Japan’s 2% Inflation Target Remains Elusive

The Bank of Japan's massive stimulus program has so far failed to get Japan's economy anywhere near the BOJ's 2% inflation target.

Other economic indicators were mixed. This is from the Associated Press (June 26):

Japan says its core inflation rate excluding volatile food prices slipped to a meager 0.1 percent in May, though the unemployment rate was flat at 3.3 percent and household spending rose for the first time in over a year.

The data released Friday followed relatively weak indicators showing softening demand and slowing industrial production. Economists say the world's third-largest economy slowed or possibly contracted in the April-June quarter.

Japan's central bank is pumping unprecedented sums of cash into the economy, seeking to push prices higher and spur inflation.

But, as Bloomberg reports (June 26), even the positive news about the rise in household spending comes with a caveat:

The rebound in household spending last month only partly reversed a drop in April and was weaker than expected.

Here's another excerpt from the Bloomberg article:

Japan's economy is slowing to a halt this quarter, JPMorgan Chase & Co. said Friday, cutting its growth estimate on a drag from trade and weaker-than-expected consumer spending.

The world's third-biggest economy will mark zero growth in the three months through June, JPMorgan economist Masamichi Adachi said in a report, lowering a previous forecast for an annualized expansion of 1.5 percent.

"Incoming hard data related to consumption have been consistently weaker than our expectation," Adachi wrote. A "large" decline in Japan's net trade reported last week also dimmed his estimate for growth in the quarter.

You can read the entire story by clicking on the link below:

Enter your email address to get email updates and special offers.
It's free!

* By submitting this form you authorize EWI to send regular emails and updates. You may unsubscribe from our mailing list at any time.