Japan Debt Reaches $8.78 Trillion in March

Japan’s central government debt stood at a record-high 1,053.4 trillion yen ($8.78 trillion) at the end of March, the Finance Ministry said Friday, in a result that puts pressure on the government to take further austerity measures.

The ministry also projected the debt would reach 1,167.1 trillion yen by the end of the current fiscal year starting April 1, reflecting the need for financing ballooning social security costs with state debt amid the aging society.

The latest figure topped the previous record of 1,039.4 trillion yen at the end of June last year and was more than double the country’s nominal gross domestic product in 2014 of 488.0 trillion yen. Japan’s fiscal health is the worst among major developed economies.

The result consisted of 881.5 trillion yen in government bonds, 55.0 trillion yen in borrowing, mainly from financial institutions, and 116.9 trillion yen in financing bills, or short-term government notes up to six months.

As of March 31, per-capita debt — or the amount owed per head of population — was about 8.30 million yen, as Japan’s total population was estimated at around 126.9 million as of April 1.

The government releases fiscal data every three months, compiled according to International Monetary Fund standards.

via Mainichi

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza