across Japan’s mammoth manufacturing sector Employment grew at the fastest pace in 11 years in February Markets will receive PMI reports on manufacturing and services from the US and Eurozone later today Japan’s manufacturing sector was purring like a well-oiled machine in February, according to […]
Japan’s manufacturing sector is purring like a well-oiled machine
Markets

Nikkei futures are down 8%

It looks like Tuesday will be a pretty nasty session for stock investors across Asia, especially those in Japan. Wall Street just suffered its largest decline in years, volatility has spiked to levels not seen since August 2015, and the Japanese yen has rallied across the board — including by […]
Nikkei futures are down 8%
Markets

The Japanese yen has suddenly spiked

The Japanese yen in flying in Asia, surging by around 0.5% against the US dollar. Having hit a high of 113.18 earlier in the session, the USD/JPY is now trading at 112.55, a decrease of 0.47%. “The Bank of Japan (BoJ) on Tuesday reduced the amount of its buying in […]
The Japanese yen has suddenly spiked
Markets

Japan’s economy grew way faster than first thought in the September quarter

Japanese GDP grew double the pace initially reported in Q3, helped by upward revisions to business investment and private inventories. The increase was higher than any individual forecast offered to Thomson Reuters. The economy has now expanded for seven consecutive quarters, the longest stretch of uninterrupted growth since early 2001. […]
Japan’s economy grew way faster than first thought in the September quarter
Markets

Japan’s economy lost momentum last quarter

Japanese economic growth decelerated sharply in the September quarter. According to preliminary estimates from Japan’s Cabinet Office, real GDP grew by 0.3%, decelerating sharply on the 0.6% pace of the previous quarter. The result was in line with market expectations. It was also the seventh consecutive quarter that real GDP […]
Japan’s economy lost momentum last quarter
Markets

The Japanese stock market just went haywire

Japanese stocks have gone haywire on Thursday afternoon, reversing sharply in the past few minutes after scaling fresh multi-decade highs earlier in the session. Just look at the one-minute chart of the TOPIX! Oof. It had been up as much as 1.5% earlier in the session but it’s now down […]
The Japanese stock market just went haywire
Markets

The Japanese yen just dived to a multi-month low

The Japanese yen has been slammed lower in Asian trade on Monday, falling to a eight-month low against the US dollar. Here’s the 5-minute USD/JPY chart. And here’s the USD/JPY daily chart showing the yen at its weakest level since mid-March. The sudden bout of weakness appears to have been […]
The Japanese yen just dived to a multi-month low
Markets

Japanese inflationary pressures remain close to non-existent

Japanese inflationary pressures remain incredibly weak, despite an in improvement in economic conditions. According to figures released by the Japanese government, consumer price inflation (CPI) rose by 0.7% in the year to September, a result that was unchanged from August. Core CPI, excluding fresh food prices and of more importance […]
Japanese inflationary pressures remain close to non-existent
Markets

Japan’s manufacturing sector lost a bit of momentum in October

Japan’s manufacturing sector remains solid if not spectacular with activity levels improving at a slightly slower pace in September compared to the month earlier. The latest Nikkei-IHS Markit flash manufacturing purchasing managers index (PMI) came in at 52.5 in October, down marginally on the 52.9 level of September. This PMI […]
Japan’s manufacturing sector lost a bit of momentum in October
Markets

This is the real reason Japanese stocks are rallying

Japanese stocks have been on a tear in October, closing higher in each of the past 15 sessions, the longest winning streak on record. On Monday, the Nikkei 225 added 1.11%, closing the session at 21,696.65 points, leaving it at the highest level since July 1996. Just look at the […]
This is the real reason Japanese stocks are rallying
Markets

The BoJ isn’t buying anywhere near as many bonds as it used to

The Bank of Japan (BoJ) has been on a bond-buying spree for several years now. Like other major central banks such as the US Federal Reserve, the European Central Bank, and the Bank of England, it has used quantitative easing, or QE, in an attempt to help reflate asset prices, […]
The BoJ isn’t buying anywhere near as many bonds as it used to
Markets

