Correspondent, Commodities and Energy
James's Feed
Apr 17, 2014

Japan Inc resilient in face of sales tax rise: Reuters poll

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japanese companies have weathered the first days of a rise in the country’s consumption tax, with sales resilient and pricing power little damaged, a Reuters poll showed on Friday, in an early sign the tax hike will not derail the economy.

This good news for “Abenomics” bolsters the Bank of Japan’s view that it does not need to ease policy further to cushion the impact from the tax, which Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s government raised on April 1 to help curb the nation’s mountain of public debt.

Apr 11, 2014

Marubeni sold soy cargo defaulted on by China buyer – sources

SINGAPORE/TOKYO, April 11 (Reuters) – At least one soybean
cargo defaulted on by Chinese importers was sold by Japan’s
Marubeni Corp, three sources said, as slowing demand
and tightening credit in the world’s top soybean importer hits
oilseed trade.

Marubeni is one of the biggest soybean exporters to China,
shipping 15 million to 16 million tonnes a year along with
Gavilon, which it bought last year, or about a quarter of the
country’s annual imports of 60 million tonnes.

Apr 11, 2014

Marubeni sold at least one soy cargo defaulted on by China buyer-sources

SINGAPORE/TOKYO, April 11 (Reuters) – At least one soybean
cargo defaulted on by Chinese importers was sold by Japan’s
Marubeni Corp, three sources said, as slowing demand
and tightening credit in the world’s top importer hits oilseed
trade.

Marubeni is one of the biggest soybean exporters to China,
shipping 15-16 million tonnes a year along with Gavilon which it
bought last year, or about a quarter of the nation’s annual
imports of 60 million tonnes.

Apr 2, 2014

Another Japan nuclear operator turns to government for aid

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan’s Kyushu Electric Power Co has become the second nuclear generator to seek state support this week as reactors across the country remain idled and industry losses mount three years after the Fukushima nuclear disaster.

Kyushu Electric, a regional monopoly that supplies power in southern Japan, said on Wednesday it was in talks with state-owned Development Bank of Japan for financial backing. On Tuesday, a source said Hokkaido Electric Power Co, which supplies Japan’s northernmost island, had asked the same bank for financial assistance.

Mar 31, 2014

Asia takes more Iran crude in Feb than nuclear deal allows

SINGAPORE/TOKYO, March 31 (Reuters) – Iran’s top four crude
oil buyers lifted their purchases 17.2 percent in February from
a year ago, as the OPEC member continues to ship more oil than
allowed under a deal that eases some of the sanctions aimed at
its disputed nuclear programme.

Under the interim agreement reached in November between Iran
and six major powers and that took effect in January, the
Islamic nation is supposed to hold its exports at an average of
1 million barrels per day (bpd) for the six months to July 20.

Mar 20, 2014

Japan Inc more upbeat on tax-hike rebound, sees profit growth: Reuters poll

TOKYO (Reuters) – Large Japanese firms are growing more confident about weathering the impact of an imminent sales tax increase and they expect further profit rises even after a bumper year, a Reuters poll showed – encouraging signs for an economy that is seeing a sharp slowdown in growth.

While the sales tax hike to 8 percent from 5 percent on April 1 is necessary to bolster the country’s finances, many fear that it could wallop consumer sentiment and derail the success Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has had with weakening the yen to help exporters and with boosting stocks and corporate profits.

Mar 19, 2014

Japan Inc sees BOJ easing further as sales-tax hike looms – Reuters poll

TOKYO (Reuters) – Almost two-thirds of Japanese firms expect the Bank of Japan will increase its stimulus in the first six months of 2014, a Reuters poll showed, underscoring the pressure on the central bank to remain the engine of growth under Abenomics.

The results of the monthly Reuters Corporate Survey also showed broad support for the toughest economic policy decision Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is likely to face in the year ahead – pushing ahead with a further sales-tax increase to 10 percent.

Mar 13, 2014

COFCO deals threaten to undermine Marubeni’s China dreams

TOKYO, March 13 (Reuters) – Chinese trader COFCO Corp’s
move to grab control of two overseas grains
operations in the space of a week threatens to limit the
benefits Japan’s Marubeni Corp hoped to reap in the
world’s largest food market.

The Japanese trader’s purchase of U.S. grain merchant
Gavilon last year made it China’s top grains supplier. The
advantage of that firepower could be curbed as China develops
its own global agriculture trading house.

Mar 5, 2014

Even as Japan baulks at trade concessions, farmers move on

CHIBA CITY, Japan, March 6 (Reuters) – When it comes to
trade policy, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe faces a choice between
the fears of Japan’s ageing farm lobby and the hopes of suburban
families lined up here at a nearly 20-metre long meat counter in
a mall showcasing Australian beef.

When Aeon Co set out to open a flagship shopping
mall just outside Tokyo, it wanted the scale to dazzle urban
shoppers. The three-month-old Makuhari New City mall in Chiba is
almost four times larger than the Tokyo Dome, a 55,000-seat
stadium in the heart of the capital.

Feb 21, 2014

Japan firms resist government pressure to lift base wages: Reuters survey

TOKYO (Reuters) – Fewer than one in five Japanese companies plan to raise base wages in the coming business year, a Reuters survey shows, a stark sign that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s stimulus policies are still struggling to gain traction.

Some big names, like Toyota Motor Corp (7203.T: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), are expected to raise base pay, but the bulk of companies in the Reuters Corporate Survey say they will at most raise bonuses, which can easily be reversed if the economic recovery lapses.