Thursday, May 24, 2012

Fitch Donwgrades Japan

Fitch lowered its assessment of Japan’s sovereign credit to A+, still investment grade but just above countries like Spain and Italy.

The agency criticized Japan for not doing more to pare down its burgeoning debt.

According to the agency, Japan’s public debt will hit almost 240% of its gross domestic product by the end of the year.

 "The new rating also heightens the pressure on Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda to rein in spending and raise taxes at a delicate time, when the Japanese economy is still recovering from natural and nuclear disasters last year.

Mr. Noda has warned that Japan could eventually face a debt crisis akin to that afflicting Europe and is staking his job on a plan to double the consumption tax rate to 10 percent by late 2015. That increase, he has argued, is necessary to pay for soaring welfare costs and pension payments".  {New York Times)

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