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Noda’s Nominees Approved for BOJ Policy Board by Japan’s Diet

Japan Nominates Economists Kiuchi, Sato to Bank of Japan Board
Handout photographs show Takehiro Sato, chief economist at MUFJ Morgan Stanley Co., left, and Takahide Kiuchi, chief economist at Nomura Securities Co. Source: MUFJ Morgan Stanley Co. (Sato) and Nomura Securities Co. (Kiuchi) via Bloomberg

Japan’s parliament approved the government’s nominees to the Bank of Japan’s board, confirming two economists who have signaled support for monetary stimulus. The two could join the board as soon as next month’s policy meeting.

Takahide Kiuchi of Nomura Securities Co. and Takehiro Sato of Morgan Stanley MUFG Securities Co. were approved by the government-dominated lower house today after the upper chamber voted in favor of them yesterday. Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda’s picks will take the places of two businessmen, breaking the practice of replacing members with candidates from similar backgrounds.

The opposition-controlled upper house blocked BNP Paribas SA economist Ryutaro Kono’s nomination in April after some lawmakers said he wasn’t a strong enough advocate of stimulus. Today’s vote may encourage politicians who are pressing the central bank to boost its 40 trillion yen ($503 billion) asset-purchase program to spur growth and end deflation.

Sato wrote in a May 15 report that “the prevailing political climate makes an end to easing unlikely” and said in an interview last month that the BOJ’s inflation forecast for next year was “wishful thinking.” Kiuchi has said that the bank may need to cut growth and price forecasts.

Board member Koji Ishida said today that the bank will continue to conduct powerful monetary easing to achieve its 1 percent inflation target.

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