Japan's governance reforms could be a game changer

Shareholder engagement is on the rise in Japan, and valuations are going to reflect an increased focus on ESG

David Brenchley 12 April, 2019 | 2:00PM

Japan may be known as The Land of the Rising Sun, but it’s a country that has never really shone as far as investors are concerned.

Years of deflation and economic stagnation saw the 1990s dubbed as “The Lost Decade” for the country. In reality, its trouble extended well into the 2000s. In fact, between 1995 and 2002, real GDP growth in Japan stood at just 1.2 per cent on an annualized basis – lower than all of its G7 counterparts.

During that time, the headline Topix index, in yen terms, almost halved. Morningstar data shows the total return for the Topix in local currency since January 1989 was just 2.75 per cent.

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David Brenchley

David Brenchley  

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