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  • Microinsurance closes gaps in social safety nets

    TOKYO "I was very worried [about the hospital bill] because my father was in [intensive care] for a long time," said Sheryl Tan, recalling the two painful months leading up to her father's death last year. "So I was relieved when I heard that Medi

    March 23, 2017 10:00 am JST
  • Tillerson sets the tone for Trump in Asia

    BEIJING U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson used his first official tour of Asia to reassure allies and open the door to constructive relations with China. And just as the secretary wrapped up the trip, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un issued yet a

    March 23, 2017 10:00 am JST
  • Trump prevails as the G-20 softens its language

    BADEN-BADEN, Germany Finance chiefs from the Group of 20 nations reaffirmed exchange rate commitments and vows to "refrain from competitive devaluations" at their mid-March meeting in Baden-Baden, Germany. Under pressure from the U.S., however, repr

    March 23, 2017 10:00 am JST
  • The king gives Saudi Arabia's reform push a helping hand

    TOKYO In his monthlong tour of Asia, Saudi Arabian King Salman bin Abdulaziz succeeded in drumming up significant support for "Vision 2030," the road map for reforming the kingdom's economy and ending its dependence on oil exports by the year 2030.

    March 23, 2017 10:00 am JST
  • How does a steakhouse stand out in the US? With no chairs

    NEW YORK In the narrow, warmly lit space, casually dressed diners dig into steaks sizzling on slabs of cast iron, sip pinot noir and Sapporo beer and chat with friends. This could be any trendy New York restaurant, except for one thing: Everyone is

    March 23, 2017 10:00 am JST
  • Group aims for politically correct AI

    TOKYO Being personally offended by a robot may seem absurd, but one of these days you could find yourself on the receiving end of a rather nasty android. At least that's what the Japanese Society for Artificial Intelligence thinks. The group recentl

    March 23, 2017 10:00 am JST
  • 'Robotic harassment' is coming to a workplace near you

    TOKYO In many ways, robots are the ideal colleagues. They boost productivity, they only take vacations when they need a tuneup, and they never complain. Yet, as robots show up in more workplaces, some people are finding them to be a source of anxiet

    March 23, 2017 10:00 am JST
  • Advanced robotic hand promises fewer production headaches

    KITAKYUSHU, Japan Robots have transformed production lines, but they have an Achilles' heel -- er, hand, to be more precise. Their inability to grip a variety of objects creates a lot of extra work. Often, robotic hands must be designed to deal with

    March 23, 2017 10:00 am JST
  • Inside SoftBank

    How Yahoo Japan cured its 'big-company disease'

    TOKYO -- The younger brother, by 15 years, of SoftBank Group CEO Masayoshi Son was recalling the first time he met Jerry Yang, co-founder of Yahoo Inc. of the U.S. The encounter came in 1996, and "the event changed my life completely," Taizo Son sai

    March 23, 2017 10:00 am JST
  • Japan's land price uptrend showing clear disparities

    TOKYO -- Land values in Japan have risen for a second straight year, marking what could be the start of a lasting trend. But the market is highly polarized unlike in previous boom periods dating back to the late 1980s.The average land value across t

    March 23, 2017 06:46 am JST
  • Japan Steel Works to post third straight year of losses

    TOKYO -- Japan Steel Works is expected to post a 4 billion yen ($36 million) net loss for the year ending March 2017, the steelmaker announced Wednesday. This will be the company's third straight year of net losses after it earlier predicted a profi

    March 23, 2017 06:35 am JST
  • Sharp offers robotic rent-a-guide for Japan tourists

    OSAKA -- Sharp will target foreign visitors to Japan as the electronics maker offers its talking, dancing Robohon humanoid robot smartphones for rental via a rare collaboration with partners outside its business comfort zone.Railway operator Keikyu

    March 23, 2017 06:15 am JST
  • Shimadzu to boost investment in early detection of cancer

    OSAKA -- Shimadzu will bolster its medical business by increasing spending on equipment and research to develop technology that can be used in early detection of cancer.The Japanese manufacturer is researching technology that can detect cancer faste

    March 23, 2017 06:08 am JST
  • Tepco's turnaround plan a dubious roadmap to recovery

    TOKYO -- Tokyo Electric Power Co. Holdings' latest reform plan rests on rosy assumptions about the willingness of peers to assist in restructuring and the chances of a nuclear restart, leaving doubts about whether the utility will be able to pay its

    March 23, 2017 05:50 am JST
  • Japan's gas, electricity prices to rise again in May

    TOKYO -- Japan's 14 major electricity and gas companies are expected to raise rates in May for the fourth straight month, as the utilities pass on rising costs of imported fuels to consumers.Based on households using 260 kilowatt-hours of electricit

    March 23, 2017 05:30 am JST
  • Seiko to revamp luxury watch brand, taking on Swiss rivals

    TOKYO -- Seiko Holdings will embark on its first-ever major revamp of a core watch brand, seeking to better compete with Swiss rivals in the market for upscale timepieces.The Japanese watchmaker will raise prices and bolster the luxury image of its

    March 23, 2017 05:15 am JST
  • Toyota, NTT partnering on autonomous cars

    NAGOYA -- Toyota Motor will collaborate with Nippon Telegraph & Telephone on high-speed wireless technology in a push to commercialize even safer self-driving vehicles.The two companies will jointly develop technology for connected cars utilizing fi

    March 23, 2017 05:00 am JST
  • Markets suffer Trump letdown

    TOKYO -- Doubt has gripped global markets as U.S. President Donald Trump's economic policymaking appears to lose steam, sending the yen to a roughly four-month high against the dollar and dealing setbacks to shares in exchange-rate-sensitive Japanes

    March 23, 2017 05:00 am JST
  • Japanese school chief testimony may shed light on scandal

    TOKYO -- With the head of the nationalist school operator at the center of a widening political scandal slated to testify before Japan's parliament Thursday, lawmakers hope to get answers to some of the many questions still surrounding the affair.Cl

    March 23, 2017 04:40 am JST
  • Japan's startup stocks sink as Nikkei continues to tumble

    TOKYO -- The large slide in the Nikkei Stock Average is leading to a sell-off of stocks constituting Japan's major startup indexes, which moved downward Wednesday.The Tokyo Stock Exchange's Mothers index dropped 2% to 1,033.42, while the Nikkei Jasd

    March 23, 2017 04:40 am JST