Japan gets tap on shoulder

Poor sovereign government finances are not just the province of Europe. Fitch this morning downgraded the credit rating of Japan to A+, one notch below both S&P and Moody’s. Fitch stated the obvious extraordinary amount of debt they have relative to GDP but said “the country’s fiscal consolidation plan looks leisurely relative even to other fiscally challenged high income countries.” As in some European countries, there will never be enough growth in Japan to sustain their debt so policy makers have only two choices, debt restructuring/writedown or print money and unfortunately printing money will be the politically easier decision. The BoJ may announce its 3rd QE in 3 mo’s tomorrow. Also of note and ahead of our own debt ceiling battle again upcoming, 5 yr US CDS is rising to the highest in 4 mo’s.

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