Winter bonuses at major firms rise 9%

REUTERS/Thomas White/Illustration/File Photo
A Japan yen note is seen in this illustration photo taken June 1, 2017.

TOKYO (Jiji Press) — The average winter bonus at major Japanese companies this year rose 8.92% from a year before to ¥894,179, a survey by the Japan Business Federation showed Thursday, the sharpest growth since the current survey method was adopted in 1981.

The average winter bonus rose for the first time in three years as companies’ financial performances improved due to the reopening of the economy from COVID-19 restrictions.

“Momentum for higher pay is continuing” after monthly wages were raised by over 2% this spring, said an official at the country’s largest employers’ group, known as Keidanren.

The previous sharpest increase was recorded at the height of the country’s asset-driven bubble economy in 1989, when the average winter bonus grew 7.43%.