In the post meeting press conference, BoJ Governor Haruhiko Kuroda warned of downside risks to the economy “particularly via overseas economic developments”. He added, “if trade frictions persist, that could have a broad impact on Japanese and overseas economies.” Nevertheless, he also pointed to tankan survey and BoJ’s internal hearings, and noted “trade frictions on Japan’s economy is limited for now”. There is so far no change in the view that the economy is “expanding moderately”. Also, ” momentum for achieving our price target is sustained.”

Kuroda also sounded open to more easing and noted “If we think doing so would be necessary to sustain the momentum for achieving our price target, we will ease monetary policy further as appropriate.” The options for additional easing include cutting the short-term interest rate target, lowering the long-term yield target, ramping up asset buying and accelerating the pace of increase in base money.

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