JAPAN Surpasses U.S. As Worlds Number One Debter Nation

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This is from the International Herald Tribune

[Fair Use: For Educational/Research Purposes Only]

TOKYO - Japan became the world's leading debtor nation in 1999 as it continued to throw money at its ailing economy in an attempt to put it back on track to recovery, central bank data released Monday indicated.

Outstanding debt issued by the Japanese government reached 358.8 trillion yen ($3.33 trillion) in 1999, up from 324.9 trillion at the end of the previous year, according to a Bank of Japan report. That compares with $3.28 trillion in outstanding U.S. debt, down 2 percent from the previous year.

''It's quite a symbolic event,'' said Shinichi Sakai, a fund manager at Yasuda Kasai Global Asset Management Co. ''And it's definitely not good for the country.''

The Finance Ministry estimates it will have to sell at least 30 trillion yen in new bonds each year for the next five years to pay its interest bill and fund current spending, which would bloat total government debt to 507 trillion yen in 2005, equal to 93.2 percent of gross domestic product.

Japan is to announce fourth-quarter economic growth figures Monday.

-- Zdude (zdude777@hotmail.com), March 07, 2000


And today the YEN has reached parity with the US Dollar.

-- Tommy Rogers (Been there@Just a Thought.com), March 07, 2000.

>> And today the YEN has reached parity with the US Dollar. <<

I know I'm picking nits here, but the yen has reached parity with the US cent. It takes about 100 yen to buy one US dollar.

-- Brian McLaughlin (brianm@ims.com), March 07, 2000.

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