>Top 0. Introduction:
- Neoliberalism which never denies a government functions is different from laissez-faire policy; Market failures usually appear in an economic texts.
- Capitalism is like an unruly horse, which contains risks of inexperienced jockey usually fall from the horse.
- the opposite concept is Mercanticism; trade is promoted by tax incetives and subsidies.
- Prolonged lost decade or three-decades in Japan are serious.
- Omission of policies, or maintaining systems and customs of high growth age would be the real causes of such long-term stagnation.
- Japan's stagnation coincided with the collapse of Soviet bloc in 1990s; Socialism had economically succeeded a certain extent, but people wanted further freedom and diversity.
- Japanese bureaucratic leadership are becoming deadlocked
- Japan had enjoyed the fruits of free trade after WWII, but it seems strange that Japanese society despises the market mechanism.
- It is important to establish a pair of policies of competition in the market and the safety net.
- Corporations should protect the life of employee, and the country protect such corporations. Though people who are not protected by corporations have increased since the end of high growth age, the old systems are maintained and expand disparity.
- Structural reform is agreed in general, but its details are yet to be agreed, and postpone to perform the policies.
>Top 1. Theory of Neoliberalism:
- "The Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations"1776:
- Adam Smith wrote this to criticize the dominant trade by East India Company (EIC), spending many pages describing public finance.
- Neoliberalism advocates market mechanism promoted by individuals and corporations could bring preferable result, particularly in the advanced economy which is affluent of versatile goods and services, rather than promoted by the central top-down decision-makings.
- In Japan there are opposite theories: 1) Aristocracy, and 2) Community-oriented;
- Aristocracy: wisemen lead the nation, with high burden and high welfare policy; tends to become big government with big financial deficit.
- Community-oriented: SMB and local industries, agriculture be protected from large companies; emphasize traditional family and life-style.
- The above two policies are common in 'anti-market mechanism' and ' big government'.
- Ideal Neoliberalism should consider:
- Effective penalty against dango (bid-rigging), or cartel, fraud.
- Appropriate regulations to medical or childcare as well as utility services
- Revenue transfer: establish equal pay for equal work principle
- Social insurance: fair and sure insurance mechanism by specific social security tax.
- Division of roles of market and government
- Public goods & services:
- Environment conservation:
- Economic stability:
- Income redistribution:
- Public services:
- Defence, Police, Firefighting, Justice
- Privatization of Japan Highway Public Corp.
- Rates pool system aims to construct uneffective highways furthermore.
- Privatized Highway Corp. should originally constructs effective highways, but became only operation company of the highways.
- Pre (ex ante)-regulation or post (ex post)-regulation: >Top
- Pre regulation:
- effectiveness of the policy scarcely discussed or reviewed.
- red-taped applications
- criterion of the approval is ambiguous; mostly used to curve new entrants.
- lack of the viewpoint of consumers.
- Post regulation:
- uniform regulation of both incumbents and new entrants; Netoliberalistc regulation
- more professional officers needed
- # of officers; France 9.6%, UK 7.8%, Japan 4.2%
- Large scale retail store law; lack of consumers' viewpoint.
- Licensing system for existing suppliers (like liquor shops); a kind of patronage politics nominally proclaiming support for the weak suppliers.
- bid-rigging organized by government; such rigging is same with thief
- exit mechanism from the market is better than falling together.
- Environment issue:
- Government needs to correct the market rule to recognize the cost of environmental pollution
- Eg. emission control of cars
- Carbon tax
- Emission trading; not to curb economic activities of developing countries, but to create new market for environment.
- Three lags of in adopting Keynesian policies.
- to recognized economic recession
- to start appropriate policies
- to cause preferable economic effects.
- Wisemen are needed to prompte Keynesian policies.
- Neoliberalism can assign 'automatic stabilization mechanism'
- legistration of fiscal discipline;
- particularly social security expenses be paid by the specific purpose tax.
