Expert notes from an expert trader on Japan

(Last Updated On: February 8, 2016)

Expert notes from an expert trader on Japan

We are writing here this morning about the news that the birth rate in Japan has actually risen… yes, risen!… over the course of the last decade. We have been writing here in TGL for decades about the disaster that has been the steadily declining birth rate there, and we have written about the fact that the Japanese political authorities have warned that the situation is so dire that demographically Japan’s population will be half what it is now in no more than 30 years unless something truly revolutionary takes place there. It won’t. Nonetheless, since it’s low in ’05 when Japan’s fertility rate… the number of children born on average to the average Japanese women during her child bearing years… fell to 1.26, it had risen to 1.42 at the end of ’14. “Up” is better than down and since the 70’s and to ’04 the trend for the fertility rate in Japan was inexorably “from the upper left to the lower right” on the chart. To keep things in their proper perspective, almost any demographer anywhere agrees that in order for a population to continue to rise the fertility rate must be 2.1 or better. Japan’s, by ’05, had fallen to half of what is necessary to keep the population growing, even after the “rally.” These same demographers argue that once a nation’s birth rate falls below 1.7 for any reasonable period of time… let’s call “reasonable” a decade or so… it is very nearly impossible to turn the demographic tide back to growth from slow annihilation. Japan’s trend is for the better, for as noted above 1.42 is better than 1.26, but it is still far below the “replacement” rate and it is far below the societal “death” rate. Just to be fair, Japan is not alone with these horrific demographics. The US “fertility” rate is 2.0 and although below the required 2.1 replacement rate it is offset by immigration, and despite the anathema that is immigration to our friends on the very far Right immigration into the US remains an important part of long term economic growth. Ah, but things are truly horrific in Europe, for although France (a still predominately Catholic country) has a fertility rate of 2.0, and although England’s is 2.1 Sweden’s and Irelands are 1.9, the rest of the continent is imploding. Germany’s, Spain’s and Italy’s are all 1.4, while that of the Netherlands and Belgium is 1.8. We don’t want to think about the fact that Judeo-Christian Europe is imploding in upon itself and is past the demographic point of no-return. We shall let the ecoradicals and the neo-Malthusians who continue to dominate the governments on the Continent stew in their own demographic collapse that they have created of their own policies, with nothing apparently being done to even try to correct their mistakes. At least Japan is trying and we give the Japanese government credit for the attempt. As Mr. Akira Morita, the Chairman of the Japanese National Institute on Fertility recently said Changing the birth rate does something for the future. But we need to decide what kind of country Japan will be on the basis of a declining population. We need to create an environment where people have the stability to get married and to have children again. Mr. Morita is absolutely right on this. Now the question is, “Is it too late?” Our answer is, “Yes, sadly it is.”


Expert panel to discuss the Japanese economy’s outlook! SIFMA and the JSDA present the Japan Securities Summit — March 10 in NYC!
Join SIFMA and the JSDA for the Japan Securities Summit, March 10 in NYC. Distinguished financial market professionals and experts from Japan and the United States will discuss the Japanese economy’s outlook from international perspectives, the impact of global regulatory reform and structural changes, trade agreements, introduction of new products, stock market overview, and the opportunities presented in this evolving market. Join us at this unique summit to better understand the Japanese economy and securities market.


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