Marketplace has a new podcast for kids, "Million Bazillion!" EPISODE OUT NOW

Japan approves $45 billion in extra spending

David Brancaccio Aug 2, 2016
HTML EMBED:
COPY
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe delivers a speech in Fukuoka, Japan in late July. STR/AFP/Getty Images

Japan approves $45 billion in extra spending

David Brancaccio Aug 2, 2016
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe delivers a speech in Fukuoka, Japan in late July. STR/AFP/Getty Images
HTML EMBED:
COPY

The Japanese government approved a package of measures on Tuesday to add money to the perennially limp economy there. If you count new spending, the stimulus is worth $45 billion, but you’ll see valuations of this running six times higher than that if it’s measured over many years.

Some market participants think this was too small, and Japan’s Nikkei stock index fell 1.5 percent today. But it sure looks like big stimulus. To get some context, we turned to Seijiro Takeshita, a professor at the University of Shizuoka.

Takeshita on Japan’s business culture today:

It’s very clear we’ll be in shortage of labor… partly because we have lesser young people and our birth rate is very, very low. We have a problem here; we need to supplement the labor and that’s one of the reasons why government is trying to open up labor to women, which Japan is very much behind, and also to immigration policies, etc. But unfortunately we have a lot of structural issues: for example, child care issues. Our companies and our structures are still very much behind in that sense , still sticking to the old ’70s and ’80s type of growth-oriented type of organizations, which basically, in my opinion, robs away a lot of opportunities ahead of us.

Production by Chris Olin.

We’re here to help you navigate this changed world and economy.

Our mission at Marketplace is to raise the economic intelligence of the country. It’s a tough task, but it’s never been more important.

In the past year, we’ve seen record unemployment, stimulus bills, and reddit users influencing the stock market. Marketplace helps you understand it all, will fact-based, approachable, and unbiased reporting.

Generous support from listeners and readers is what powers our nonprofit news—and your donation today will help provide this essential service. For just $5/month, you can sustain independent journalism that keeps you and thousands of others informed.