We spoke with Haruka Urata, Chief Researcher at the Fidelity Institute Japan, who recently published research that highlights the financial behavior and investing trends across the Japanese financial landscape and is based on input from 10,000 Japanese businesspersons.

The survey, now in its tenth year, covers a broad range of important financial areas and was conducted just before the expansion of the Nippon Individual Savings Account (NISA) tax saving system, which was designed to promote a transition from savings to investment in Japan.

Here are some of the highlights and key findings related from the research:

Knowledge of new NISA

The research found that 54% of respondents were aware of the new NISA, and men reported a higher awareness of the new system than women. There was also higher awareness among respondents at higher income levels.

Interestingly, there was not much difference among age groups, but it is notable that 48% of Gen Z respondents said they had some knowledge of the new NISA.

Haruka noted, “Awareness of the new NISA system is high, and with the expansion of the tax-exempt limit, there is growing momentum to increase investment amounts. Inflation, wage increases, and the acceleration of information via social media are also factors promoting investment.”

Investment trends for new NISA

Until 2023 there were two types of NISA, General NISA that includes domestic and foreign equities, exchange traded funds (ETFs), real estate investment trusts (REITs) and mutual funds and a Tsumitate NISA, which is intended for mutual funds and for long-term investments. One person could select either of them, but not both. Since 2024, General NISA and Tsumitate NISA are incorporated into New NISA as Growth Unit and Tsumitate Unit, respectively. The investment limits have been increased for both.

When it comes to utilising the new investment limits, many general NISA users said they would invest the same that they are investing now. However, nearly half (47%) of those who invest up to the current maximum limit of 1.2 million yen said they would invest up to the new NISA investment limit of 3.6 million yen.

While many of those utilising Tsumitate NISA also said that they would invest the current amount that they invest today, 20% of those who invest up to the current limit of 400,000 yen said they would invest up to the new limit of 3.6 million yen.

Additional areas of research

In addition to analysing the NISA program, the research also considers a number of broader financial aspects, including:

  • how people access information on topics related to money.
  • changes in investment behavior.
  • workplace financial education and engagement trends.
  • public pensions and self-help retirement provisions.

Read the full report for detailed insight on financial behaviours in Japan.

This information is for scheme sponsors’, trustees’, their advisers’, and consultants’ use only and should not be relied upon by individual investors.

Fidelity refers to one or both of Fidelity International and Fidelity Investments. Fidelity International and Fidelity Investments are separate companies that operate in different jurisdictions through their subsidiaries and affiliates. All trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

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