politics

Inflation, not deflation, is now Japan's political hot potato as election looms

31 Comments
By Leika Kihara and Daniel Leussink

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31 Comments
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its ironic that Japan finds 2% inflation too difficult while the rest of the world has this amount of inflation almost every year. the problem isnt the inflation its that the government doesnt force companies to increase wages at least what the inflation rate is. 1st thing they can do is increase the minium wage to 1200yen hr

15 ( +22 / -7 )

The problem is that the inflation is based on rising import prices rather than an expanding economy - the inflation money is going overseas.

17 ( +22 / -5 )

""While the rate of inflation is still modest by global comparisons, it has shocked a population that has not experienced steady inflation for decades and hasn't seen wages rise enough to compensate for the cost of living""

If wages are up to the level to handle inflation then we are all for it, but when wages are low and not increased then this is BAD for the economy and the population, that's when people revolt and things can get really ugly.

Japan has always been expensive due to the old mentality of the more expensive the better the product, that is long GONE now and proven to be WRONG.

11 ( +17 / -6 )

Soaring commodity costs, fueled by Russia's invasion of Ukraine

Fixed it.....

Soaring commodity costs, fueled by meaningless sanctions on Russia in a failed attempt to hurt the Russian economy, due to the invasion of Ukraine

3 ( +14 / -11 )

A flip flop announcement.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

My salary went down this year... again. Hopeless.

1 ( +14 / -13 )

Inflation is never good for the majority, and deflation is always good for the majority.

Economists just flat out lie about an economy needing inflation, only the top elites want inflation.

What is good according to economists have always been bad for most people.

9 ( +13 / -4 )

Inflation, not deflation, is now Japan's political hot potato as election looms

Was deflation ever an issue for the public besides the rentier property owner LDP base?

Whereas inflation is affecting the vast, non LDP represented majority.

6 ( +13 / -7 )

A better way to soothe public anxiety would be to convince companies to raise wages to help households deal with rising costs, and boost productivity, analysts say.

Which analysts said that?

Prices, or which wages are one type, are flexibly set in free markets.

Japan needs freer markets to make for higher competition and higher wages for those workers with differentiated skills and abilities.

You don’t just hope Santa Claus will make the environment better, you enact policy changes for those ends.

Japan never really is and wages have stagnated for 3 decades. Go figure.

2 ( +8 / -6 )

Santa Claus will make the environment better, you enact policy changes for those ends.

That sounds like Santa Claus is a government policy setting central planner .

Wages are low because companies were greedy over 3 decades of productivity gains and thought it was better to invest in stock buybacks and executive bonuses than returning those gains to workers.

3 ( +11 / -8 )

I bought 4 four package of Oreo,for 3 dollars at Big Lots,you can get lots of good deals,if you shop wisely

-11 ( +3 / -14 )

The wife always says that Japan is sinking and now I have to wholeheartedly agree with her.

-8 ( +7 / -15 )

Wages are low because companies were greedy over 3 decades of productivity gains and thought it was better to invest in stock buybacks and executive bonuses than returning those gains to workers.

Is that your explanation for Japan’s lag in wage growth versus other countries?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Face it. Nothing is going to change for the better. Kishida and Co will get the majority they want, with 60% of the population not bothering to vote, and they will then start talking, the next day, about how it was a mandate to do anything BUT help the people of the nation. They'll keep asking us to endure higher prices and push companies to increase pay. The companies will -- 40 yen a year so long as you work more than the 100-hour overtime cap. They'll claim it's a mandate for a defense-spending package that is triple what last year's was "to counter China's growing influence in the region". They'll say they are going to give regular citizens relief from increased prices by promising major corporations a handout, which they should, but won't, pass on to employees. GoTo campaigns will be resurrected despite Tokyo seeing 8000 or so Covid cases today, which the government will offer in coupons, etc. etc. I also predict it won't be long before talk of lowering health insurance coverage to 60% because "we can't afford it (with all the defense and other spending)", and retirement starting at 70 years (if you want pension).

0 ( +12 / -12 )

 a population that has not experienced steady inflation for decades and hasn't seen wages rise enough to compensate for the cost of living.

