Japan Keeps Monetary Policy Unchanged



At its October meeting, the Bank of Japan maintained its pledge to increase the monetary base at an annual pace of 60-70 trillion yen. The central bank said it expects the trend of moderate recovery to continue, while citing some weakness on the production side, housing investment and business sentiment amid resilient private consumption and improving employment and income situation.

The central bank also decided to keep purchasing Japanese government bonds (JGBs) so that their amount outstanding will increase at an annual pace of about 50 trillion yen, and the average remaining maturity of the Bank's JGB purchases will be about seven years. The Bank will purchase exchange-traded funds (ETFs) and Japan real estate investment trusts (J-REITs) so that their amounts outstanding will increase at an annual pace of about 1 trillion yen and about 30 billion yen respectively. As for CP and corporate bonds, the Bank will maintain their amounts outstanding at about 2.2 trillion yen and about 3.2 trillion yen respectively.

Statement by the Bank of Japan:

Japan's economy has continued to recover moderately as a trend, although some weakness on the production side has been observed due mainly to the effects of the subsequent decline in demand following the front-loaded increase prior to the consumption tax hike.Overseas economies -- mainly advanced economies -- have been recovering, albeit with a lackluster performance still seen in part. Exports have shown some weakness.Business fixed investment has increased moderately as corporate profits have improved. Public investment has more or less leveled off at a high level. Private consumption has remained resilient as a trend with the employment and income situation improving steadily, and the effects of the decline in demand following the front-loaded increase have gradually begun to wane. As for housing investment, a decline following the front-loaded increase has continued. Industrial production has recently been showing some weakness, due in part to inventory adjustment. Business sentiment has generally stayed at a favorable level, although its improvement has paused due mainly to the effects of the consumption tax hike. Meanwhile, financial conditions are accommodative. On the price front, the year-on-year rate of increase in the consumer price index (CPI, all items less fresh food), excluding the direct effects of the consumption tax hike, is around 1¼ percent. Inflation expectations appear to be rising on the whole. 

With regard to the outlook, Japan's economy is expected to continue its moderate recovery trend, and the effects of the subsequent decline in demand following the front-loaded increase prior to the consumption tax hike are expected to wane gradually. The year-on-year rate of increase in the CPI is likely to be around 1¼ percent for some time. 

Risks to the outlook include developments in the emerging and commodity-exporting economies, the prospects for the European debt problem, and the pace of recovery in the U.S. economy. 

Quantitative and qualitative monetary easing (QQE) has been exerting its intended effects, and the Bank will continue with the QQE, aiming to achieve the price stability target of 2 percent, as long as it is necessary for maintaining that target in a stable manner. It will examine both upside and downside risks to economic activity and prices, and make adjustments as appropriate.


Japan Keeps Monetary Policy Unchanged


BoJ l Rida l rida@tradingeconomics.com
10/7/2014 10:47:56 AM