Can a company boss have too much power?

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Nov 19, 2018
The chairman of Nissan Motors, Carlos Ghosn, has been arrested by Japanese prosecutors. He’s accused of underreporting his income on financial statements. Nissan says it’ll fire him this week and Nissan’s CEO says Ghosn’s arrest shows that too much power had been concentrated in one person for too long. Click the audio player above to […]

Nissan chair Ghosn dismissed, held on misconduct charges

Nov 19, 2018
Nissan said it was providing information to the prosecutors and cooperating with their investigation. The allegations also concern a Nissan representative director, Greg Kelly, who was also arrested.
Nissan chairman Carlos Ghosn delivers a keynote address at CES 2017 at the Westgate Las Vegas Resort & Casino on Jan. 5, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada. 
David Becker / Getty Images

SoftBank is taking its mobile division public. But what is SoftBank?

Nov 12, 2018
SoftBank Group Corp., the massive Japanese holding company, is planning to take its mobile division public. The company is trying to raise $21 billion in its IPO, and it’ll list on the Tokyo Stock Exchange in December. You may not have heard of SoftBank, but it has a hand in a lot of our consumer technologies […]
Softbank group CEO Masayoshi Son delivers a speech during his company's financial results press conference at a hotel in Tokyo on Nov. 5, 2018.
TOSHIFUMI KITAMURA/AFP/Getty Images

Japan expands use of foreign "interns" to address labor shortage

Oct 10, 2018
The unemployment rate is just 2.4 percent in Japan; the country is filling the job gaps with a controversial program for foreign interns.
Workers at the Tsuda Shoten fish plant in Kamaishi, Japan. About 10 percent of the workers are non-Japanese “interns” who come through a special government program.
Adrian Ma/Marketplace

What Japan and the U.S. hope to get from holding bilateral trade talks

Sep 27, 2018
Japan has agreed to start talking to the United States about trade on a bilateral basis. That’s the word from both countries after Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe met with President Donald Trump at the United Nations in New York on Wednesday. Japan, up until this point, has favored pursuing multilateral trade deals including the […]

The U.S., Japan and the EU meet to discuss China’s trade practices

Sep 25, 2018
U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer is scheduled to meet Tuesday in New York with trade officials from the European Union and Japan. It’s the fourth meeting they’ve held in the past year, all in an effort to join forces against Chinese trade practices they say are unfair. Click the audio player above to hear the […]
U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer speaks onstage during the 2018 Concordia Annual Summit at Grand Hyatt New York on Sept. 25, 2018 in New York City.
Riccardo Savi/Getty Images for Concordia Summit
A Lawson’s store in Lakewood, Ohio in 1975 (left), and a Lawson store in Tokyo’s Akasaka neighborhood in 2018. Even though the brand was founded in Ohio, there are zero Lawson stores in the continental U.S. today, and over 14,000 in Japan. 
Special Collections, Cleveland State University Library & Adrian Ma/Marketplace

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Japan trade officials and companies take a nuanced approach to U.S. tariffs

Sep 4, 2018
The Trump administration’s 25 percent tariff on imported steel has triggered retaliation from U.S. trading partners such as Canada, the European Union, and China. But over the past few months, Japan, which has also been a target of U.S. tariffs, and which runs a $69 billion trade surplus with the U.S. (the third-largest trade imbalance […]

U.S.-Japan trade talks open today in Washington

Aug 9, 2018
Japan trade talks are set to open today in Washington, D.C. for the first bilateral trade meeting since President Donald Trump pulled the U.S. out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership last year. It’s a high level meeting between Japanese Economic Minister Toshimitsu Motegi and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer. Negotiating a free trade agreement and tariffs […]
Left, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Japanese Economic Minister Toshimitsu Motegi are meeting today in Washington, D.C. on trade.
Chris Kleponis - Pool/Getty Images and ERIC PIERMONT/AFP/Getty Images

Postcard from a Japanese steel town

Aug 1, 2018
The city of Kamaishi is the birthplace of the modern Japanese steel industry, but that hasn't shielded it from change.
The Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal plant in Kamaishi, Japan.
Adrian Ma/Marketplace