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Toyota Prius top-selling car in Japan for 3 months

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Taking up herewith Japanese Business Trend by Media in last week.
Business Trend in Japan will be read via these News. 
Aug 08 Japan to increase wheat imports as rain ravages crop (Bloomberg)
 Japan, Asia's biggest wheat importer, may increase purchases to a more than three-year high as rain cuts domestic output and lower prices help revive demand. The government is considering raising imports to more than the 4.91 million metric tons planned in March.
Aug 08 HP shakes up Japan's wireless market (BusinessWeek)
 It was a bold statement in small packages. On Aug. 5, Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) said it was planning to sell portable, Web-connected computers that can tap Japan's cellular networks without requiring users to be locked into a contract with a wireless operator. The computers -- laptops, netbooks, and touchscreen tablets -- will come with 100 minutes of free airtime and a built-in, pay-as-you-go wireless system when they go on sale next month.
Aug 08 Hermes-touch copter to whisk rich to Narita (Japan Times)
 Mori Building Co. unveiled a ritzy helicopter Friday with interior appointments provided by French luxury brand Hermes that will be used to shuttle wealthy customers between central Tokyo and Narita International Airport in Chiba Prefecture in just 30 minutes, brief limo ride included.
Aug 07 Japan Airlines announces billion-dollar loss (AFP)
 Japan Airlines, Asia's biggest carrier, said Friday that it lost one billion dollars in the last quarter as the global economic downturn and swine flu fears triggered a severe slump in demand. The group announced drastic cuts to its flight services as it braces for a second straight year in the red.
Aug 07 Toll discount expanded for Bon season (Asahi)
 The 1,000 yen fee for unlimited use of rural expressways was expanded Thursday from weekends and national holidays to some weekdays. For today and next week, the discount for cars equipped with Electronic Toll Collection (ETC) devices applies on Thursdays and Fridays.
Aug 07 Toyota planning a new sports car with Subaru (Japan Times)
 Toyota Motor Corp. will produce a fun but affordable sports car as the automaker seeks a return to profitability with vehicles that meet customers' desire for fuel efficiency without sacrificing style.
Aug 06 Toyota Prius top-selling car in Japan for 3 months (AP)
 Toyota's hugely popular Prius hybrid ranked as Japan's top-selling car in July, clinching the spot for the third consecutive month as tax breaks boosted sales of green vehicles, an auto industry group said Thursday. The Japan Automobile Dealers Association said Toyota Motor Corp., the world's No. 1 automaker, sold 27,712 Prius cars in July, up 24 percent from June.
Aug 06 Honda to sell Thai-made bikes in Japan to cut costs (Reuters)
 Honda Motor Co, the world's top motorcycle maker, plans to import Thailand-made bikes to sell in Japan, where production costs are rising. From next year, Honda is likely to start shipping 250cc engine bikes from Thailand, where the automaker produces three times as many motorcycles as in Japan.
Aug 06 McDonald's posts record sales, operating profit in Jan.-June period (AP)
 McDonald's Holdings Co. (Japan) said Wednesday that sales at all McDonald's outlets in Japan -- both directly controlled and franchise shops -- in the January-June period rose 4.1 percent from a year earlier to a record 260.62 billion yen as its strategy of holding unit prices of food items on its menu low proved effective.
Aug 06 Seven-Eleven franchisees form convenience store 'union' (Yomiuri)
 About 230 owners of Seven-Eleven Japan Co. franchise stores met in Okayama on Tuesday and formed a "labor union." The Kombini Kameiten Union is the first such association nationwide to have been established by convenience store owners.
Aug 05 NTT logs 20 percent profit drop (AFP)
 Japan's biggest telecom operator NTT said Wednesday its net profit fell 20.5 percent in the April-June quarter from a year earlier because of lower earnings from the mobile telephone business. Nippon Telegraph and Telecom Corp. (NTT) said its first-quarter net profit came to 139.6 billion yen (1.5 billion dollars). Operating profit fell 12.4 percent to 325.8 billion yen.
Aug 05 Japan snubs Australia as tourism falls (news.com.au)
 The number of tourists coming to Australia has fallen dramatically in the past year. Arrival and departure figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics show a 4.7 per cent drop in June compared with the same time last year. The biggest fall was in visitors from Japan, with 44 per cent (12,600 people) less over the year.
Aug 05 Latest Starbucks buzzword: 'Lean' Japanese techniques (Wall Street Journal)
 Starbucks Corp. built its business as the anti-fast-food joint. Now, the recession and growing competition are forcing the coffeehouse giant to see the virtues of behaving more like its streamlined competitors. Under a new initiative being put into practice at its more than 11,000 U.S. stores, there will be no more bending over to scoop coffee from below the counter, no more idle moments waiting for expired coffee to drain and no more dillydallying at the pastry case.
