Japan’s industrial production grew the most since 2011, indicating the economy is strengthening as a looming sales-tax bump stimulates demand, while inflation matched the highest level in more than five years.
Japan’s inflation accelerated in December, industrial output gained and a measure of demand for workers strengthened, signaling gains for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s campaign to end two decades of stagnation.
Japanese employers will fail in the next fiscal year to heed Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s goal of wage increases that outpace inflation, highlighting risks that the nation’s recovery will stall, surveys of economists show.
Investors were unfazed by Moody’s Investors Service’s decision today to lower Japan’s sovereign rating, unlike in the U.S., where Standard & Poor’s roiled global markets when it cut the U.S. AAA ranking for the first time on Aug. 5.
Japan unveiled a record budget for the next fiscal year, as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe boosts spending on social security, defense and public works while trying to contain the growth of the world’s biggest debt burden.
Japan’s wages rose for a fourth month as employers had staff work more hours instead of adding to payrolls, a trend that may sustain the recovery without reducing the economy’s reliance on exports to propel growth.