Contributor William Pesek is a Tokyo-based columnist writing on economics, business and politics for Reuters Breakingviews, South China Morning Post, Nikkei Asian Review, Forbes Asia, Japan Times and others. He was executive editor for Barron’s Asia, where he opined on developments throughout the Asia-Pacific region. Before that, he was Asia columnist for Bloomberg View, Washington DC-based writer for Barron’s, New York-based reporter for Dow Jones Newswires and American Banker and Bond Buyer newspapers. He wrote the 2014 book "Japanization: What the World Can Learn from Japan's Lost Decades."
Allegations of cronyism could bring Shinzo Abe’s five-year run as deflation killer to an end. While ultra-loose monetary policies may live on, one potential successor is more focused on North Korea than structural reforms. Markets are being sanguine about the potential fallout.
Price rises are accelerating in the Philippines, as strong demand, a weak peso and new taxes boost living costs. The central bank risks falling behind the curve. Inaction could raise bond yields, slam stock values and further dent Asia’s worst-performing currency.
Asia is bracing for a softer greenback. That could curb export-led growth from South Korea to Singapore and prompt a reappraisal of stock valuations. A U.S. policy shift could complicate Japan’s deflation fight and China’s ability to keep growing 6.5 percent annually.