Japan Inc to pay bigger bonuses, cautious on higher base wages
TOKYO (REUTERS) - Japanese exporters will hand out bigger bonuses for the next fiscal year as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's policies drive the yen to multi-year lows, with Toyota Motor declaring its largest bonus payout since the global financial crisis. However, major companies, including Toyota and Panasonic, kept base salaries unchanged in the year ending March next year.
Since taking power in December, Mr Abe has been prescribing a mix of fiscal and monetary measures with an aim of lifting the economy out of two decades of deflation. The Prime Minister has also called for higher wages, seen crucial to boosting household expenditure, consumer prices and ultimately corporate earnings.
For the year ending March next year, Toyota plans to increase bonuses by about 270,000 yen (S$3,500) on average from a year earlier. In February, Toyota lifted its annual net profit guidance for the year to March by more than 10 per cent and said it expected its Japanese manufacturing business to be back in the black for the first time in five years.
Nissan Motor, Honda Motor and Fuji Heavy Industries also decided to raise bonuses while keeping wages unchanged.