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Article / 18 December 2012 at 6:31 GMT

Outrageous Prediction: Japan's electronics companies nationalised

Peter Garnry Peter Garnry
Head of Equity Strategy / Saxo Bank
Denmark

Japan’s electronics industry, once the glory of the ‘Land of the Rising Sun’, enters a terminal phase after being outmatched by the roaring South Korean electronics industry, with Samsung the winner. The core driver of the industry’s decline is a too domestically oriented approach which has led to a high fixed cost base due to Japan’s extreme living costs, pensions and the strong yen. With combined losses of USD 30 billion in the last twelve months ending September 30, 2012, for Sharp, Panasonic and Sony combined, creditworthiness deteriorates greatly and the Japanese government nationalises the electronics industry in déjà-vu style - similar to the government bailout of the US automobile industry. There has been no nominal growth in Japan’s gross domestic product in eight out of the last 16 years and as a consequence of the bailouts, the Bank of Japan formalises nominal GDP targeting. The BoJ expands its balance sheet to almost 50 percent of nominal GDP to
spur inflation and weaken the yen. As a result, USDJPY goes to 90.

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