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JAPAN DAYBOOK: Capital Spending Figures, BOJ’s Noda Speaks

Bank of Japan policy board member Tadao Noda speaks to business leaders in Kumamoto, southern Japan. Capital spending figures for the fourth quarter will show if Japanese companies’ spending continues. Spending rose for the first time in more than three years in the third quarter, and six economists surveyed by Bloomberg expect spending to increase again.

WHAT TO WATCH *Corporate capital spending figures for the fourth quarter are released at 8:50 a.m. *Bank of Japan policy board member Tadao Noda gives a speech in Kumamoto at 10:30 a.m., then meets reporters at 2:30 p.m. *Fujitsu (6702 JT) gives a briefing on its e-book business at 10:30 a.m. *Freescale gives a briefing on a new microcontroller at 11:30 a.m. *RBS Securities’ William O’Donnell gives a seminar on the market outlook at 1 p.m. *Marc Faber, publisher of the Gloom, Boom & Doom report, speaks at the CLSA Japan forum on policy makers’ errors. 4 p.m. *Eisai’s (4523 JT) CEO Haruo Naito briefs on its business plan at 4 p.m. *Calbee (2229 JT) releases the terms of new share sale ahead of its listing on March 11. Time not available. *US clothing chain The Gap opens a new flagship store in Tokyo’s upmarket Ginza district.

EQUITY PREVIEW *Astellas Pharma (4503 JT) set a price of 3,050 yen each on a sale of existing shares. *Fast Retailing (9983 JT) said sales at its Uniqlo stores fell 5 percent in February from a year earlier. *Itochu (8001 JT) will buy Kwik-Fit, a U.K. auto-repair chain for 637 million pounds (85 billion yen). *Ito En (2593 JT) said nine-month net income rose 44 percent. *Kobe Steel (5406 JT) won’t join the planned merger Nippon Steel and Sumitomo Metal Industries, the company’s president told the Nikkei newspaper. *McDonald’s Japan (2702 JQ) will spend 20 billion a year for the next three to four years to upgrade or open bigger stores, the Nikkei newspaper said. *NEC (6701 JT) was placed on watch for a possible downgrade at Standard & Poor’s. *Toyota Motor (7203 JT) sales in China for February rose 97 percent on year, China Business Indepth said. *Toyota Tsusho (8015 JT) will sell a 13 percent stake in an Australian coal mine venture to Nippon Steel, JFE, Posco and Chubu Electric. *Yushiro Chemical Industry (5013 JT) will sell existing shares for 1,197 yen each to raise as much as 1.3 billion yen.

ANALYST RATINGS FOR NIKKEI 225 COMPANIES *NSK (6471 JT) initiated “outperform” at Daiwa *Mitsubishi Estate (8802 JT) cut to “neutral” at Mizuho *Sumitomo Realty (8830 JT) cut to “neutral” at Mizuho *Okuma (6103 JT) initiated “buy” at Nomura

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