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Shirakawa BOJ Expansion Gets No Respect as Stocks Cheer Exit

Governor Masaaki Shirakawa expanded the Bank of Japan’s assets by 50 percent, introduced an inflation target and safeguarded his nation’s banking system from shocks. Yet when he announced he was leaving three weeks early, stocks soared to a four-year high.

Shirakawa, 63, left policy unchanged at his final meeting yesterday ahead of his March 19 exit. Investors are focused on changes his nominated successor, Haruhiko Kuroda, may enact, with the Nikkei 225 Stock Average rising more than 40 percent since mid-November in anticipation of more aggressive stimulus.