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implications of Japanese sales tax jump from 5% to 10%
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rxk22



Joined: 19 May 2010
Posts: 1034

PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2012 9:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mr_Monkey wrote:
rxk22 wrote:
Public pension schemes are unsustainable, and will be shown to be a horrible mistake for all countries who participated in them.

What they need to do, is to raise the retirement age in Japan, STAT
Why are Americans so fond of predicting impending DOOM when the world isn't organised in the same way as their knee-jerk reactionary worldview?

If there's anything demonstrably based on insanity, it's the US political economy and its way of funneling money into corporations in the name of the public good.

The only problem is when US banks require bailouts because of their irresponsibility, it affects, among others, the value of my mother's private pension fund.

Trust me mate, you're talking out your arse.

Really? So pension schemes are a fine and stable idea? Ok, nothing to debate then.
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Glenski



Joined: 15 Jan 2003
Posts: 12844
Location: Hokkaido, JAPAN

PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2012 9:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rooster_2006 wrote:
What about basic groceries (rice, vegetables, fish, chicken)? I know that in some countries, sales tax on groceries is lower (or non-existent) as compared to the normal sales tax rate, since everyone, including the lower class and working class, has to buy groceries.

If it doesn't affect basic groceries, then I'm totally on board with this.

Otherwise...aren't basic groceries expensive enough as it is?
You can get a 5 kg bag of rice for about 1000-2000 yen. Don't know how this compares with where you live. Some fruits are very high, even when in season. Same with some vegetables. Meat and fish vary, and you can get decent prices when they are on sale, so just be a sensible shopper. The priciest item here is gasoline, IMO (currently about 135 yen/liter).

Bear in mind that with 75% of the land area here being mountains, Japan has to import a lot.

Quote:
I can afford a 5% hike. I bank well in excess of 100,000 yen per month after living expenses and taxes. However, for a lower class or working class person making 2,000,000 yen or less per year, man, this is going to hurt.
Being able to tuck away 100K means you are not only thrifty but probably making more than the average person, pre-deductions (or have some special deal on rent). Hard to know since you didn't give enough details. As for someone living on 2 million yen/year, that amounts to 167,000 per month, which is bare subsistence wages, and although a few jobs offer such dismal pay, you won't find that common at all for us teachers.
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G Cthulhu



Joined: 07 Feb 2003
Posts: 1322
Location: Way, way off course.

PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2012 3:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

rxk22 wrote:
G Cthulhu wrote:
rxk22 wrote:
Public pension schemes are unsustainable, and will be shown to be a horrible mistake for all countries who participated in them.


Utter and complete rubbish.

It all depends on how the system is organized. There are sustainable systems out there. NZ and Oz, for two.


I said public pensions, not 401k's. Which is basically what Oz's is.



No, it isn't. Moreover, NZ's certainly isn't. And beyond both of those, you didn't address anything said or provide any actual support for what you felt so important to just state as if it were a fact.

You stated it: back it up.


Quote:

As things stand now, Japan's is fixed income aka traditional pension. Which is based on insanity, as well as it being open to pillaging from the politicians.


Back it up. Prove it. Show us that all pension schemes are doomed.
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Apsara



Joined: 20 Sep 2005
Posts: 2142
Location: Tokyo, Japan

PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2012 5:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
What about basic groceries (rice, vegetables, fish, chicken)? I know that in some countries, sales tax on groceries is lower (or non-existent) as compared to the normal sales tax rate, since everyone, including the lower class and working class, has to buy groceries.


