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Kyodo economic news summary -3-.

TOKYO, Feb. 12 Kyodo

---------- Suzuki to recall 4-wheel all terrain vehicles containing asbestos

TOKYO - Suzuki Motor Corp. said Friday it will recall four-wheel all terrain vehicles that use parts containing asbestos beyond the legal permissible level.

While saying no health problems have been reported over the quad bikes sold in Japan, Suzuki said it will replace the parts with new ones.

---------- Sapporo's Terasaka to be promoted to president in late March

TOKYO - Sapporo Breweries Ltd. said Friday it has nominated Senior Managing Director Fumiaki Terasaka as the successor to President Masaru Fukunaga.

After Terasaka, 60, assumes the presidency on March 25 as planned, Fukunaga, 62, will become adviser to the company, a core unit of Sapporo Holdings Ltd.

---------- Japan's consumer sentiment improves for 1st time in 3 months

TOKYO - Japan's consumer confidence rebounded in January after two months of sharp deterioration as uncertainty over economic prospects eased at the beginning of 2010, the government said Friday.

The index of sentiment among households made up of two or more people gained 1.4 points from December to 39.0, the Cabinet Office said. But the gauge remained below the threshold of 50, indicating that pessimistic views outnumber optimistic ones.

---------- January beer shipments drop 13 percent in Japan

TOKYO - Domestic shipments of beer and beer-like drinks in January slumped 12.9 percent from a year earlier to 19.43 million cases, hitting the lowest level for the reporting month since 1992 when statistics began, according to data released Friday by major brewers.

Overall shipments declined for the first time in two months as regular beer shipments tumbled 11.9 percent to 9.84 million cases due in part to lower consumption among young people. One case holds 20 633-milliliter bottles.

---------- Toyota to disclose more info on safety fixes not subject to recall

NAGOYA - Toyota Motor Corp. will disclose more information on safety repairs it carries out that are not the subject of recalls amid growing criticism that the automaker has covered up complaints about its best-selling Prius hybrid, company officials said Friday.

Automakers often make adjustments to new models in response to customer feedback, but such repairs are not usually publicized.

---------- Yamaha falls into red with group net loss of 216 bil. yen in 2009

TOKYO - Yamaha Motor Co. said Friday it posted a consolidated net loss of 216.15 billion yen in the year ended December, reversal from a profit of 1.85 billion yen in the preceding year.

Sales tumbled 28.1 percent to 1.15 trillion yen as motorcycle sales nosedived particularly in the United States and Europe amid the economic downturn triggered by the global financial crisis, the company said.

---------- GE sues Mitsubishi Heavy for wind power patent infringement

NEW YORK - General Electric Co. on Thursday sued Japan's Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. for allegedly infringing two GE wind power generation technology patents.

The suit filed in federal court in Texas demanded damages and asked for an injunction barring the Japanese firm from selling wind power turbines using the relevant patented technologies.

---------- Tokyo stocks rise as EU's pledge ease Greece worries, resources gain

TOKYO - The Nikkei stock index rose Friday to close above 10,000 for the first time in a week with resource-linked shares buoyed by higher commodity prices and investors returning from a national holiday slightly relieved by Europe's pledge to support debt-ridden Greece.

The 225-issue Nikkei Stock Average gained 128.20 points, or 1.29 percent, from Wednesday to 10,092.19, its first close above the threshold since Feb. 5. The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange was up 8.66 points, or 0.98 percent, to 892.16.
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Publication:Japan Weekly Monitor
Date:Feb 16, 2010
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