Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

EIJS Working Paper Series,
Stockholm School of Economics, The European Institute of Japanese Studies

No 113: Competition Policy in the Japanese Banking Sector: Support Big Bang?

Kenji Suzuki ()
Additional contact information
Kenji Suzuki: European Institute of Japanese Studies, Postal: Stockholm School of Economics, P.O. Box 6501, S-113 83 Stockholm, Sweden

Abstract: While the recent “Big Bang” reform fundamentally aims at enhancing market competition in the financial sector, the Japanese competition authority, the Fair Trade Commission (FTC), seems to be rather reluctant to participate in relevant discussions. The present paper focuses on this aspect, relating the FTC’s reluctance to its traditional close relationship with the Ministry of Finance (MoF). The paper examines the structure of the relationship between the FTC and the MoF, considers its reason on the side of the FTC from Pfeffer and Salancik’s “Resource Dependence Perspective”, and discusses its effect on the recent “Big Bang” reform. Its main argument is that the FTC – MoF link is beneficial not only to the MoF but also to the FTC, and that this structure has yet to be changed even after the FTC began to increase its performance.

Keywords: Japan; competition policy; bank; big bang

JEL-codes: H11

16 pages, February 5, 2001

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