Aug 05 Japanese financial firms develop a yen for India (rediff)
 Just a fortnight ago, Japan's financial powerhouse, Nomura, bought a 35 per cent stake in LIC Mutual Fund in a deal that values the Indian firm at Rs 8 billion. Nomura, which in October 2008 acquired the Asian operations of bankrupt US investment bank, Lehman Brothers, employs over 2,600 people in India. Last week, it surprised many by issuing half-page advertisements expressing its intent to recruit in large numbers.
Aug 05 JAL wine to come in plastic bottles (Japan Times)
 Japan Airlines Corp. said Tuesday it will serve wine in plastic rather than glass bottles in economy class on some of its international flights starting Thursday to reduce flight loads. The move is aimed at saving fuel costs as well as decreasing carbon dioxide emissions by cutting down on total weight, JAL said.
Aug 05 Lawson stores begin installing chargers for electric vehicles (Japan Times)
 Convenience store chain Lawson Inc. has started installing equipment to charge electric vehicles at some of its stores to be used for its own electric cars as well as its customers. Lawson plans to introduce 40 of Mitsubishi Motors Corp.'s i-MiEV electric vehicles in fiscal 2009 through next March for use in going around franchise stores.
Aug 04 Toyota narrows loss forecast as stimulus spurs sales (Bloomberg)
 Toyota Motor Corp., the world's largest automaker, narrowed its full-year net loss forecast as government stimulus measures boost demand in its largest markets. The company expects a net loss of 450 billion yen ($4.7 billion) in the year ending March, compared with an earlier forecast of 550 billion yen, it said in a statement today.
Aug 04 Japan Airlines predicts low traffic for summer vacation (etravelblackboardasia.com)
 Japan Airlines is expecting its international passenger traffic to fall 3.3 percent to 338,453 during the country's summer vacation period from 7-16 August, the carrier announced Monday. The overall load factor on international routes is estimated to increase 11.1 percentage points to 84.7 percent compared to last year.
Aug 04 Luo takes over at ailing Laox (Japan Times)
 Luo Yiwen, the new president of home electronics discount chain Laox Co., said Monday he aims to turn the struggling firm around by putting weight on sales of duty-free products for Chinese customers. The new management is part of Laox's business tieup with China's Suning Appliance Co. announced in late June, which made Suning Appliance, China's second-largest consumer electronics retailer, the top shareholder in the Tokyo-based firm.
Aug 03 Seven-Eleven Japan OKs discount sales of food products (AP)
 Seven-Eleven Japan Co., Japan's biggest convenience store operator, decided at its board meeting Monday to allow franchise stores to sell box lunches and other food products close to their expiration dates at discount prices, according to sources familiar with the situation. With the decision, Seven-Eleven Japan has finally accepted an order issued more than a month ago by the Fair Trade Commission, Japan's antimonopoly watchdog.
Aug 03 Panasonic logs group net loss of 52.98 bil. yen in April-June qtr (AP)
 Panasonic Corp. said Monday it incurred a group net loss of 52.98 billion yen for the April to June quarter in a reversal from a year- earlier profit of 73.03 billion yen as sales continued to be sluggish amid the global economic downturn. Panasonic, formerly Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., booked a group operating loss of 20.18 billion yen against a year-earlier profit of 109.57 billion yen on sales of 1.6 trillion yen, down 25.9 percent.
Aug 03 Japan's new brew (Forbes)
 When Japanese beverage giants Kirin and Suntory announced in mid-July that they were discussing a merger, the news set off a wave of speculation over what the deal would mean for the country's beverage industry. A shrinking population that drinks less beer, coupled with economic woes that have forced consumer spending down, has meant both Kirin and Suntory have struggled to compete.
Aug 03 Perfumed products pleasing public (Yomiuri)
 An increasing number of corporations are smelling success by providing scented products and services in such fields as daily necessities, automobiles and telecommunications. Companies are trying to catch public attention with the soothing effects of fragranced goods in hopes of revitalizing lackluster consumption.
Aug 03 Japanese electronics companies start frantic restructuring (FinanceAsia)
 It's not often you hear analysts say cost cutting has gone far enough, but that's what a research report from Macquarie said about NEC Electronics' restructuring plans for the next 12 months. The Macquarie report sums up the greatest concern about Japanese technology companies, once the glory of the Japanese economy: they have little idea of how to escape the fix they are in, other than to slash costs.
By J.S. on Aug 11, 2009



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