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The Credit Cruncher was conceived to help you to keep up to date with credit crunch and recession developments, it provides some helpful credit crunch advice and it addresses personal debt. The Credit Cruncher also seeks to explain how the credit crunch started and shed some light on the worldwide recession. Recently, we have begun to look at how BREXIT will affect the UK economy. Please feel free to leave comments where relevant.

20 May 2009

Japans recession

The world's second largest economy has reported it's sharpest drop on record yet remains positive about recovery. Economists are apparently in agreement that Japan is over the worst despite a decline in GDP of 4% in the last quarter, marking a full 12 months of decline totaling more than 15%. In contrast the UK and US only declined by 1.9 and 1.6 per cent respectively in the first quarter of 2009.
The crisis is now impacting on domestic spending as the effect of falling global demand takes it's toll and exports plummet. Workers are being laid off as production is cut back but the cycle of a cut in spending leading to joblessness, leading to further cuts in spending has (if economists are to be believed) already 'bottomed out'. This seems to be a bold statement straight after a 4% drop in GDP has been recorded and may be an attempt to 'spin' some confidence into the market.
Spin has played a major part in battling the economic crisis right across the globe, yet it has proven to be fairly ineffective when negative publicity about the crisis is readily available in the media. The people are not going to have the wool pulled over their eyes when staring uncertain job prospects in the face no matter how much spin you employ.
Practical measures are being taken as Prime Minister Taro Aso has announced a $150bn stimulus package to reinvigorate demand and re-inflate the economy, and economists are banking on the stimulus to work. If the experience of the Western Economies are anything to go by, whilst the stimulus packages do indeed serve to give the impression that 'something' is being done - they do not actually lever tightly grasped coins out of our hands, if anything the enormity of the situation can be highlighted by the quantity of cash being fed into the economy. The publicity caused by the billions and trillions of dollars on the table can actually make people cautious about how they spend the cash that they have. After all, even those who don't understand the minutii of macro-economics have probably worked out that in years to come, these huge amounts of cash will be coming straight out of our pockets. True to form, it is expected that when the Japanese economy recovers, purchase taxes will be hiked to help pay for the stimulus packages. Currently Japan's national debt outstrips any other major economy and currently stands at 200% of their GDP.

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