Japan’s manufacturing sector continues to strengthen

Japan’s manufacturing sector continued to strengthen in September, according to data released by IHS Markit today. The group’s flash manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) rose 0.4 points to 52.6, leaving it at a four-month high. The PMI measures perceived changes in activity levels across Japan’s manufacturing sector from one month […]
Japan’s manufacturing sector continues to strengthen
Markets

The Bank of Japan just showed how dull the country’s economy is right now

The Bank of Japan (BoJ) produced few surprises at its September monetary policy meeting, keeping interest rates, asset purchases and its assessment on the Japanese economy unchanged from July. Voting 8-1 in favour of the measure, the BoJ board maintained its quantitative and qualitative monetary easing (QQE) with yield curve […]
The Bank of Japan just showed how dull the country’s economy is right now
Markets

Japanese economic growth has been significantly downgraded

Japan’s economy didn’t grow as fast as first thought in the June quarter. According to data released by the government today, real GDP grew by 0.6% in the three months to June, missing forecasts for an increase of 0.7%. It was also well below the 1% pace that had been […]
Japanese economic growth has been significantly downgraded
Markets

Japan’s job market continues to ooze strength

Japanese labour market conditions remain incredibly strong, according to data released by the Japanese government today. However, it’s not been enough to lift household spending levels. The national unemployment rate held steady at 2.8% in July, leaving it sitting at the equal-lowest level since October 1993. The result was in […]
Japan’s job market continues to ooze strength
Markets

Japan has just provided another signal that the global economy is doing OK

Activity levels across Japan’s manufacturing sector improved in August, according to data released by IHS Markit today. The group’s flash manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) rose 0.7 points to 52.8, leaving it at a three-month high. The PMI measures changes in activity levels across Japan’s manufacturing sector from one month […]
Japan has just provided another signal that the global economy is doing OK
Markets

CHART: The popularity of Japan’s Abe government has been plummeting

Recent political developments in Japan have caught the attention of markets, especially the rapid decline in Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s approval rating. This chart from Nomura shows the recent fall, and includes the approval ratings of the current government’s two main competitors: Given the recent slump, Nomura’s currency strategists have […]
CHART: The popularity of Japan’s Abe government has been plummeting
Markets

Japanese economic data out today looked pretty good

The Japanese economy is looking pretty good in 2017, with readings on inflation, unemployment and household spending all performing well in June. On the prices front, core consumer price inflation (CPI), which excludes fresh food prices, grew by 0.4% in the year to June, a result that was in line […]
Japanese economic data out today looked pretty good
Markets

The Bank of Japan upgraded its forecasts for growth

SYDNEY — The Bank of Japan (BoJ) held monetary policy steady at the conclusion of its July monetary policy meeting, an outcome widely expected by financial markets and economists. it also upped its economic assessment and forecasts for GDP growth while downgrading its view on the outlook for inflation. Again, […]
The Bank of Japan upgraded its forecasts for growth
Markets

Japan’s workers are enjoying the biggest wages boom since 2000

Japan’s labour market is, on the surface, incredibly strong right now. The national unemployment rate sits at just 3.1% while the jobs-to-applicants ratio — simply the number of jobs available compared to those seeking work — now stands at the highest level since February 1974. Despite those mind-boggling figures, the […]
Japan’s workers are enjoying the biggest wages boom since 2000
Markets

CHART: It’s a great time to be looking for work in Japan

It’s a pretty good time to be looking for work in Japan right now. Just look at the chart below as evidence. It’s the nation’s jobs-to-applicants ratio, measuring the number of jobs currently available to those looking for work. At 1.49, it currently stands at the highest level since February […]
CHART: It’s a great time to be looking for work in Japan
Markets

Don’t look now, but inflationary pressures are building in Japan

SYDNEY — Here’s something you don’t hear every day: there are signs of inflationary pressures in Japan. Data from the Japanese government shows consumer price inflation (CPI), excluding fresh food prices, rose by 0.4% in the 12 months to May, hitting the highest level since March 2015. The figure was […]
Don’t look now, but inflationary pressures are building in Japan
Markets

