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Japanese firms plan biggest capital-spending increase since '08: survey

TOKYO -- Japanese firms, buoyed by government stimulus and growing profits, will usher in their biggest annual capital spending increase since the 2008 global financial crisis, a survey showed Monday.

The leading Nikkei business daily said investments in plants, equipment and other capital spending by nearly 1,400 surveyed firms would total 25.9 trillion yen (US$250.4 billion) for the current fiscal year to March — up 13.1 percent from a year earlier.

The percentage rise would be the biggest annual gain after a 13.7 percent jump in fiscal 2005 and the best showing since the 2008 collapse of Lehman Brothers triggered a worldwide financial meltdown, the Nikkei said.

Spending on overseas plants and other investments by a subset of the polled group — about 840 firms — were on track to surge 33.0 percent to 4.2 trillion yen, it said.

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