Japanese core machinery orders have recovered their pre-financial crisis levels as companies prepare to invest more in their businesses, a trend that could lend support to a contentious plan to raise the nation’s sales tax. Core machinery orders, which exclude volatile orders from electric power companies and for ships, rose 6.8% in the April-June quarter, the government said Tuesday. The total value of the orders came to ¥2.3 trillion ($24 billion), the highest level since the July-September quarter of 2008.
Japan’s food self-sufficiency rate in fiscal 2012 remained at 39 % on a calorific input basis for the third consecutive year, the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries announced Thursday, August 8. Although rice consumption dropped amid higher prices, the self-sufficiency rate maintained its level, as consumption of Japanese-grown wheat and soybean grew thanks to increased amount of harvested crop, the ministry reported.
Sony's board is likely to reject a US hedge fund's proposal to spin off part of its profitable entertainment arm, a report said on August 01. Japan's leading Nikkei business daily said the company's directors discussed the idea on July 31 and were leaning towards turning the proposal down after reviewing a financial advisor report on the deal. Some directors argued that Sony can compete better as a whole firm instead of hiving off part of the entertainment division, the Nikkei said without citing sources.