Japan’s manufacturing sector is slowing down

Activity levels across Japan’s manufacturing sector grew at the slowest pace in seven months in June. The Nikkei-IHS Markit flash manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) fell to 52.0 from 53.1, leaving it at the lowest level since December last year. The PMI measures changes in activity levels across Japan’s manufacturing […]
Japan’s manufacturing sector is slowing down
Markets

Japanese imports and exports are growing at the fastest pace in years

Japan’s trade balance swung back into deficit in May, driven by a surge in energy exports. However, looking into the detail of the report, it’s clear that demand from both within Japan and abroad continues to improve, adding to evidence that the global economy continues to strengthen. According to Japan’s […]
Japanese imports and exports are growing at the fastest pace in years
Markets

There was no Friday surprise from the Bank of Japan today

The Bank of Japan (BoJ) is a central bank that always seems to have a surprise up its sleeve when it comes to monetary policy decisions. Anyone looking for a shock decision today would have been disappointed, however, as it chose to keep monetary policy steady at the conclusion of […]
There was no Friday surprise from the Bank of Japan today
Markets

Japan’s manufacturing sector experienced a broad-based slowdown in May

Activity levels across Japan’s manufacturing sector improved at a slower pace in May, according to the lastest Nikkei-IHS Markit “flash” manufacturing purchasing managers index (PMI) released today. The headline PMI came in at 52.0, down from 52.7 in April. It was a six-month low. The PMI measures changes in activity […]
Japan’s manufacturing sector experienced a broad-based slowdown in May
Markets

The global economy is looking OK, based on Japan’s latest trade report

Japanese export and import growth slowed in April compared to a month earlier, but both remained firmly in positive territory. A good sign for the broader global economy given the sheer size of the nation’s trade-exposed sectors. According to Japan’s Ministry of Finance, the value of exports grew by 7.5% […]
The global economy is looking OK, based on Japan’s latest trade report
Markets

CHART: Japanese unemployment tumbles to the lowest level since 1994

You’d be pretty chuffed if you were looking for a job in Japan right now. As seen in the chart below, the nation’s unemployment rate tumbled to just 2.8% in seasonally adjusted terms in February, the lowest level since June 1994. The Japanese government said that the nation’s jobs-to-applicants ratio […]
CHART: Japanese unemployment tumbles to the lowest level since 1994
Markets

Japan is still struggling to build inflationary pressures

Japanese inflationary pressures moderated in February. However, with forward-looking indicators looking weak, there’s a risk that prices might start to weaken again in the months ahead. According to figures released by the Japanese government on Friday, headline consumer price inflation rose by 0.3% in the year to February, below the […]
Japan is still struggling to build inflationary pressures
Markets

Japan’s manufacturers enjoyed a strong start to the year

The positive momentum in Japan’s manufacturing sector cooled slightly in March. The Nikkei-IHS Markit “flash” manufacturing purchasing managers index (PMI) came in at 52.6, down from 53.3 in February. It was the lowest reading since December last year. The PMI measures changes in activity levels across Japan’s manufacturing sector from […]
Japan’s manufacturers enjoyed a strong start to the year
Markets

Japanese exports surged in February as China returned from holidays

Japanese exports surged in February, logging the largest year-on-year increase in over two years. However, it was largely driven by one-off factors, keeping optimism over the result in check. According to Japan’s Ministry of Finance (MOF), exports grew by 11.3% from the levels of a year earlier, above the 10.6% […]
Japanese exports surged in February as China returned from holidays
Markets

The Bank of Japan leaves policy unchanged

The Bank of Japan has left monetary policy unchanged at the conclusion of its March policy meeting, a decision that was unilaterally expected by financial markets. Voting 7-2 in favour of the measure, the bank left interest rates unchanged and -0.1% and pledged to purchase Japanese government bonds so that […]
The Bank of Japan leaves policy unchanged
Markets

Japan’s economy lifts as business investment shows signs of life

Japan’s economy grew faster than first thought in the final three months of 2016. According to Japan’s Cabinet Office, real GDP grew by 0.3% in the December quarter, higher than the 0.2% preliminary reading issued in February. Despite the upgrade, it fell short of the 0.4% figure that had been […]
Japan’s economy lifts as business investment shows signs of life
Markets

