Tokyo Electric Power too big to fail

Reuters reports that:

“The president of Japan’s Dai-ichi Life Insurance , the top shareholder in beleaguered nuclear operator Tokyo Electric Power Co , said on Friday his company would give serious consideration if the power utility asked for a loan.

He said Dai-ichi Life, the top shareholder in Tokyo Electric with a 4.1 percent stake, has not yet received an official loan request from the company.

Last month, Japan’s top three lenders and other banks provided a total 1.9 trillion yen ($22.6 billion) in emergency loans to Tokyo Electric, which is struggling to get its tsunami-crippled Fukushima nuclear complex under control.

Watanabe joined heads of other industry groups in calling for government help for Tokyo Electric, saying the utility is a victim of the massive March 11 earthquake and tsunami.

“From the viewpoint of financial institutions and institutional investors who make loans to and have equity stakes in Tokyo Electric, if the company’s business falls into critical condition, it would impact the entire country,” he said.”

The company is already in critical condition.  The life insurance company as top shareholder is hardly an objective party.


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