Japan: Business sentiment remains firmly entrenched in negative territory
April 1, 2013
According to the quarterly TANKAN business survey elaborated by the Bank of Japan, sentiment among large manufacturers remains downbeat despite government efforts to spur economic growth. The index rose to minus 8 points in the first quarter, which represents an improvement over the minus 12 points tallied in Q4 2012 but is a notch below the minus 7 points anticipated by market analysts. A negative reading means that pessimists outnumber optimists.
Meanwhile, confidence in non-manufacturing industries improved from 4 points in the fourth quarter to 6 points in the first.
Going forward, large enterprises in the manufacturing sector anticipate conditions will be less negative, with the forward-looking forecast index rising to minus 1 point in the first quarter of the year (Q4 2012: -10 points), its highest level in three quarters. Big manufacturers see the Japanese yen trading at an average of 85.22 JPY per USD by the end of the fiscal year 2013.
FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panellists expect investment to rise 0.6% in 2013, which is unchanged over the previous month's projection. In 2014, the panel sees investment expanding 2.5%.