Japan set for fresh stimulus as growth slows

JAPANESE Prime Minister Naoto Kan ordered his ministers yesterday to plan a second budget for the remainder of the financial year amid concern the country’s economy is faltering.

A government official said spending could total 4.6 trillion yen (£34.5bn) but would not require additional government bonds to be issued.

However, economics minister Banri Kaieda called for Japan’s central bank – Bank of
Japan (BoJ) – to lift its ceiling on government bond purchases effectively calling for a resumption of quantitative easing. The BoJ could lift the ceiling by as early as next week.

The news came as official figures from the ministry of finance showed exports slowed for the sixth straight month. For the twelve months to August exports grew by 15.8 per cent, well down from a peak in February of 45.3 per cent.