Japanese companies remain confident before Omicron arrives


The latest quarterly survey by the Bank of Japan shows that Japanese companies are confident in the country’s economy. Analysts warned that this survey was conducted before most business leaders took the new Omicron coronavirus variant into account.

The Bank of Japan’s quarterly tankan survey showed that the sentiment of large Japanese manufacturers was in line with previous reports, as supply chain disruptions began to ease, and companies felt capable of responding to rising oil and other commodity prices.

This Tankan Index The confidence index of large manufacturers remained at positive 18 in December, unchanged from September.

Semiconductor shortage With the gradual lifting of the blockade in Southeast Asia, Japanese companies have established complex supply chains there, and demand for products ranging from automobiles to consumer electronics has eased.

The Tankan Survey is one of Japan’s most comprehensive economic indicators and is closely watched by economists around the world. It conducts a poll on whether the business situation of a company is “favorable” or “unfavorable”, and then subtracts the latter from the former to get a reading between negative 100 and positive 100. A number higher than zero indicates positive business sentiment.

Although the sentiment remained in the positive zone for a period of time, analysts pointed out that the report represents the sentiment before the epidemic. Omicron appears.

At the end of November, the Japanese government Tighten restrictions Foreign arrivals and overseas business trips of national citizens-which has frustrated many companies-to help contain the spread of the virus. The Bank of Japan stated that nearly 80% of Tankan survey respondents submitted their responses before November 29.

After the Covid-19 emergency was lifted at the end of September, confidence in the service industry soared, with the index rising from positive 2 to positive 9. The retail industry increased from negative four to positive three.

Although restaurants are allowed to sell alcohol and open later, analysts say that people still Feeling uneasy about eating outThe sentiment in the accommodation and catering industry rose by 24 points, but remained at minus 50 points.

Capital Macros’ senior Japanese economist Marcel Thieliant said in a report that the latest tankan survey “shows that the service industry has begun to narrow the gap with the manufacturing industry, and we believe this process will also continue.”

Thieliant added that since nearly 80% of the population is vaccinated and the infection rate is relatively low, “the service industry should continue to recover”.

Car manufacturer, for example Toyota cars Production is increasing to make up for this year’s production loss. Confidence in the car dropped slightly from minus seven points to minus eight points. Takuji Aida, chief economist at Okasan Securities, said: “The industry’s decline has almost stopped.”

While noting the strong gains in manufacturing and non-manufacturing, Aida warned that potential labor shortages may lead to Slow down recovery Service sector.

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