Japanese Eco Watchers Survey Higher orders in the corporate sector and tighter labor conditions led the rise while sluggish consumption, stemming from slow wage growth and debilitating heat waves, damped the move toward a recovery. Some respondents continued to worry about the dampening effect of the appreciating yen, which trims exporters’ windfall profits and thus hurts stock prices.
* The Watchers’ outlook index showing sentiment over the next two to three months rose 0.3 point to 47.4 in August from 47.1 in July, also marking the second straight increase.
* The Cabinet Office upgraded its overall economic assessment based on the survey for the second month in a row, saying, “The economy is moving toward a pickup.” For the July survey, it said the economy was “showing signs of a pickup as calm has returned to financial markets.”
* “The economy is now in the phase of a pickup. We wanted to say the economy is picking up but while the corporate and employment sub-indexes rose in August, the household sub-index remained weak. If the household sector improves, we could say the economy is picking up or recovering,” Cabinet Office director of regional economies Masahiko Tsutsumi told reporters.
* “Looking ahead, there are expectations for higher public projects and job offers while concerns about overseas economies and financial markets remain,” the government said.