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HOME  > Past issues  > 2020 November 11 - 17  > Despite pandemic situation, total assets of Japanese billionaires top 20 trillion yen
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2020 November 11 - 17 [ECONOMY]

Despite pandemic situation, total assets of Japanese billionaires top 20 trillion yen

November 12, 2020
As a result of the recent rise in stock prices, total assets of 35 billionaires in Japan has topped 20 trillion yen.

According to a list compiled by a U.S. business magazine, Forbes, the number of Japanese who have assets worth more than one billion dollars stood at 35 as of November 10 and the total of their assets amounted to 20.1 trillion yen. The richest among the 35 is the apparel giant Fast Retailing CEO Yanai Tadashi (3.9 trillion yen) followed by major mobile carrier SoftBank CEO Son Masayoshi (3.45 trillion yen).

These ultra-wealthy individuals, who are mainly founders of big firms and whose fortunes are mainly made up of stocks, have become even richer thanks to the rise in stock prices.

Stock markets are booming in many countries across the world. This is because many governments and central banks have implemented fiscal stimulus and monetary relaxation policies as part of measures to combat the coronavirus crisis. Such measures are, of course, important to support people and small businesses amid the pandemic. However, the money used to these measures also went to large corporations and wealthy individuals, then ended up flowing into stock markets, which led to higher share prices.

In addition, in the case of Japan, the Bank of Japan has injected money directly into the stock market. No other central bank in the world has such a policy. In this year alone, the BOJ poured 6.7 trillion yen in total to shares in the stock market.

As shown by this fact, the Japanese government has prioritized stock price stimulus over COVID-19 support measures for households and medical institutions. Such a stance should be called into question.

Past related articles:
> PM Abe’s use of public pension funds for boosting stock prices results in largest-ever loss [July 11, 2020]
> BOJ’s additional monetary easing is no solution to coronavirus-induced economic crisis [March 18, 2020]
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