1.Rakuten Group Achieved Record Group Revenue in January-September
NHK reported on Nov 11, Rakuten Group’s revenue for the nine months from January to September this year showed that online shopping was intense, with sales reaching a record high. Sales were up 15% year-on-year to 1.05 trillion yen, a record high for this time of year. In addition, between July and September, the total volume of transactions in this segment increased by 8.7% YoY(year-on-year). On the other hand, although the mobile part continues to grow with 4.11 million subscriptions through September, due to strategic investment in future growth, including the buildout of the Rakuten Mobile service area accelerated, the Group posted a loss of 92.2 billion yen.
2.Prime Minister Kishida “Growth and Distribution Putting the Economy on a New Growth Orbit”
NHK reported on Nov 10; Prime Minister Kishida participated in a meeting of the APEC (Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Conference) held in a video conference on the night of the 11th. He emphasized that Japan would put on a new growth orbit in the economy by increasing income through bold investment, reform, and distribution for growth and contribute to the development of the Asia Pacific region. Furthermore, he stressed, “The world is moving forward to a new era of the capitalist economy in which companies and governments make bold investments to protect the middle class, the core of a healthy democracy, prepare for global crises such as climate change.
3.Greenhouse Melon Farmers Affected by Soaring Oil Prices
NHK reported on Nov 11, according to the local agricultural cooperative, the price of fuel oil per liter in Shizuoka Prefecture last month was about 95 yen, about 30 yen higher than the same month the previous year, due to the soaring price of fuel oil. To grow greenhouse melons, the temperature inside the greenhouse needs to be kept at about 25 degrees Celsius, and Mr. Chujo usually uses 20 kiloliters of heavy oil per month. If this trend continues, his monthly cost is expected to increase by several hundred thousand yen. Several farmers have come forward to quit, claiming that they cannot bear the increased price of fuel oil.
4.Corporate Goods Price Index Rises for 8th Straight Month on Higher Oil Prices, Highest in 35 Years and 8 Months
NHK reported on Nov 11, last month’s preliminary corporate goods price index, which shows the prices of goods traded among companies, was 107.8, the highest in 35 years and eight months, based on the 2015 average of 100. The rate of increase is also the highest in 40 years and nine months, backed by the rise in international oil prices. In addition to steel, prices of synthetic rubber, copper, aluminum, and other materials have risen widely as economic activity in many countries has normalized. However, there are also concerns that higher corporate prices will further squeeze the earnings of domestic companies hit by the CCP virus disaster, and BOJ (Bank of Japan) says it will “carefully monitor the impact.
5.Prime Minister Kishida Met with the Commander of the US Indo-Pacific Command
NHK reported on Nov 11, Prime Minister Kishida met with the Commander of the US Indo-Pacific Command, Admiral John Aquilino, who shared severe concern over China’s unilateral attempts to change the status quo. They also exchanged opinions on the latest developments, including North Korea’s nuclear and missile development. They said their countries would work closely, so their alliance would better deter and tackle threats. Furthermore, they agreed it’s important to steadily reorganize the US military in Japan to maintain deterrence and ease the burden on communities that host US facilities.
6.Nippon Travel Agency Cuts Capital to 100 Million Yen
Kyodo reported on November 11, Nippon Travel Agency (Tokyo), a subsidiary of JR West Japan, announced on November 11 that it would cut its capital 4 billion yen to 100 million yen to see the effect of reducing taxes paid by becoming a small business. It has already been approved at the extraordinary shareholders’ meeting in October and implemented on December 14. Nippon Travel Agency is privately held and has about 5,000 employees (as of July 2020). Due to the CCP virus, the company’s consolidated loss for the fiscal year ended December 2020 was 12.7 billion yen, the largest ever. A spokesperson explained, “We will ensure the soundness of our financial base by cutting capital.
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