Things are tough in Japan

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People are concerned about a recession here in the USA. I was wondering how our economic situation affected other countries and while I was resarching that, I came across this article on the Japan labor market from Forbes.com. Interesting reading…

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The recovery in Japan’s labor market is at a standstill as the latest economic data showed new hirings stagnated as companies battled high procurement costs.

Tighter regulations on building permits have also crimped demand for new labor.

Data showed household spending increased in December due to year-end holiday sales and travels abroad but weak income data suggest that private consumption may not pick up anytime soon.

Japan’s unemployment rate stood at 3.8 percent in December, unchanged from the previous month but coming in above expectations as the wholesale and retail sectors and medical and welfare services hired more workers.

Economists had expected the jobless rate to come in at 3.9 percent in December.

Separately, the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare said that for every individual seeking work, there were 0.98 job openings in December, down from 0.99 in November, because of declines in job offers in the construction, services and manufacturing sectors. The figure was below the market consensus forecast of 0.99 openings.

‘The jobless data showed a pause in the recovery in labor conditions. Although the market is not shrinking yet, there is a possibility that the jobless rate may gradually increase, taking into consideration the ratio of job offers to job seekers,’ said Hiromichi Shirakawa, chief economist at Credit Suisse.

‘Even sentiment among large companies in the manufacturing sector is worsening. And the environment for companies including small and medium-sized companies is deteriorating because of the rising cost of raw materials,’ he said.

Read: Japan’s job market recovery at standstill as companies battle higher costs

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