Improved corporate governance, better relationships with shareholders and more companies paying dividends. Japanese corporations are finally getting their act together.
We have considered Japan to be a bargain for some time. But having suffered some of the steepest declines of all major equity markets in the past few weeks, it is now even more appealing.
The good news just keeps coming in Japan. Employees’ earnings grew by 0.9% year-on-year in August, slightly down from 1.6% in July.
Shinzo Abe’s time as Japan’s prime minister has been good for investors. With his re-election as party leader, John Stepek sees no reason for that to change.
One of the few big opportunities in global markets is Japan’s small-cap value sector. And now there is finally a fund that focuses directly on this niche, says Merryn Somerset Webb.
Over the past five years, Japanese companies’ average pre-tax profit margin has risen from 4.5% to 7.7%.
This year has not been kind to Japanese equities. But this looks wrong-headed given the encouraging backdrop.
Income investors who rely on UK stocks and funds are missing out on the fastest-growing source of income in the world – the dividends of Asia-Pacific companies.
Investors need to go a long way to find sensibly priced stocks today, but Japan and the US still offer pockets of value, Simon Edelsten tells Merryn Somerset Webb.
In the early and mid-2000s, the Japanese market consistently saw around 100 initial public offerings a year. When the crisis struck, flotations slipped sharply, but now we are finally on track for a post-crisis high.
Most investors are behind the curve on Japan. They’re missing a trick, says Merryn Somerset Webb – Shinzo Abe’s reforms are breaking the “iron coffin lid” and bargains abound.