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Abe eager to use foreigners in housekeeping, nursing care fields

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Friday he is keen to see more foreign workers enter the fields of housekeeping and nursing care, adding this will make it easier for Japanese women to enter the workforce.

Abe eager to use foreigners in housekeeping, nursing care fields

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Friday he is keen to see more foreign workers enter the fields of housekeeping and nursing care, adding this will make it easier for Japanese women to enter the workforce.

Japan's consumption tax rate raised for 1st time in 17 years

Japan's consumption tax rate was raised Tuesday for the first time in 17 years, with concern mounting that the 3-percentage-point jump to 8 percent will hurt the economy and thwart Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's attempt to beat nearly two decades of deflation. The first round of the two-stage tax hike is aimed at covering swelling social security costs for Japan's graying population, which would help boost government tax revenues and restore the nation's fiscal health, the worst among major industrialized economies.

Japan's consumption tax raised for 1st time in 17 years

Japan's consumption tax rate was raised Tuesday for the first time in 17 years, with economic data suggesting the 3-percentage-point jump to 8 percent will hurt the economy and thwart Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's attempt to beat nearly two decades of deflation. The first round of the two-stage tax hike is aimed at covering swelling social security costs for Japan's graying population, which would help boost government tax revenues and restore the nation's fiscal health, the worst among major industrialized economies.

Feds turning corner in deficit fight, posts $2.16 billion surplus in January

OTTAWA - The federal government appears to be turning a corner in its fight against the deficit, posting a second consecutive monthly surplus in January and ahead of its goal of meeting the $16.6 billion deficit target for the year. The Finance Department reported Friday that the government had taken in $2.16 billion more in revenues than it spent in January, following a $1.15 billion surplus the previous month — the best two-month performance since the recession.

Spanish anti-austerity protesters clash with police; at least 2 arrested

MADRID - Spanish police and protesters clashed during an anti-austerity demonstration that drew tens of thousands of people to central Madrid on Saturday. At least two people were arrested. As a final speech was being given, protesters attempted to break through a police barrier and make their way toward the nearby headquarters of the governing conservative Popular Party. Riot police then charged the protesters, who hurled bottles and other objects, and beat them back with batons.

BOJ will continue its monetary easing program: Kuroda

LONDON (Reuters) - Bank of Japan will pursue its massive monetary easing program as the economy is only halfway to achieving the 2 percent stability target, its governor said on Friday. The BOJ offered an intense burst of monetary stimulus in April last year, pledging to buy assets aggressively to accelerate consumer inflation to 2 percent in roughly two years in a country mired in deflation for 15 years.

Japan shares to recoup recent losses on monetary easing, U.S. recovery: Reuters poll

By Ayai Tomisawa TOKYO (Reuters) - Japan's Nikkei stock average will recoup its recent losses and end 2014 at a level not seen since before the financial crisis, as more monetary easing offsets weaker demand after the sales tax rises next month, a Reuters poll found. The Nikkei <.N225> soared 57 percent last year, propelled by the Japanese government's massive fiscal and monetary stimulus to revive the economy, but has shed more than 11 percent this year as risk appetite has soured.

Greek public sector workers strike over job cuts, thousands rally

By Renee Maltezou and Karolina Tagaris ATHENS (Reuters) - Thousands of striking public sector workers marched through Athens on Wednesday to protest against planned job cuts demanded by foreign lenders as unemployment in the country holds near record highs. Teachers, municipal workers and pensioners joined the 24-hour walkout by the country's biggest public sector union ADEDY, which shut schools and left hospitals staffed by emergency workers while lawmakers debated a bill on public sector reforms.

Protesters, riot police scuffle during ban on demonstrations for German president visit

ATHENS, Greece - Greek riot police used tear gas, pepper spray and batons in scuffles Thursday with anti-austerity protesters who took to the streets despite a partial ban on demonstrations in the capital during a visit by German President Joachim Gauck. The scuffles in central Athens broke out when a group of several dozen demonstrators attempted to break through a police cordon set up on a major avenue as they headed toward the Finance Ministry.
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