As far as I know, it is across the board, same as it was in the late 90s when it increased from 3% to 5%.
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stumptowny



Joined: 29 May 2011
Posts: 237

PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2012 3:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

thanks everyone. got it.. so I am buying the ipod touch pronto and then frugal... steady she goes. was hoping food would get a break.. if drinking doesn't get a break, that could really hurt some gaijins. yeah, I think most peeps here get 250k a month. norm.

sales tax in the US, for many states, does not apply to food purchases. "State laws vary widely as to what goods are subject to tax. Food for preparation and consumption in the home is generally not taxable, nor are prescription medications. By contrast, restaurant meals are often taxed.[16] See the table below for a brief sample." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sales_taxes_in_the_United_States

if any of you learn about food exemptions, please share. would benefit us all as this is THE cost we cannot frugalize for fear of, uh, death!

also, I did read the tax will first go to 8% for 2014 then 10% for 2015. they are scaling up the pain. so polite. back in the US, in portland oregon, close to washington state, people go back and forth between states for sales tax savvy.. we are apparently stuck and gonna have to deal.
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Mr_Monkey



Joined: 11 Mar 2009
Posts: 661
Location: Kyuuuuuushuuuuuuu

PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2012 6:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

To reiterate, it will be 10%.

It's not, imo, a problem.
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rxk22



Joined: 19 May 2010
Posts: 1034

PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2012 10:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

G Cthulhu wrote:
rxk22 wrote:
G Cthulhu wrote:
rxk22 wrote:
Public pension schemes are unsustainable, and will be shown to be a horrible mistake for all countries who participated in them.


Utter and complete rubbish.

It all depends on how the system is organized. There are sustainable systems out there. NZ and Oz, for two.


I said public pensions, not 401k's. Which is basically what Oz's is.



No, it isn't. Moreover, NZ's certainly isn't. And beyond both of those, you didn't address anything said or provide any actual support for what you felt so important to just state as if it were a fact.

You stated it: back it up.


Quote:

As things stand now, Japan's is fixed income aka traditional pension. Which is based on insanity, as well as it being open to pillaging from the politicians.


Back it up. Prove it. Show us that all pension schemes are doomed.


Ok, that is easy. First of all, you have an ever increasing costs, ie more people getting old, and the old living longer. With the ratio of workers to retirees decreasing, I think it is rather simplistic to believe that a pension system is a viable modlehttp://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=4&ved=0CGEQFjAD&url=http%3A%2F%2Flongevity.axa.com%2Fpdf%2FWhitehouse_Life_expectancy_Sharing_the_burden.pdf&ei=030pULz3OMft0gGw4YHQDA&usg=AFQjCNHuV8b15LiiO2kMrE4GjSpD9JOZgQ&sig2=pEOeiaJJLZU30nfm2JVQsg

Which is discussed here. Also, in the same article, japan and the US, have the riskier pension systems, as the burden of longer life costs falls maily upon the govt, and not the individual.
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Pitarou



Joined: 16 Nov 2009
Posts: 1009
Location: Narita, Japan

PostPosted: Tue Aug 14, 2012 10:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

rxk22 wrote:
G Cthulhu wrote:
Back it up. Prove it. Show us that all pension schemes are doomed.
With the ratio of workers to retirees decreasing, I think it is rather simplistic to believe that a pension system is a viable model...

Also, in the same article, japan and the US, have the riskier pension systems, as the burden of longer life costs falls maily upon the govt, and not the individual.


Okay. I'll bite.

The link should be: http://longevity.axa.com/pdf/Whitehouse_Life_expectancy_Sharing_the_burden.pdf

The way I see it, there are two problems:

1. Shifting demographics mean that pensioners can't enjoy as easy a retirement as their parents did.

2. Those on private pensions have to suck it up. Those on government pensions have the option of forcing the government to borrow to fund their retirement.

So the problem isn't government pensions per se. It's democracy. Wink
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Pitarou



Joined: 16 Nov 2009
Posts: 1009
Location: Narita, Japan

PostPosted: Tue Aug 14, 2012 10:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

While I'm on the subject, this explains it all so much better than I can:

On Economics
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G Cthulhu



Joined: 07 Feb 2003
Posts: 1322
Location: Way, way off course.

