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Equity Roundup: Bear Cycle Continues

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JAPAN DATA: The Bank of Japan board decided Tuesday in an 8-to-1 vote to
maintain its current monetary easing stance under the yield curve control
framework it adopted in September last year. In addition, recent weak price data
prompted the board to lower its projections for consumer prices in fiscal 2017
and 2018, but the BOJ stuck to its latest timeframe that it can achieve its 2%
inflation target "around fiscal 2019" ending in March 2020. Under the yield
curve control framework, the BOJ will seek to stabilize the 10-year government
bond yield, the benchmark for long-term borrowing costs, at around zero percent
and keep the overnight interest rate at -0.1%.
- The BOJ also reiterated its inflation-overshooting commitment, under which it
will continue monetary easing until inflation is firmly anchored around 2%, even
if price gains overshoot that level for a time.
- Board member Goushi Kataoka, who joined the board in July, dissented for the
second straight meeting, although he didn't propose any specific policy action.
Instead, Kataoka's comments were included in footnotes in the bank's policy
statement issued after the board's two-day meeting.

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