Pushed To The Limit – Japan’s Economy and Covid 19

Posted By on Jun 8, 2020 in Events | 0 comments

Delphi on Zoom

Speaker: Nicholas Smith Equity Strategist CLSA 


Cost: DN members 2,000Y; non-members 5,000Y

Please pay by credit card over Paypal. A Zoon link will be sent shortly before the event starts. 

The Nobel-winning economist Simon Kuznets famously said: “There are developing countries, developed countries, and Japan”, thus encapsulating the sharp contradictions observers love to highlight about Japan. 

Explaining the Japanese economy is indeed challenging. Easy to criticize for its love of fax machines, turgid services sector and mental homogeneity, it nevertheless leaves its critics with the challenge of explaining why it is consistently one of the most highly performing economies in the world.  

However, in this instance we have Nicholas Smith, CLSA Equity Strategist and Japan interpreter-in-chief. Nick, a rugged former Royal Marine officer, judo expert and scuba diver, has been in Tokyo for 30 years, including during Japan’s last two great ruptures, 3/11 and the Lehman Shock. With his deep knowledge of corporate Japan, few are better placed to understand how Japan will weather Covid 19. 

Japan has a history of being vulnerable to global crises, because exports is one of the few proven ways its economy can grow. Thus, although the Japanese initially boasted of their solid banks during the early stages of the Lehman crisis, the economy crumpled by over -5% in 2009 as global trade collapsed. 

This time, many sources are suggesting the impact could be worse than in 2008 in many countries, leading to an even greater fall in Japan. This ill wind is compounded by the economy entering the crisis already weakened by the disastrous consumption tax rise in 2019. 

Nick, however, is more optimistic than most. Come to this event to discuss why he believes Japan’s fabled resilience will once again be on display in the coming months.