- Income redistribution:
- Guaranteed minimum; livelihood subsidies
- Social insurance; lower payment rate (41%) and ineffective Social Insurace Agency
- Pareto efficient:
- Pattern change of living standard of high income person and low income: >Top
- Pattern-A: Eg. after the bubble economy
- Pattern-B: Eg. raise of stock price; most Neoliberalistic scenario.
- Pattern-C: Eg. progressive taxation
- "国富論", 1776
- アダムスミス: 東インド会社など国家独占貿易への批判
- 日本では1) 賢人政治,
>Top 2. The end of Capitalism?
- Cause of the global recession by the subprime loan in 2008:
- A typical market failure
- Greenspan exaggerated this recession as once a century.
- Present global economy could defend chain reaction of currency devaluation or raise of tariff rate. (Comparison with the Great Depression in 1930s)
- 'Winner takes all' culture; high reward of CEOs
- Market failure or Government failure?:
- Tight regulations policy may cause 'government failure', which could be worse than market failure.
- Countermeasures from Neoliberalism viewpoint:
- Rating agencies who abused asymmetric nature of information.
- Inefficient regulatory administration
- Failure of subprime loans:
- Housing loan: "Buy and save(=repay) it " rather than "Save and buy it"
- Premises: price of real estate never falls. (correct until 1990 in Japan, and 2008 in US)
- Securitization is reasonable to absorb regional difference or price and rasing rates in US.
- Speculative demand follows by expectation of further price rise.
- Continued governmental support like Housing Loan Corp. in Japan, and Fannie Mae in US.
- Frank Hyneman Knight (1885-1972): "Risk, Uncertainty and Profit" >Top
- Risk can be estimated and insured to a certain degree, but uncertainty is not. Thus companies who challenged uncertainty could succeed in innovation and big profit.
- Why US financial industry could continue to retain big profit since 2000 based on innovation-related business models which are much larger than 'arbitrage' transaction.
- Financial products which were not covered risks pretended as fully covered products and were sold at higher prices.
- The collapse of subprime loans were necessary reaction of the market.
- Negotiated transaction: housing loans are typically over the counter corresponding transactions. But RMBS (Residential Mortgage Backed Securities) since 1970s enabled lending banks to prevent loan risks if the real estate prices declined.
- Furthermore more complicated derivative loans were made segmenting safer products and high-risk ones, or combination of these.
- Transferred 'bad debts risk' to buyers who could not analyze them. (Information asymmetry)
- Systemic risk;
- In Japan, there was the problems of seismic design assessment of collective housing.
- The developer must insure home insurance, and insurance company should assign strict assignment of the seismic design.
- CDS (Credit Default Swap); financial institution can use this insurance to prepare uncertainty risks.
- Agency Problem; Prinicipal-agent relationship >Top
- Trap of safety net:
- Safety net by the government may promote big uncertainty products.
- Profit of financial market is gained by corporate executives and shareholders, and loss born by the government (Moral hazard, or a kind of pollution)
- To prevent small sized forest fire may prevent metabolism of the forest, eventually causing large scale of forest fire.
- Too big too fail:
- there are various aspects; 1) too big to fail, 2) too complicated to analyze global organizations based on each bankruptcy proceedings, 3) too big for small country to save
- US Law 2010; enforced 1) to maintain severe the equity ratio, 2) to separate too big scale of organization into controllable size;
- On the contrary, Japan promoted to make mega bank, which is already too big to fail size.
- Institutional reform in US:
- Securitization can be partially authorized; creditor (issuer) should retain a portion of risk (particular high risk products)
- Review of bonus system for executives of financial institutions; by long-term held stocks, not by cash.
- Reform of rating agencies; retention of partial risk by the issuer is effective.
- Standardization and more transparency of securitized products; like foods described ingredients and certificate of origin, etc.
- Can Capitalism change?: Cause of bubble economy and its burst;
- Incompleteness of market
- Government failure; in Japan bubble economy in the latter half of 1980s due to economic stimulus policy after the Plaza Accord; excess money flowed into stocks and real estates.
