Japan is set for its longest run of economic growth in a decade
bloomberg.com -- May 17
While Japan's failure to spur inflation continues to generate angst about the nation's future, gross domestic product data this week is likely to show that the economy has still managed to eke out five straight quarters of expansion.

That would be the best run since 2006, during Japan's last period of political stability under the leadership of then-Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi.

Thanks to a strong showing from exporters -- aided by a yen that's back at the more competitive levels of a decade ago -- Shinzo Abe's government is set to better Koizumi's run later this year.

Whether or not increases in consumer prices take hold won't be known until much later in 2017, with a lot riding on expectations for higher energy costs and hopes for higher wages, which would encourage household spending and allow retailers to charge more for their wares.

All this is needed to create the kind of GDP growth and inflation for Japan to manage its huge debt burden.

For the next few quarters, though, Japan is on course to get modest economic expansion without much in the way of inflation.

News source: bloomberg.com
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