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Economy

Japan's national wealth hits highest since 2000

Surging land prices, monetary easing help lift values

TOKYO -- Rising land prices helped Japan's national wealth rebound to its highest level in over 15 years, reaching 3.35 quadrillion yen ($30.2 trillion) at the end of 2016 for a 1.6% gain from the previous year, the Cabinet Office reported Wednesday.

The first increase in two years brought Japan's wealth near the 3.38 quadrillion yen recorded in late 2000. National wealth equals the value of all assets owned by individuals, companies or the government minus liabilities, which include national debt and borrowing by households or businesses.

Land prices led the growth, rising 2.7%, or 31.2 trillion yen, from 2015. The value of fixed assets edged up 0.6%, or 10.1 trillion yen, on private and public investment. Net foreign assets also climbed 2.9%, or 9.9 trillion yen, thanks to a current account surplus and other factors.

Total private assets grew 2.9% to 10.4 quadrillion yen while liabilities expanded 3.5% to 7.14 quadrillion yen, setting records for each. Japan's monetary easing is inflating the value of financial assets for households and companies as well as liabilities for financial institutions.

(Nikkei)

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