Wages, including minimum wage, has barely gone up in 30-40 years. My buddy here in Japan was making 750 yen/hour minimum wage back in 1984 and I was making $3.45 /hour in the CA.

Minimum wage in my area of Japan is 820 yen/hour. That's a 120 yen increase in 38 years.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

@smithinjapan

Exactly.

Rince and repeat of BS.

I never heard of any reforms outside tax rise. Or please enlighten me.

-3 ( +6 / -9 )

Seems like Sato San will soon be out of vitamins.

There is one simple solution to inflation raise salaries. If you are doing less than 550 000 a month here in Tokyo you will be hustling.

I went to my boss and was straightforward.

Don't be afraid to ask there are not many people to do your job since Japan is ageing.

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

50% off sign implies deflation. I was talking to my boss about this and said I don't have a car so not really feeling the pinch with gas prices skyrocketing, and he said neither is he with a Honda Civic hybrid which he says only needs filled up every other month. Amazing.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

I have read every attempt to blame the situation on everything but the real reason.

I have heard:

It is because of Covid and over buying after lockdowns!

It is because Russia invaded Ukraine.

Etc...

But the real reason are the Sanctions that caused the oil prices to shoot up and our allies like Saudi Arabia raised their prices, my country, Canada is happy (Well the politicians and oil buddies) as the oil sands are back up and running with the high prices).

I haven't met a single Japanese that cares about Ukraine, the war or Sanctions, I have met a lot of Japanese that think Japan needs to stay out of it and take care of its own people

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

50% off doesn't look like inflation to me.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

People are blaming the politicians the hands that feed them and the politicians are blaming the corporations the hands that feed them. My question is who will starve not the government the people need to wake up and vote instead of complaining. If not they will get the same people in office and hear the same BS every election. These politicians know the people will not vote so they tell you what you want to hear and then do what they want to do!!!

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Japan will become a poor country at this rate.

-9 ( +8 / -17 )

Ukraine has nothing to with price of anything, especially the PS5,maybe think it a heavy weapons,it has military purposes,I give my coupon,that I snatch from the store,they are free for the taken,save 2 dollars on apples,got some coupon for Queso,buy one get one free,will get some meat for the weekend

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

its ironic that Japan finds 2% inflation too difficult while the rest of the world has this amount of inflation almost every year.

Also that they've been trying to engineer inflation for decades and now they have it.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

 I also predict it won't be long before talk of lowering health insurance coverage to 60% because "we can't afford it 

Actually, Japan can’t afford more than 40 trillion yen of the 107 trillion yen it plans to spend this year, since record tax revenues are only 67 trillion yen.

And if one looks at what Japan spends 40 trillion on each year, there are very few items that qualify. Health insurance and pensions are in that category. Defense spending could be zero, and Japan still wouldn’t be able to afford what it spends on welfare programs.

These are just the numbers, as they are.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

For now, Kishida's victory seems solid thanks in part to a weak and fragmented opposition.

what BS! For now?? That's the way its ALWAYS been.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

A better way to soothe public anxiety would be to convince companies to raise wages to help households deal with rising costs, and boost productivity, analysts say.

Or GROW A PAIR and actually raise the minimum wage and enforce Japan's already existing labor laws seriously.

OR temporarily cut sales tax in half on necessities like products sold in supermarkets and children's stores.

OR cut income tax on people making less than a certain amount every month

There are a TON of things ANY LDP gov could do to ease the pain on the average working stiff.

To quote the late Michael Jackson- All I wanna say is that they really don't care about us

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

I think the best thing the government could do is just shrink itself. Not more regulation and interference, but less. Let the people act freely in accordance with their own desires.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Kishida knows best.

Just wait and see.

Unicorns and rainbows for all.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

A better way to soothe public anxiety would be to convince companies to raise wages to help households deal with rising costs, and boost productivity, analysts say

…..

What La La Land are these ‘analysts’ from?

Not this one, that is for sure!

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Hiding fact that Japan promised Ukraine $130billion of tax money before winter and that Russia is seriously threatening to cut off oil, gas, timber and fisheries before winter is not mentioned in the parties election campaigns.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

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