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Bank of Japan pulls out disaster playbook to tackle coronavirus

Expanded ETF purchases and low-rate funds in play at next week's meeting

Bank of Japan Gov. Haruhiko Kuroda speaks at an upper house committee on fiscal and financial affairs on March 10. (Photo by Uichiro Kasai)

TOKYO -- The Bank of Japan is expected to boost purchases of exchange-traded funds beyond the planned 6 trillion yen ($57.4 billion) a year if needed, as part of efforts to limit economic and stock market turmoil fueled by coronavirus fears.

Such a pledge is anticipated at the central bank's March 18-19 policy meeting, when the BOJ also likely will consider incentives to encourage lending by commercial banks to affected small businesses.

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