PostPosted: Tue Aug 14, 2012 5:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

rxk22 wrote:
G Cthulhu wrote:

Back it up. Prove it. Show us that all pension schemes are doomed.


Ok, that is easy. First of all, you have an ever increasing costs, ie more people getting old, and the old living longer. With the ratio of workers to retirees decreasing, I think it is rather simplistic to believe that a pension system is a viable modle


You haven't shown that *all* pension schemes are doomed, which is what you claimed. You've simply stated that you think the US and Japanese schemes are not viable over the long term.

Yet you, like many supply side fanboys, ignore the rest of the economics you subscribe to. Firstly, there are many more models out there than just the US and Japanese systems. Secondly, even if you take the Japanese model, if you really do accept the economics that says the systems are unsustainable (change isn't allowed in your world?!) then you still have to account for the fact that your favoured economic theory says that as the population ages then wages for those working *should rise*. Supply and demand and demographic humps work in multiple directions. You're going to have to do a lot more work to show that *all pensions schemes everywhere are doomed to fail*.

Let's keep this on-topic for the oard and limit ourselves to the Japanese scheme and use other countries for contrast. For example, I would agree that the US is a perfect example of how not to organize a pension scheme.
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Mr_Monkey



Joined: 11 Mar 2009
Posts: 661
Location: Kyuuuuuushuuuuuuu

PostPosted: Tue Aug 14, 2012 6:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pitarou wrote:
While I'm on the subject, this explains it all so much better than I can:

On Economics
I have nothing to say on the quality of the Some Grey Bloke video you linked, but the one about young women is absolutely ace!
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rxk22



Joined: 19 May 2010
Posts: 1034

PostPosted: Tue Aug 14, 2012 9:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

G Cthulhu wrote:
rxk22 wrote:
G Cthulhu wrote:

Back it up. Prove it. Show us that all pension schemes are doomed.


Ok, that is easy. First of all, you have an ever increasing costs, ie more people getting old, and the old living longer. With the ratio of workers to retirees decreasing, I think it is rather simplistic to believe that a pension system is a viable modle


You haven't shown that *all* pension schemes are doomed, which is what you claimed. You've simply stated that you think the US and Japanese schemes are not viable over the long term.

Yet you, like many supply side fanboys, ignore the rest of the economics you subscribe to. Firstly, there are many more models out there than just the US and Japanese systems. Secondly, even if you take the Japanese model, if you really do accept the economics that says the systems are unsustainable (change isn't allowed in your world?!) then you still have to account for the fact that your favoured economic theory says that as the population ages then wages for those working *should rise*. Supply and demand and demographic humps work in multiple directions. You're going to have to do a lot more work to show that *all pensions schemes everywhere are doomed to fail*.

Let's keep this on-topic for the oard and limit ourselves to the Japanese scheme and use other countries for contrast. For example, I would agree that the US is a perfect example of how not to organize a pension scheme.


unfortunately, I have not researched ALL public pension schemes. The ones that are available for major countries(pop) wise, do seem doomed to become bankrupt. As, an aging population, which is occurring in virtually every post industrial nation, has a massive burden placed on the non retired pop. As the ratio of worker to retiree may approach 1:1, the ability to tax or gain revenue to pay the retirees will not be anywhere near enough.

The US SS scheme is awful, and at 30, I know it will not exist by the time I can retire. As, it is nearing bankruptcy as it is.

Japan's as well, is in great trouble. Many companies can no longer afford to contribute, and even Toyota was behind back in 2007. Then take it the rapidly aging population, and high GDP to dept ratio, and you will have problems as well. Only they don't publicize them as much in japan
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rxk22



Joined: 19 May 2010
Posts: 1034

PostPosted: Tue Aug 14, 2012 9:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pitarou wrote:
rxk22 wrote:
G Cthulhu wrote:
Back it up. Prove it. Show us that all pension schemes are doomed.
With the ratio of workers to retirees decreasing, I think it is rather simplistic to believe that a pension system is a viable model...