- Measures to lower profit caused by uncertainty of financial transactions; rather than restricting business activities by financial institutions.
- Regulatory authority should play like an umpire of sports games;
- 'Advantage rule'; "that is unique to soccer, whereby the Referee has the responsibility to NOT call an obvious foul if, by stopping play at that moment, the effect would be to cause greater harm to the team that was fouled."
- Incentive regulation: >Top
- means fouling or yellow/red cards never becomes favorable in the game.
- 世界同時不況 2008の原因:
>Top 3. Market principle has been Japanese tradition:
- Kiyomori Taira, 1180:
- dared to transfer Japanese capital from Kyoto to Fukuhara (now Kobe city); ancien régime, emperor, nobles, temples were all opposed.
- In 12C, Fukuhara has a natural good port location, convenient to increase trade with then Sòng Dynasty of China.
- Kiyomori obviously aimed to rebuild Japan as trading country, or increasing size of economy rather than struggle about limited land space.
- 1185: But actually Heishi clan was defeated by Genji clan; and a dream of the road to a trading country was disappeared. Genji clan originated from East Japan reorganized into feudalistic military and agricultural centric country.
- End of 16C to end of 16C: during warring states ages were dark ages for a trade. There were many barriers (check points) at various places to impose toll charges as well as bribes required by samurai class.
- Ager of warring, around 1567:
- But Nobunaga Oda promoted free market and open guild policy; who recognized active economics could strengthen his military power. He ordered not to issue debts cancellation (tokuseirei), also promoted to separate warriors (samurai) and farmers. Nobunaga conducted various innovation to establish his hegemony, concentrating city habitants around his castle (jokamachi) pursuing economics of scale.
- But revolutionary Nobunaga was assassinated his staff of Mitsuhide Akehi having traditional way of thinking.
- Edo period, 1603-1868:
- during Edo period of Tokugawa shogunate there were distributed major cities in Japan; Edo political capital, Osaka economic center, Kyoto cultural center. The source of merchants power was generated fro free market economy. Marine transportation network was developed connecting with the economic center Osaka. Sakai city (of Osaka) was called Venice in Asia functioned as a free autonomous city. A kind of Derivative transaction of rice had started at Dojima (of Osaka) around 1730; a rice transaction before harvest fixing prices and volume using securities. Loan to Daimyo was paid by the annual rice tax of the next year.
- Later bureaucratic Edo bakufu (government) prohibited such derivative transaction of rice, which was not reopened even in 21C.
- Pre-WWII age until 1937:
- basically age of classic liberalistic economy; lower custom tariff rate, basically no restriction of foreign capitals. (Ford established Yokohama factory in 1925). Most of people lived at rented houses, having more liquidity in living. During the war new Land and House Lease Law was made to strengthn the right of tennant. Support of having my home policy enforcedworkers living remote and repaying lots for long time. Labor environment was rather hightly liquid. Companies procured funds by issuing capitals or corporate debt. Voice of shareholders were bigger than that of bankers. Though there were no social security and large income inequality, market economy was rather active.
- Militarism (established 1940 regime):
- National General Mobilization Law was made in 1938, enforcing 1) permanent employment and pay control, 2) from industry unions to enterprise unions, 3) indirect finance, priority allocation for military purpose, 4) land and house lease law guranteeing to live long for soldiers' families left at home.
- Almost all 1940 regime was maintained after WWII, becase US selected indirect control by then surrendered Japanese government, whose ideology was that companies shold contribute to the nation rather than pursue of profit as well as a culture of respecting authority and denigrating citizens.
- Premier Tanaka (1972-84) age:
- promoted socialistic policies:
- Convoy system of financial institutions
- Expansion of postal savings
- Large Scale Retail Stores Law
- Reguration of electricity, telecom, and aviation industry
- tranfer of income to rural areas; 'Balanced development of all regions of Japan'; annual migration from rural to city areas (400-600K) stopped in 1970s.
