Japan big manufacturers' mood improves in Q4

An employee working at the main assembly line of V6 engines at the Iwaki Plant of Japan's Nissan Motor in Iwaki, Fukushima prefecture.
An employee working at the main assembly line of V6 engines at the Iwaki Plant of Japan's Nissan Motor in Iwaki, Fukushima prefecture.PHOTO: AFP

TOKYO (REUTERS) - Sentiment at big manufacturers improved in December from three months ago, a closely watched central bank survey showed on Wednesday (Dec 14), in a sign a weaker yen and a pickup in global economy buoyed corporate morale.

The headline index for big manufacturers' sentiment stood at plus 10 in December and is expected to fall to plus 8 over the next three months, the Bank of Japan's quarterly "tankan" survey showed.

The reading compared with plus 6 seen in the previous survey in September and matched the median estimate in a Reuters poll of economists.

Big firms plan to raise capital expenditure by 5.5 per cent for this fiscal year to next March, versus a 6.3 per cent increase seen in the previous survey, the tankan showed.

The tankan's sentiment indexes are derived by subtracting the number of respondents who say conditions are poor from those who say they are good. A positive reading means optimists outnumber pessimists.