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Japan consumer prices up 0.1% in May; jobless rate 3.3%

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jobless rate 3.3%

lol, good one.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Analysts say the central bank will almost certainly be forced to expand its monetary easing scheme to jack up prices and counter a downturn in economy.

Isn't the central bank's current policy of buying up 80 trillion yen worth of assets each year enough?

Why do those analysts think the central bank will buy even more? What exactly are they analyzing? Do they think the central bank buying even more assets than it already is would do the economy any good?

Separate data from the internal affairs ministry showed household spending rose 4.8% on-year in May, posting the first rise since Japan raised sales taxes in April last year

This suggests the downturn after the sales tax hike was temporary. In future though one hopes the government will reform its out of control spending, rather than extract more money from the people.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Yippee. Prices are going up faster than incomes. Winning. (sarc)

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Japanese consumer prices grew a tepid 0.1% year-on-year in May

Sure they did. My rent went up by 10%. My electricity went up by 10%. The meat I buy went up by 15%. The packages of cheese I buy have less slices, but cost more.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

gaijinfo

Sure they did. My rent went up by 10%. The meat I buy went up by 15%

Sounds like you're living and shopping in the wrong place.

The whole problem with non-cp inflation in Japan is that prices aren't going up, the size of the products are just getting smaller and made with cheaper products.

Kuroda's inflation target was always a joke, as I and others pointed out, in a shrinking consumer base. The price of fuel and energy costs are very weak variables on Japanese core inflation because, as noted, fuel prices might be cheaper, but energy costs are still rising.

All in all these figures are just more bad news on more bad news for the BOJ. Consumer spending had no way up, after the tax hike shock of last year and anyone who lives in Japan knows that Japan has a very liberal take on who and when people are unemployed. Besides, I don't know what is happening in Hiroo or Roppongi, but round my way, the local izakayas are still offering Y900 an hour.

Kuroda was an idiot from the start and he was conned, by Abe, into allowing the LDP and their cronies to continue spending the public wealth. Now his beloved BOJ is the biggest owner of government debt and can't get out, if it wanted to. Who now is stupid enough to buy Japanese government bonds, apart from the BOJ?

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

At this rate, it should only be 20 more years before Kuroda and Abe meet their inflation target.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

The jobless rate was unchanged at an 18-year low of 3.3% in May.< What is the workforce participation rate?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

consumer prices up 0.1%

that should be an average. Individual prices should be much more /worse than this.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

I'm not that computer savvy but I wish there were a web site where consumers could go to paste a pic of the hidden inflation, or, how a product has shrunk in size or quality for all to see. Someone is missing a great opportunity to make some cash with this. Consumer power is the only way.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Individual prices

Who cares about that? There is a reason why they measure inflation using a basket of goods instead of individual ones. There is too much fluctuation with individual goods to get an accurate measurement.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Analysts say the central bank will almost certainly be forced to expand its monetary easing scheme to jack up prices and counter a downturn in economy. -

Cannot help but think of Einstein's definition of insanity -- doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. Abe and Kuroda have now been doing it for over three years, with negligible results. And, Abenomics is just a warmed-over version of LDP pork-barrel spending that has been the rule for decades now -- all leaving Japan in the same economic slump since the bubble burst. Unbelievable that one of the world's most educated societies could allow this to happen.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Firstly, the 0.1% number includes energy prices. As Japan imports nearly all its fuel, inflation should be calculated excluding energy as its price is generally out of the governments hands. If so, the inflation rate would measure 0.4%.

Furthermore, it can be understood why fresh food is not included in the article's calculation due to "volatile" seasonal/weather factors. But food prices are also rising due to labor costs, harvesting, packaging, fertilizer costs, etc, and since this year's weather is not much different than last year nor has there been any major event (typhoon, drought, tsunami), then food should definitely be included as it is what people spend much of their income on. (FYI, the year-on-year rate for food inflation is 3.1%.)

So by not including food while also including energy (and not giving the stats to compare) it would seem that an effort is being made to make it seem that inflation is "low" in order to justify additional monetary stimulus. See all the inflation stats at http://www.stat.go.jp/english/data/cpi/1581.htm

2 ( +2 / -0 )

jerseyboy.

Unbelievable that one of the world's most educated societies could allow this to happen.

