Tuesday, December 03, 2013

Your Tuesday Japan Update

Japan continues to print mountains of money, monetizing their out-of-control government's debt. The goal is to finally see some inflation as they've had recessionary deflation for years and years.

TOKYO—Prices in Japan posted strong gains in October while the labor market also improved, indications that the country is on its way to shaking off 15 years of deflation.

The government said that the core consumer price index, which excludes fresh food prices, rose 0.9% in October from a year earlier. That was the highest since November 2008, matching the rise forecast by economists. It marked the fifth straight month of increases.
Err, don't get excited just yet.
Many economists say recent rises in core CPI are largely due to increased costs of energy and other imported goods on the back of the yen's depreciation rather than growing demand for products
All that inflation must mean a growing economy, right? Not really.
TOKYO—Japan's economic expansion appears to be back in slow motion, with new figures showing corporate investment, a key driver of broader growth, yet to take off as the government hoped...

According to the survey, capital spending declined 0.5% from the April-June period on a seasonally adjusted basis, instead of growing modestly as estimated in the preliminary GDP data released on Nov. 14. That suggests the GDP figures for the quarter will likely be revised down.
This seems to indicate that there might be something more complicated at work and that piles of printed money may not make an economy flourish after all. Crazy, I know, but it could be true.

Meanwhile, our genius vice president, visiting a nation in a total demographic death spiral where they're selling more adult diapers than baby diapers, is praising Japan for putting more women in the workforce.

He's brilliant. Just brilliant.

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