Japan S New Prime Minister Approved Yen At 20 Month Low
Shinzo Aze has been approved Japan's next prime minister. Abe is calling for aggressive monetary policy easing and fiscal spending in the effort to defeat deflation by weakening the yen and restoring a strong economy.
Abe, who was previously prime minister in 2007, is hoping to achieve a 2 percent inflation target with the BOJ. Abe's party is threatening to revise the law regarding the BOJ's independence if they do not agree to the 2 percent target rate. With the added pressure on the BOJ the yen dropped to a 20-month low of 85.38 Wednesday against the dollar.
Elsewhere, US holidays sales slowed by more than half this year with a marginal advance of 0.7% on retail sales. The report was done by MasterCard's SpendingPulse who track total US sales at stores and online. With still no agreement on the fiscal cliff and the Hurricane Sandy disruption, Americans have become weary and growth has slowed. Consumer confidence was also at a five month low in December. The only area that benefited was home-related products. Americans have been using their holiday money to replace ruined appliances from the hurricane. The Newtown massacre has also hit Americans nationwide.
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