The Bank of Japan published the minutes of its monetary policy board meeting of June 15 and 16. At that time, the monetary policy board kept its negative 0.1 percent interest rate. It also maintained its JGB purchases at Y80 trillion. The vote on JGB buying was 8 to 1 while the vote on the negative interest rate was 7 to 2. The BoJ did not rule out further easing. Rather it said that it would take additional measures if they are judged necessary for achieving its price stability target. The BoJ also admitted that inflation expectations have weakened.
The meeting was held before the June 23 Brexit vote. At the meeting, some MPB members noted that they had to watch the impact of Brexit. Some members noted that higher service sector prices did not fully cover weak goods prices. Some noted that there would be slower underlying price increases due to weaker spending.
Minutes follow monetary policy board meetings with a four to five week lag. For example, minutes released on June 19 were for the meeting held on May 21 and May 22.
Investors who want a more detailed description of Bank of Japan opinions will generally read the minutes closely. The MPB may issue a statement after its monthly meeting but the minutes will be much more detailed. In particular they will reveal who voted for and against the Committee's decisions and provide a more detailed description of the MPB's thinking. As such, the minutes are a market mover as analysts parse each word looking for clues to future policy.
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