- constant raise of rice price
- active publice investment in rural areas (highway, shinkansen, industrial zone)
- transfer of income to rural areas
- subsidies for rural areas
- fucntion of MITI
- Trade conflice between US and Japan
- trade quota; export cartel
- Large Scale Retail Stores Law
- Divided country-Japan: dual structure >Top
- Productivity gap between large companies and SMB in Japan: stronger in offece but weaker in defense.
- Large companies like former West Germany, while SMB like East Germanry.
- minus growth in 1990s, 1997, and 2008.
- growing areas like medical and healthcare services are over regurated.
- inconsistency of Koizumi structural reform (2001-06)
- Problems; like big financial deficit; expansion of income disparity; inrease of non-regular employees; long-term stagnation, etc.
- 1180: 平清盛
- 12C: 福原遷都、
- 1603-1868: 江戸時代
- 江戸: 政治都市
- 大坂: 経済都市
- 京都: 文化都市
- 田中角栄 (1972-74)
>Top 4. Widening income gap:
- Income inequality:
- Difference of top and bottom
- Geni coefficient; Japan ranks about middle of OECD, but gradually increasing.
- Inequality tends to expand in middle & old generations;
- Seniority wage system in Japan expands by difference of industries and individual promotions, and accumulation of financial assets, as well as double income or not.
- Japanese pension system reflect the pay difference after retirement.
- Japanese society was featured 'rich working generation and poor retired' in high growth aged until 1980s, but after 1990s particularly inequality among regular employees and irregular ones expand.
- Major opposition forces are companies and unions of advanced countries which are affected by globalization. US government aided export of their agricultural products by subsidies.
- Liquidation of domestic labor market:
- is needed to compete with globalization.
- Japanese unique 'transfer of labor without unemployment' in high growth age; large companies invested new growing field by establishing affiliates and relocate internal HR.
- until 1990, unrealized profit in real estate held by companies enabled to procure risk capital.
- from 1990, companies became to utilize outside labors for the first time.
- according to globalization, companies tend to invest overseas and transfer their factories there; on the contrary oversea investment in Japan may bring not a few frictions due to difference of systems and business practice
- Countermeasures against the Lost Decade: >Top
- 4-5% growth and 2% unemployment rate in 1980s vs. 1% growth and 4% unemployment rate since 1990.
- various challenges:
- Temporary staff dispatch law; still remains lots of problems, including sudden termination of the contract, and no leave payment
- reform of bar examination to increase the number of lawyers.
- deregulation of taxi services; but remained the price approval system.
- home-to-home delivery service:
- separate surname of married couple
- OECD 中位
- 含み資産によるRisk capital
>Top 5. Koizumi Reform was too much?:
- Incomplete Postal reform:
- Unfair competition with banks:
- postal savings: difference with market interest is regarded as a subsidy.
- Fixed amount postal savings: can replace the deposit every half year when the interest rises, and can keep it for a decade when the interest declines.
- mostly used for Fiscal Investment & Loan Program (FILP), which are regarded as social inefficient projects.
- Government main bank:
- underwrites government bond endlessly.
- exempt from corporate tax, insurance tax, fixed asset tax as the state-owned bank.
- Financial Services Agency (FSA) cannot check Japan Post because Banking Act is not applicable.
- Dominant Postal services:
- operates different services; 1) Postal, 2) Banking, and 3) Insurance
- further reform is indispensable; 1) sales of government held stocks (1/3), and 2) gradually minimizing the size of operation.
- Decentralization of power:
- Decentralization and deregulation are inseparable to reform centralized Japan.
- Market principle and regional sovereignty are necessary to clarify burden and benefit.
- Japanese trinity reform; 1) national subsidy to region, 2) national guideline of regional projects, 3) tax allocation to local governments.
- Tokyo is the only municipal which does not receive tax allocation.
- Special Economic Zone: required by local governments to expand alternatives.
- SEZ only, or SEZ with subsidy
- Fiscal reconstruction: >Top
- Fiscal deficit in GDP; Primary balance: 8-9%/2010 -13, particularly due to steady increase of social security (31.1% in 2011); tax revenue ratio is only 52%.
