Japan: Business sentiment hits six-year high in Q4
December 16, 2013
According to the Bank of Japan's quarterly TANKAN business survey, sentiment among large manufacturers jumped to its highest level since Q4 2007, suggesting that Japan's economic prospects remain largely upbeat. The index rose from 12 points in Q3 to 16 points in Q4, beating market expectations of an increase to 15 points. A positive reading means that optimists outnumber pessimists.
Confidence in non-manufacturing industries improved further in Q4, increasing from 14 points in Q3 to 20 points. As a result, the index now sits at the highest level since Q3 2007.
Going forward, large enterprises in the manufacturing sector anticipate that conditions will remain positive in the next 12 months; the forward-looking forecast index rose to 14 points in Q4 (Q3: +11 points), which represents the highest level since Q4 2007. Meanwhile, large manufacturers forecast that the Japanese yen will trade at 96.0 JPY per USD by the end of the fiscal year 2013 (ending March 2014).