At close Mar 05, 2014
The NAV information is provided by the Fund's accounting agent. The price is as reported by the exchange on which the Fund trades. This information is unaudited and neither Aberdeen Asset Management PLC, its wholly owned subsidiaries, the Funds, nor any other person guarantees their accuracy.
The investment objective of the Fund is to outperform over the long term, on a total return basis (including appreciation and dividends), the Tokyo Stock Price Index ("TOPIX"), a composite market-capitalization weighted index of all common stocks listed on the First Section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange ("TSE").
Kwok Chern Yeh, Head of Investment Management, Japan, speaks to the current trends that are affecting Japanese equities.
The Japan Equity Fund, Inc. (NYSE: JEQ), a closed-end investment company, announced that Aberdeen Asset Management Asia Limited will assume investment management responsibility effective January 6, 2014.
Aberdeen Asset Management Asia Limited assumed investment management responsibility for The Japan Equity Fund, Inc. (JEQ), effective January 6, 2014. Over the next several months, Aberdeen Asia will align the Fund with the firm’s overall investment process.
Japanese equities posted relatively flat returns in December. The Bank of Japan agreed to maintain monetary easing amid improving business sentiment; however, capital spending plans were scaled back. Notably, the Tokyo Stock Price Index ("TOPIX") ended 2013 on a solid note with a one-year return of 27.03%.
The government unveiled details of a ¥5.5 trillion (roughly US$53 billion) stimulus package to mitigate the impact of the upcoming consumption tax hike. In November, the nation’s trade deficit reached a record as continued yen weakness inflated energy costs. Meanwhile, consumer prices rose at the fastest pace in five years.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s reflationary policies have stimulated inflation and growth, although Aberdeen believes that it is too early to say that Japan is heading for a sustained recovery. We believe that one of the biggest hurdles could be the private sector as Abe struggles to convince businesses to raise salaries and increase corporate spending, both of which are necessary to stimulate demand and growth in the long term.
Aberdeen believes that corporate governance is improving in Japan. Companies that we consider better run are beginning to take on independent non-executive directors even though it is not yet a legal requirement.
We focus on identifying companies with sound corporate fundamentals (including metrics such as returns on equity, operating margins, and cash-flow generation), attractive long-term prospects that represent good value—and with management teams that demonstrate a strong commitment to shareholders.Download Monthly Factsheet
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