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JAPAN DAYBOOK: Sony, Toshiba, Toyota, Economic Assessment

May 24 (Bloomberg) -- The government releases its monthly assessment of the economy after a report last week showed the nation slipped back into recession. At least six analysts left their ratings of Sony unchanged at neutral to buy after the company said it had a full-year loss. Toshiba will add 700b yen to energy and environment spending over three years, the Nikkei newspaper reported ahead of a company briefing today.

WHAT TO WATCH *Government releases monthly economic assessment; last month’s assessment cut for first month in six *Sony (6758 JP) yesterday said FY net loss about 260b yen vs analyst’s ests. for 76b yen profit; cites tax charge, leaves op profit est. unchanged; at least 6 analysts maintain neutral-buy *Toshiba (6758 JP) to spend 700b yen on energy, environment investments over 3 yrs, Nikkei says; company briefing at 1:30pm *Toyota’s (7203 JP) centralized structure, skepticism of critics, lack of safety chief are flaws to address, panel finds {NSN LLNOKB0UQVI9 <GO>}

ECONOMY *Government releases economic assessment

GOVERNMENT *Morning cabinet meeting followed by minister briefings *Chief Cabinet Secretary Edano briefings; after cabinet meeting and again at 4pm

CORPORATE *12:00am Japan Association of Corp. Executives Chairman Yasuchika Hasegawa speaks at Foreign Correspondents’ Club *1:30pm Toshiba (6502 JP) business strategy briefing *4:00pm All Nippon Airways low-cost carrier briefing *Takashimaya (8233 JP), Lawson (2651 JP) and at least 14 other annual shareholder meetings

EARNINGS *2:00pm Nippon Paper (3893 JP): FY net loss est. 25b yen, op profit 34b yen, sales 1.1t yen; company revised May 11

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Steven McPherson at smcpherson@bloomberg.net

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