The Bank of Japan is likely to increase its record stimulus even more, said 28 of 33 economists surveyed by Bloomberg News, with a majority forecasting the bank will continue easing beyond Governor Haruhiko Kuroda’s current term.
The BOJ’s decision to boost the pace of asset purchases on Oct. 31 combined with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s later move to postpone a sales-tax increase have made any eventual tapering more difficult, said 22 of the economists in the survey, conducted Dec. 11 to 16. Seventeen said the central bank wouldn’t be able to exit its policy before Kuroda’s five-year term ends in April 2018.
The results underscore doubts about Kuroda’s bid to spur 2 percent inflation, with economist Yuji Shimanaka at Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities Co. the only one forecasting the BOJ will reach its target in the year from April. Kuroda said the onus is on the government to strengthen its finances after Abe delayed a hike in the tax less than three weeks after the BOJ increased the pace of its bond purchases.