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Abe warms to $900 payouts for all Japanese after missteps

Awkward video and 'complicated' household subsidy put prime minister on defensive

Japan's request for people to stay home and businesses to curtail operations has hurt the economy.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is now considering a cash handout of 100,000 yen ($930) to every citizen as a way to mitigate the economic blow of the new coronavirus outbreak, a move that comes as he faces increasing criticism for being out of touch with the mood of the nation.

The proposal came during a meeting Wednesday between Abe and Natsuo Yamaguchi, head of junior coalition party Komeito. Yamaguchi urged the prime minister to green light the 100,000 yen payment to all citizens, regardless of income level.

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