- Is it safer that the nation bond are mostly bought in domestic?
- Nationality of the bond holders has no major meaning; most of the Japanese directly or indirectly hold the national bond not because of their patriotism, but safer asset.
- Special purpose tax of social security is needed.
- Income redistribution function; lower in OECD; 1) Korea, 2) US, 3) Japan, lowest in OECD countries)
- プリマリーバランス: 8-9%; 税収比率52%
- 国債の国内保有の理由: 愛国心ではなく安全資産
>Top 6. Reform of Social Security:
- Neoliberalistic proposals for social security:
- The framework was decided in 1973, when population pyramid was triangle and 10% high growth ages.
- Aging society is mostly due to elongation of lifespan; elongated women 9 years, men 7 years between 1970 -2009.
- Social security is said 'mutual aid system between generations'; which is not sustainable.
- Medical insurance; beneficiary is all generations, but 2/3 was spent by over 60 years generation.
- The key issue is 1) how to balance burden and benefit, 2) how to realize efficient government
- Income transfer within generation: >Top
- Present system is assumed that larger and richer generation support smaller & poorer old generation; but this premise was reversed since 1990s; richer older generation should support poorer older one.
- Public pension reduction: ¥1.2M (older than 64), while payroll reduction ¥0.65M
- Part of consumption tax should be purpose tax.
- Minimum pension age: Japan 65, US & Germany 67; as well as improving of working conditions for older generation.
- Full-time housewives are exempt to pay social insurance premium, becase their houseworks are regarded to contribute society.
- Medical insurance:
- Regional disparity in medical expense payment. (Max. Koch Pref. vs. Min. Chiba Pref.
- Medical expensed GDP ratio: Japan 8.5% (2008); US 16%, Germany/France 11%.
- Controversial issues:
- Regurated prices and laissez-faire in opening clinics.
- Freedom of opening of general practitioner (GP); casusing disparity of medical services among regions, medical specialities, GP and specialists in hospital.
>Top 7. Reform of Labor Market:
- Employment issue:
- In Japan, it is not 'Labor-Managment Confrontation'
- Management is composed of successful labor; thus the confrontation is 'labor-labor' issue.
- Disparity is serious between not only successful labor and unsuccessful labor but; large company and SMB; men and women.
- Japan Trade Union Confederation (JTUC) is not representing of 55M labors.
- Dual structure of labor market:
- job reduction risk; impute to temporary staff and/or subcontractors, and since 1990s increase of non-regular employment (more than 1/3)
- Status disparity is serious
- to strengthen safety net.
- Equal pay for equal work: >Top
- is contradictory with the policy of 'Regular wage increase'.
- Principle of capitalism: profits after paid wages and reward for management are all for shareholders.
- In Japan; profits after wages, reward and ordinary dividend are all for companies (managed by successful labors)
- Seniority wage:
- wage bases according to years of services is unfair, which could not be explained by the difference of productivity by seniority.
- higher wages for senior employee is regarded as compensation for lower wages for younger ages.
- but the population pyramid is no more pyramid shaped.
- Labor law says; "A dismissal shall, if it lacks objectively reasonable grounds and is not considered to be appropriate in general societal terms, be treated as an abuse of right and be invalid."
- should be more flexible like; "a dismissal shall be possible subject to appropriate reparation in cash."
- this clause could be needed in the crisis of bankruptcy.
- Bad habit in recruiting: >Top
- System of simultaneous recruiting of new graduates and compulsory age-limit retirement:
- Statistical selection by education and gender; due to difficult of selection by only interview of new graduates.
- strict selection is a supporting evidence of long-term employment.
- Companies tend to employ all-purpose capabilities even after 1990s.
- Opportunity of HRD is important; but only applicable to regular employees.
- Function of temporary personnel agencies; a kind of shade business compared with US and EU.
- It is abnormal that 4-year university students almost spend half of years for job hunting.
- Compulsory age-limit retirement is also problem; in US & EU there is no such system.
