Ryan had the headlines re the Cabinet Office downgrading its economic assessment for Japan

A bit more on this via the Japanese press overnight:

  • first downgrade in five months
  • Today the Cabinet Office will present an analysis of the slump in consumer spending at a meeting of Abe's Council on Economic and Fiscal Policy (citing, among other factors, anaemic sales of autos and other durable goods)

On that headline to this post:

  • Given the unsettled economic conditions, some government and ruling coalition officials urge caution on raising the consumption tax.

The sales tax hike is not due until April of 2017, so IMO it is far too early to get a definitive answer from Abe on a delay. There is an election coming up in Japan in a few months, hints at delays to the hike will be sued to bolster Abe's election prospects.

--

Also, separately - The Nikkei reporting that the BOJ has turned its focus from the money supply to holding down rates

more to come on this