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Moody’s lowers Japan’s credit rating

Translated Saturday 27 August 2011, by Jayne McKenzie and reviewed by Henry Crapo

With their rating brought down to Aa3, three notches below AAA, Japan has been placed under increased pressure. In spite of the difficulties the country faces, the markets want to submit it to greater austerity.

The ratings agency justifies its decision as follows: “Over the past five years, frequent changes in administrations have prevented the government from implementing long-term economic and fiscal strategies as effective and durable policies”.

In response, the Japanese government has announced a series of measures to counter the strength of the yen, one of which is a 100 billion dollar (69 billion euro) credit facility, over one year, to encourage Japanese businesses to make foreign investments, and an increased surveillance of the foreign exchange market. Finance Minister Yoshihiko Noda hopes to thus curb the rise of the yen, seen as a safe investment in the context of investors’ distrust of any risky assets.

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