Japan’s manufacturing sector hasn’t looked this good in years

Japan’s manufacturing sector enjoyed another strong month in February with activity levels improving at the fastest pace in nearly three years. The Nikkei-IHS Markit “flash” manufacturing purchasing managers index (PMI) rose to 53.5 in February, above the 52.7 level of January and the highest level since March 2014. The PMI […]
Japan’s manufacturing sector hasn’t looked this good in years
Markets

Toshiba is going to delay its results and the stock is tanking

Shares in Japan’s Toshiba Corp. plunged as much as 9% after it missed releasing earnings on time on Tuesday and didn’t clarify when it planned would provide them. The beleaguered company, which warned of possible writedowns in December at its nuclear power business, was slated to release its nine-months and […]
Toshiba is going to delay its results and the stock is tanking
Markets

Japanese economic growth underwhelmed in late 2016

Japanese economic growth slowed sharply in the final three months of 2016, according to data released by the government on Monday. The economy grew by 0.2% in the December quarter, missing expectations for an increase of 0.3%. The slowdown also appears to be part of a broader theme, having grown […]
Japanese economic growth underwhelmed in late 2016
Markets

Japanese bond yields just surged higher

Japanese government bond yields rose to one-year highs after the Bank of Japan disappointed investors by not buying bonds with maturities of 25 years or more. The 10-year benchmark JGB yield rose to as high as 0.150%, its highest since January 2016. The 20-year yield hit 0.710%, its highest since […]
Japanese bond yields just surged higher
Markets

Yen gains as the Bank of Japan leaves rates on hold

The Japanese yen strengthened while the Nikkei ceded some ground after the Bank of Japan left monetary policy unchanged and raised its economic growth forecast. A short while ago the yen was at 113.29 per US dollar, up 0.4% from Monday, when it had added 1.2%. The Nikkei 225 was […]
Yen gains as the Bank of Japan leaves rates on hold
Markets

The Bank of Japan left monetary policy unchanged

The Bank of Japan (BoJ) left monetary policy unchanged at the conclusion of its January meeting, a decision that was almost unilaterally expected by financial markets. Voting 7-2, the bank decided to retain its quantitative and qualitative monetary easing (QQE) with yield curve control program, keeping interest rates unchanged at […]
The Bank of Japan left monetary policy unchanged
Markets

Japanese exports posted their largest annual increase in over a year

Japanese trade data for December has come in mixed, with strong growth in exports offset by a steeper decline in imports. According to Japan’s Ministry of Finance, exports grew by 5.4% in the 12 months to December, above the 1.2% increase expected by economists and 0.4% contraction reported in the […]
Japanese exports posted their largest annual increase in over a year
Markets

The Bank of Japan has left monetary policy unchanged

The Bank of Japan’s December monetary policy has just concluded, and they’ve done nothing. Its so-called “quantitative and qualitative monetary easing (QQE) with yield curve control” was left unchanged by a majority vote of seven to two. The bank pledged to purchase Japanese government bonds (JGBs) at an annual pace […]
The Bank of Japan has left monetary policy unchanged
Markets

Japanese economic growth has been revised sharply lower

Just three weeks ago the Japanese economy was looking swell. According to preliminary GDP estimates offered by the government, the economy expanded at a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) of 2.2% in the September quarter, the fastest pace seen seen since the March quarter 2015. Great news, a strong result […]
Japanese economic growth has been revised sharply lower
Markets

Japan’s manufacturing sector grew for a fourth straight month in November

Activity levels across Japan’s manufacturing sector continued to improve in November, albeit at a slower pace than October. The Nikkei-Markit flash manufacturing purchasing managers index (PMI) came in at 51.1, down fractionally on the 51.4 level reported previously. The PMI measures changes in activity levels from one month to the […]
Japan’s manufacturing sector grew for a fourth straight month in November
Markets

