Final frontier? Japan after the Kuroda experiment

Tokyo skyline

Reflecting on five years as Bank of Japan (BoJ) governor, Masaaki Shirakawa said that each day in office “felt as if I was running as fast as I could into a strong wind”. Undoubtedly, having been thrust into the job in March 2008, he faced a tougher job than many central bank chiefs. But perhaps the stiffest breeze blew from the Japanese economy itself, not from the global crisis.

Since the ‘bubble economy’ of the late 1980s burst, pitching Japan into the ‘lost decade’ of the 1990s, inflation

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