- It is a kind of discrimination of age; even he or she are capable and useful.
- almost universal promotion system by seniority and raise of pay.
- particularly typical in government employees
- the problem of golden parachute of government employees
- should integrate higher 1) pay, 2) responsibility, 3) social status, and 4) risk of employment.
- Less children:
- All family employment; typical style: husband works outside, and full-time housewife with family allowance.
- Such typical style of working has changed since 1990s; college-going rate of women are 15%/1990 to 45%/2010
- Delayed marriage and double income family tend to be difficult to childbirth and childcare.
- Women's employment rate drastically drops in child care period (M-shaped employment);
- how to realize 'work life balance'
- Childcare leave is 2 years at most; acquisition rate of childcare leave is 80%, but retirement due to childcare is about 70%; thus actual acquisition rate is around 20%.
- chronic over-time working and sudden relocation is more serious for double income familiy
- Reform revising the vested rights of regular employees and their union is urged.
- The ultimate alternative; regular employment or childbirth-childcare.
- Government countermeasure for less children society is confusing and spiritualism such as 'aiming women-shining society.'
>Top 8. Possibility of New Industry:
- Agriculture of rice production:
- Protection of petty farming, rather than agriculture industry policy.
- 'Reducing rice production' policy has been promoted.
- small scale of farmers: 60% is less than 1 ha with average income ¥4.3M per annum; composing of income 50:50 by agriculture and pension.
- Collapse of agriculture: >Top
- only 5% farmers own more than 5 ha.
- abandoned farmland is about 10% since 1990.
- 2/3 of farmers are over 65 age; 40% of farmland is inherited who are working in the city; will increase more abandoned farmland.
- Agricultural Land Act says, "the principle that cultivator should own farmland."
- Speculative demand for farmland: ultimate subsidy for farmland such as inheritance tax and fixed asset tax which enables low cost of holding farmland.
- Cultivator does not include company.
- The impact of TPP (Trans Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership Agreement)
- Medical, Elderly care, and Childcare:
- defacto controlled economy:
- Social security, public prices, and server new entrants;
- Drag lag issue: 20% of top 100 best-seller drugs are not yet authorized in Japan.
- Inspection system, lack of inspection specialists and knowledge
- Standard period of approval is needed.
- more use of generic medicine: public insurance is only applicable to generic in France.
- Social hospitalization issue: function of hospital and elderly care.
- Mixed medical treatment issue: >Top
- Additional portion beyond the coverage by medical insurance is reasonable (add-on medical fee); selection by quality of services of medical institutions.
- Mixed elderly care system:
- add-on prices by specialists beyond nursing care insurance; such optional services can be evaluated by users; easier than mixed medical treatment.
- Mixed childcare system:
- Disparity of authorized nursery school and unauthorized one.
- Urban policies:
- Compact city: shift of habitants from underpopulated area to city center; (depopulated marginal village)
- shuttered street issue;
- fixed asset tax is a usage fee of city space.
- utilization of private sector.
- use of upper space of roads; presently prohibited by law.
- highway charge; 'Congestion charge' applies high charges during congestion time, >Toprather than limit inflow of card in congestion.
- Congestion charge is applicable in railway traffic; making more smooth use of railways.
>Top 9. Reconstruction after the Disaster:
- Reconstruction fund:
- several ten trillion yen is needed for reconstruction of Tohoku area.
- the scale and fiscal background are different from Hanshin earthquake in 1995,
- more elderly populated prefecture of Tohoku areas (Iwate, Miyagi, and Fukushima) 22.4% no less than 65 years (2.2% higher than Japanese average), and more depending agriculture and marine industries; about 15% lower income than the average.
- thus simple recovery to the pre-disaster period would not be the solution; urging revitalization from zero-basis.
- The impact of TPP:
- Is US is a healthy opposition party in favor of Japanese consumers interest, or mainly considering US interest increasing export of US products?
- It is reported the overall agreement of TPP was concluded in Oct. 2015.