The Presidential Daily Brief

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    Japanese Economy Contracts in Blow to ‘Abenomics’

    Did Shinzo Abe’s hopes just shrink? Japan’s economy contracted 0.4 percent in Q4 for an annualized 1.4 percent dip — its second quarterly drop last year. Experts blame weak demand for expensive items like cars and appliances, while Tokyo insists “the fundamentals (of the economy) remain good.” But some think Abenomics — focused on fiscal stimulus, monetary easing and structural reforms — is failing to bear fruit, and that the news will spark new Bank of Japan measures after its adoption last month of the first-ever negative interest rate.

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