Also, in the same article, japan and the US, have the riskier pension systems, as the burden of longer life costs falls maily upon the govt, and not the individual.


Okay. I'll bite.

The link should be: http://longevity.axa.com/pdf/Whitehouse_Life_expectancy_Sharing_the_burden.pdf

The way I see it, there are two problems:

1. Shifting demographics mean that pensioners can't enjoy as easy a retirement as their parents did.

2. Those on private pensions have to suck it up. Those on government pensions have the option of forcing the government to borrow to fund their retirement.

So the problem isn't government pensions per se. It's democracy. Wink


True, democracy is as all plans, heavily flawed. The older vote in greater turnout, and they vote for their benefit, ie their retirement benefits.

As bad as Bush was, his privatization of SS was a great idea. Turning it into a 401k, would have been the best option.
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G Cthulhu



Joined: 07 Feb 2003
Posts: 1322
Location: Way, way off course.

PostPosted: Wed Aug 15, 2012 4:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

rxk22 wrote:

unfortunately, I have not researched ALL public pension schemes. The ones that are available for major countries(pop) wise, do seem doomed to become bankrupt. As, an aging population, which is occurring in virtually every post industrial nation, has a massive burden placed on the non retired pop. As the ratio of worker to retiree may approach 1:1, the ability to tax or gain revenue to pay the retirees will not be anywhere near enough.


Again, you're assuming a certain model of pension scheme. That doesn't get you to the point of being able to say all pension schemes are doomed.


Quote:

The US SS scheme is awful, and at 30, I know it will not exist by the time I can retire. As, it is nearing bankruptcy as it is.


It's what, 30 years away from that? That's hardly "nearing bankruptcy." And we've already agreed that the US system is poorly implemented.


Quote:

Japan's as well, is in great trouble. Many companies can no longer afford to contribute, and even Toyota was behind back in 2007.


Toyota chose not to contribute. It was never the case that it didn't have the cash. It simply didn't want to lower the profit levels in order to meet its obligations. Says a lot about the company, IMO.


Quote:

Then take it the rapidly aging population, and high GDP to dept ratio, and you will have problems as well. Only they don't publicize them as much in japan


Again, you're throwing terms around, but you're not tying any of them into an argument. What does the population aging have to do with pension problems? As I said earlier, population humps are not exactly unpredictable. In fact, you've got generations to plan for them. Ageing isn't, in and of itself, a problem for pension schemes. healthcare costs might be, but those are nothing to do with pension schemes. How does GDP/debt ratios come into it? How does Japan's ratios play in regard to govt investment & holdings levels (where those still exceed debt by almost 2:1)? It really does look like you're just conflating a whole lot of ideas into the right wing idea that "public pension schemes are bad". You suggest 401k schemes as better. Yet if you want to look at recent history (and if you're looking at demographics as bad then you've got to admit that actual historical performance is also a valid indicator) 401k schemes simply do not, on average, perform the function of providing a retirement income for people.

Interestingly, research shows that individuals are generally incapable of managing or running their own retirement accounts well, but those run by third parties tend to do well - or at least don't end up being wiped out. Which is to say, when the funds are individually owned, but are invested collectively by professional managers, they do better than the average individual's performance. Which is exactly what most public pension schemes that actively invest do...

Now, bringing this back to Japan's scheme: The numbers claiming funds are predictable. The amounts due to be paid in are also predictable. The funds themselves are a combination of reserves and investment funds. So where's the problem? Well, like the US system, the Japanese government has borrowed against the funds and simply not paid them back. And the funds themselves have not been particularly well managed. But does that mean the system itself is at fault? Or does it mean the management and operation of the system (ie. the humans) have messed it up or made it less viable?
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Mr_Monkey



Joined: 11 Mar 2009
Posts: 661
Location: Kyuuuuuushuuuuuuu

PostPosted: Wed Aug 15, 2012 7:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, but Tea Party! Glen Beck! Fox News!
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