Depends what your definition of 'educated' is.

My definition would include critical thinking, based on a large corpus of facts and examples and an ability to opine in a rational and methodical way . Although never objective in the true sense of the word, aspires to the truth through the struggle to attain objectivity.

Abenomics could only survive for 3 years in a society like Japan. Along with the usual other classics of 'Japan is the only country with 4 seasons' and the recent one of abolishing the 3 year constraint on companies using dispatch workers will mean that there will be more opportunities for dispatch workers to become full time company workers.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Why doesn't the headline highlight the, as important, fig showing a rise in household spending by 4.8%? The article doesn't mention the figure realeased today regarding the increase in jobs to applicants ratio of 1.19 Japan's stats bureau unemployment/employment defintions are based on the ILO global standards. I never got a critical thinking class in my electrical engineering course in Australia. Is that a Edward DeBono class?
-2 ( +1 / -3 )

I think it is fairly obvious that the prices on everything is going UP because the quality of everything is getting BETTER.

We, who live in Japan should support this necessary redistribution of our monies to help out the elite make their decisions easier in regards to the working class.

It has been hard work to make Abenomics the glaring success it is, and we can show our undying support for Mr. Abe by continuing to believe this innovative, intelligent and progressive way into a "Beautiful Country"

Today we give thanks for all the hard work the politicians do to make our lives less burdened and give thanks for the utopia we will all be eventually living in.

Thank you utopias

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Japan consumer prices up 0.1% in May; jobless rate 3.3%

worse than illusion.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

divine intervention

Why doesn't the headline highlight the, as important, fig showing a rise in household spending by 4.8%?

4.8% from 12 months ago, when spending had crashed after the April tax hike.

The article doesn't mention the figure realeased today regarding the increase in jobs to applicants ratio of 1.19 Japan's stats bureau unemployment/employment defintions are based on the ILO global standards.

This is not exactly true. The Japanese stats bureau takes the best of both worlds. The ILO global standards to measure the employment rate, which determine that a person who has worked for one hour in a month is not unemployed, and it uses the Claimant Unemployment Rate standard to measure the unemployment rate.

Both figures result in a big distortion of the employment figures for Japan, especially the unemployment rate statistic. The second figure, how many people are unemployed, is greatly affected by the strict time limit placed on social security payments in Japan. Once people have used their unemployment benefits or they haven't paid enough contributions (I think it's 3 years in Japan), there is no reason for them to sign on as unemployed and they just drop off the radar statistics

Anyone living in Japan and among the Japanese know that the unemployment rate in Japan is probably double the government's claim and that is still not even taking into account the working poor in Japan, who by any true logic would not be considered employed since they have neither the number of working hours or the salary to live an independent existence from their families.

I never got a critical thinking class in my electrical engineering course in Australia.

Engineering and Australian! enough said.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Unfortunately my pay didn't go up .1%.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I've increasingly come to realise that, as a taxpayer in Japan, you're constantly expected... forced to sacrifice more of your own income "for the better of the country". Pays are going down, taxes are going up. It's a trickle-down economy in the worse sense, with the all-mighty oyaji Goliath at the top. Pork barelling the norm, kickbacks a plenty. No union movements, no justice. No accountability from employers, nor lawmakers. Just shouganaina, apathy and around we go. I've been here almost a decade and I've never seen it this bad - won't last much longer here.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Unfortunately my pay didn't go up .1%

Without knowing your basic pay , i can say you should feel lucky for not getting such a meager pay rise...:)

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@Gary Raynor,

4.8% increase in spending shows that the tax increase may be a temporary abberation or that the economy is improving enough to "loosen the purse" or both; its still a positive sign albeit being only a single month understand your take on the unemployment figures but is the definition of unemployment without ambiguity? Are housewives not looking for employment considered unemployed? Are the financially independent considered unemployed? Is the newly graduate not looking for employment considered unemployed? Other countries must also find it difficult to have an absolute definition of unemployed; I doubt the criteria by the Japanese is intended to be deliberately misleading. how much the working poor are paid is irrelevant and is a separate matter.

**Engineering and Australian! enough said. Cute.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

divine intervention

I doubt the criteria by the Japanese is intended to be deliberately misleading.

Novice

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

@Supey

Do you mean includes or excludes energy prices in that calculation?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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