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Dec 19, 2014

BOJ maintains massive stimulus, offers brighter view on economy

TOKYO (Reuters) – The Bank of Japan maintained its massive monetary stimulus on Friday and offered a brighter view of the economy, clinging to hope that joint efforts with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to revitalize the economy will prod companies into boosting wages and investment.

The rate review was the first since Abe’s landslide victory in a Dec. 14 election that gave him a fresh mandate to continue efforts to pull Japan out of 15 years of grinding deflation.

Dec 18, 2014

Bank of Japan to stand pat, may join Abe in calling for wage hikes

TOKYO (Reuters) – The Bank of Japan is set to keep monetary policy steady on Friday and may offer a brighter view of the economy, clinging to hope that joint efforts with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to reflate the economy will prod companies into boosting wages and investment.

The rate review will be the first since Abe’s landslide victory in a Dec. 14 election that gave him a fresh mandate to continue efforts to pull Japan out of 15 years of grinding deflation.

Dec 18, 2014

Japan PM expected to tip BOJ board closer to his views in 2015

TOKYO (Reuters) – Two vacancies opening up in the Bank of Japan next year give premier Shinzo Abe a chance to tip the board’s balance in favor of further monetary stimulus, removing a headache for his hand-picked central bank head.

The board’s composition has taken on greater significance after Governor Haruhiko Kuroda won a tight 5-4 vote in October’s surprise expansion of an already radical monetary experiment that pumps roughly $84 billion each month into the economy.

Dec 18, 2014

Japan to spend up to $30 billion in stimulus, keep bond issuance in check

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan will spend up to $30 billion in a stimulus package to revive the country’s regions but will keep new bond issuance in check, sources say, highlighting the tough balance Prime Minister Shinzo Abe must strike between lifting growth and fixing Tokyo’s tattered finances.

With his landslide win in Sunday’s election giving him a fresh mandate to end 15 years of deflation, Abe has pledged to push through his “Abenomics” stimulus policies including the missing third arrow of structural and fiscal reforms.

Dec 16, 2014

BOJ to stand pat as Abe’s poll win offers hope in deflation fight

TOKYO (Reuters) – Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s landslide victory in Sunday’s vote may be a double-edged sword for the Bank of Japan, which is looking to work with Abe to push for wage growth but may also face pressure to expand stimulus to bolster the fragile economy.

At the two-day meeting ending on Friday, which is the last review for the year, the central bank is widely expected to keep monetary settings unchanged and offer a slightly brighter view of the economy on tentative signs of recovery from recession, sources say.

Dec 15, 2014

BOJ survey shows Japan business mood fragile, makes Abe’s task harder

TOKYO (Reuters) – Confidence among Japanese manufacturers worsened slightly in the fourth quarter and firms expect conditions to deteriorate more, highlighting the challenges premier Shinzo Abe faces in reviving the economy a day after his big win in Sunday’s snap election.

The headline index measuring big manufacturers’ sentiment stood at plus 12, down 1 point from three months ago and worse than a median market forecast of plus 13, the Bank of Japan’s closely-watched “tankan” survey showed on Monday.

Dec 12, 2014

BOJ seen offering rosier economic view next week: sources

TOKYO (Reuters) – The Bank of Japan is likely to offer a more upbeat view of the economy than last month when it meets for a rate review next week, sources say, as exports and factory output pick up in a tentative sign of recovery from a tax-hike induced recession.

But any upgrade will be minor as central bankers are hardly complacent on the outlook with recent surveys showing that slow wage growth and the rising cost of living are hurting household sentiment.

Dec 9, 2014

BOJ survey to show recovery in Japan business mood running flat

TOKYO (Reuters) – Business confidence was roughly flat in the fourth quarter among big Japanese firms and worsened for smaller ones, a key central bank survey is likely to show on Monday, highlighting the uneven recovery brought by premier Shinzo Abe’s stimulus policies.

The Bank of Japan’s closely-watched “tankan” survey will come out a day after a snap election that media says will result in a landslide victory for Abe, giving him a fresh mandate to pursue policies aimed at ending a 15-year phase of deflation.

Dec 8, 2014

BOJ increasingly likely to cut price forecasts -sources

TOKYO, Dec 8 (Reuters) – The Bank of Japan looks
increasingly likely to cut its inflation forecasts next month,
sources say, making its target of 2 percent in the year from
April look ever more ambitious, just three months after it eased
monetary policy to keep the goal in sight.

The BOJ surprised markets on Oct. 31 with its decision to
flood the market with cash to counter the effect of slumping oil
prices and weak domestic demand on inflation expectations, but
oil prices have fallen 15 percent since then.

Dec 8, 2014

Japan’s third-quarter economic contraction bigger than expected

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan’s economic contraction in July-September was deeper than initially expected on declines in capital expenditure, according to revised data on Monday that backs Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s recent decision to delay a second sales tax hike.

The data indicated that the hit from April’s sales tax hike turned out to be bigger than expected.