Japan’s economy put in a remarkably strong performance last quarter

Japanese economic growth easily topped expectations in the September quarter according to preliminary figures released by the government on Monday. The economy expanded at a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) of 2.2% for the quarter, well ahead of the 0.9% increase expected. It was well above the 0.7% expansion in […]
Japan’s economy put in a remarkably strong performance last quarter
Markets

ANZ thinks the Japanese yen could be about to get a whole lot weaker

The Japanese yen could be about to get a whole lot weaker, says ANZ. According to Daniel Been and Giulia Lavina Specchia, members of the bank’s FX strategy and economics team, if inflationary pressures in the US start to accelerate, it could see the yen weaken substantially in the period […]
ANZ thinks the Japanese yen could be about to get a whole lot weaker
Markets

The Nikkei in Japan is down over 5%

The Nikkei 225 index in Japan, like other markets around the world, is crumbling. It’s currently down over 5%. The Japanese yen is soaring on heightened risk aversion with the USDJPY now down 3.33% at 101.66 Here’s how other markets are faring across the region: Stocks ASX 200 5142.40 , […]
The Nikkei in Japan is down over 5%
Markets

The Bank of Japan left policy unchanged in November

The Bank of Japan refrained from tweaking monetary policy at its November monetary policy meeting, keeping interest rates and its target for the 10-year JGB yield at -0.1% and 0% respectively. The vote was passed 7 to 2. It also stated that it would purchase Japanese government bonds (JGBs) at […]
The Bank of Japan left policy unchanged in November
Markets

Japan’s latest batch of economic data continued to disappoint

Japanese retail sales and industrial output have both missed expectations in September. According to the Ministry of Economics, Trade and Industry (METI), retail sales fell by 1.9% in the year to September, fractionally below the median economist forecast that was looking for a drop of 1.8%. In August, sales dipped […]
Japan’s latest batch of economic data continued to disappoint
Markets

Japan still can’t shake deflation

There’s still no signs of inflation stirring in Japan, despite the best efforts of policymakers. But outside of price developments, the news elsewhere was OK. According to Japanese government, consumer price inflation (CPI) fell by 0.5% in the year to September, unchanged from the decline reported in August and in […]
Japan still can’t shake deflation
Markets

Japan’s trade balance swung back to the black in September

Japan’s trade balance swung back to surplus in September, thanks in part to better performance from exports. According to Japan’s Ministry of Finance (MOF), a trade surplus of 498.3 billion yen was recorded, higher than the 341.8 billion figure expected and a sharp turnaround from the 18.7 billion yen deficit […]
Japan’s trade balance swung back to the black in September
Markets

Japan just released a raft of data and most of it was really weak

Be it the Bank of Japan or the government, policymakers in Japan will not be pleased with the latest batch of economic data that’s just hit. It’s weak, and that’s putting it mildly. At the top of that list is inflation, or should we say deflation. According to Japan’s statistics […]
Japan just released a raft of data and most of it was really weak
Markets

Japanese consumers simply refuse to be stimulated

No matter what stimulus policymakers throw at Japanese consumers, it’s just not having an impact – at least not yet. According to data released by the Japan’s Ministry of Economic, Trade and Industry (METI) released on Thursday, retail sales slipped by 1.1% in August, leaving the year-on-year decline at 2.1% […]
Japanese consumers simply refuse to be stimulated
Markets

There’s finally signs of life in Japan’s manufacturing sector

Activity levels across Japan’s manufacturing sector improved for the first time in seven months in September, albeit by the smallest of margins. The Nikkei-Markit flash manufacturing purchasing managers’ index (PMI) rose by 0.8 points to 50.3 in September, marking the first time since February that the index printed above the […]
There’s finally signs of life in Japan’s manufacturing sector
Markets

The stronger yen continues to hurt Japanese exporters

Japanese trade data continued to underwhelm in August, although not to the scale seen in July. According to the Japanese government, exports fell by 9.6% in the 12 months to August in yen-denominated terms, missing expectations for a smaller contraction of 4.8%. Although an ugly headline figure, it was an […]
The stronger yen continues to hurt Japanese exporters