« スラチャイと英語を勉強しましょう! | トップページ | スラチャイと英語を勉強しましょう! »

2008年5月19日 (月)

スラチャイと英語を勉強しましょう!

05/19/2008 --The Asahi Shimbun, May 17(IHT/Asahi: May 19,2008)

EDITORIAL: Dim outlook for profits

企業と景気―収益構造を見直す好機に

The annul earnings reporting season has passed its peak rush, with most listed companies having announced their financial results for the fiscal year that ended March 31. Combined sales and profits nationwide rose for the sixth straight year, although the pace of revenue growth has slowed.

 上場企業の今年3月期決算の発表が山場を越えた。勢いがやや衰えてきたとはいえ、全体として6期連続の増収増益を記録している。

Japan's gross domestic product grew at an inflation-adjusted annual rate of 3.3 percent in the January-March quarter, according to data released Friday by the Cabinet Office. Lifted mainly by strong exports, the economy posted faster growth during the quarter than many economists predicted.

 きのう発表された今年1~3月期の国内総生産(GDP)の実質成長率も年率換算で3.3%だった。輸出の好調などを反映して、意外に高めの成長率を達成した。

Japan's economy started picking up in 2002 after an extended period in the doldrums. The latest data showed the economy continued to expand earlier this spring, supported by the higher corporate profits.

 現在の景気回復は02年に始まった。この春までは、企業業績の改善に支えられながら経済活動が息長く拡大を続けてきたことになる。

doldrums=沈滞、不振、無風)(corporate profits=企業業績)

Now, however, things are getting rockier. It is becoming increasingly clear that Japanese companies are getting hit by a triple whammy: the financial crisis triggered by the collapse of the U.S. subprime mortgage market, with its resultant drop in Japanese exports to the United States; soaring prices of oil and other raw materials; and the yen's appreciation against the dollar.

 ところが今、風向きが急速に変わりつつある。いわゆる「三重苦」が企業業績の足を引っ張る構図が顕著になってきた。米国のサブプライム問題に端を発する金融危機とそれに伴う対米輸出の不振、原油や原材料の高騰、そして円高ドル安の三つだ。

rocky=困難の多い、多難な、険しい)(whammy=不運、不幸、苦しみ)(mortgage=抵当、住宅ローンの抵当)

Companies predict rough times ahead. Toyota Motor Corp., for instance, has forecast a 5 percent dip in sales and a 30 percent fall in operating profit for the year ended March 2009. It is a fair bet that the combined profit of all listed firms that close their books in March will slide for the first time in seven years.

 09年3月期には、たとえばトヨタ自動車が売上高で約5%、営業利益で約30%の減収減益を予想している。3月期決算の企業全体で、7期ぶりに減益へ落ち込みそうだ。

dip=価格などの一時的下落)(slide=滑り落ちる)   

The economic expansion of the past six years has been driven by a positive cycle in which strong exports raised corporate earnings and in turn, lifted equipment investment.

If this cycle begins to reverse, however, corporate earnings could crater, tipping the economy into recession.

 これまでの景気は、輸出の好調で企業業績が改善し、それが設備投資の拡大に結びつく、という好循環に支えられてきた。この構図が逆回転を始めたとなれば、業績が悪化して景気が腰折れする恐れがある。

lift=もちあげる、高揚させる)(crater=へこみができる、穴があく)(tip=刈り取る)

Amid growing concerns about the nation's economic prospects, Toshiba Corp. announced its medium-term business plan aims to raise sales from the current 7.7 trillion yen to 10 trillion yen in fiscal 2010.

 そんな懸念のなか、東芝は現在の売上高7.7兆円を10年度に10兆円へ拡大する中期経営計画を発表した。

Toshiba has taken a series of bold strategic moves to concentrate resources in areas it deems crucial for a profitable future. The company bought Westinghouse Electric Corp., a U.S. company that builds nuclear power plants and provides related products and services, and intends to invest a huge amount of money in semiconductor businesses, including the flash memory production segment. Toshiba has also sold off its head office building in Ginza, the prime-shopping district in Tokyo.

Toshiba plans to increase sales 30 percent in three years by shoring up its digital consumer electronics business, which has been struggling to hold its own against competitors.

 東芝は原子力発電の米ウェスチングハウスを買収し、フラッシュメモリーなど半導体部門で巨額投資に踏みきり、東京・銀座の本社ビルを売却するなど、思い切った「選択と集中」を続けている。出遅れ気味のデジタル家電をてこ入れして、3年間で3割の増収を図るという。

semiconductor=半導体の)(segment=部分、切片、部品)(shore up=支柱で支える、支柱で補強する)

 思えば大半の日本企業は、米国の住宅バブルに引っ張られた世界的な好況のなか、受け身で業績を伸ばしてきた。6期連続の増収増益は、自力で切り開いたものとは言いがたい。

Over the past few years, a great majority of Japanese companies have been improving their earnings performances simply by riding on the back of a global economic boom, fueled by the housing bubble in the United States. Japanese companies cannot take much credit for their six straight years of sales and revenue growth.

revenue=歳入、収益)

As the business climate grows tougher in coming months, it will pose a real test for the staying power of Japanese companies. If corporate Japan takes a hard look at the way it does business, it will probably find many things that need changing in order to bring about a return to profitability from a medium and long-term perspective.

Supporting the bottom line simply by cutting labor and other costs doesn't lay a foundation for renewed growth.

 逆風が吹き始めた今こそ、企業の実力が問われる。収益構造を中長期的に見直していくべき部分はまだまだあるはずだ。人件費などのコスト切り詰めで利益を出しているだけでは、次の発展への素地はつくれない。

pose=難問を出して当惑させる、難問を出す、出題する)(perspective=眺め、眺望、見通し)

Companies that depend too much on the North American market for profits will have to recalibrate their business strategies to earn more money from their operations in other parts of the world, such as emerging economies. Even in hard times, companies must keep on investing in research and development as well as plant and equipment if they wish to stay in the game.

北米に依存しすぎている企業は、新興経済圏へシフトするなど、戦略の転換が必要になるだろう。研究開発や設備投資への資源配分は怠れない。

recalibrate=再計測する、測りなおす)

Since original products and services are key to success in this age, investment in human resources, through special training programs and other means, will take on increasing importance.

 独自性のある商品やサービスが決め手になる時代なので、とくに人材育成など「人への投資」が、これまで以上に大切になってくる。

Any big change in the economic environment offers a company the opportunity to take a fresh look at their management practices and identify the challenges they need to tackle.

This is clearly time for many Japanese companies to turn their attention to their own problems and reinvent their medium- and long-term strategies.

What Japanese companies need now is a totally new way of thinking that is not burdened by taboos.

 経済環境が変化する時は、いままでの経営の課題を洗い直す好機だ。足元を見つめ、中長期的な成長戦略を練り直す。聖域なき発想転換こそが、企業に求められている。

burden=負担をかける、重荷を負わせる)

--The Asahi Shimbun, May 17(IHT/Asahi: May 19,2008)

朝日新聞 5月17日号 (英語版 2008年5月19日発行)

|

« スラチャイと英語を勉強しましょう! | トップページ | スラチャイと英語を勉強しましょう! »

16-My family (私の家族)」カテゴリの記事

コメント

コメントを書く



(ウェブ上には掲載しません)




« スラチャイと英語を勉強しましょう! | トップページ | スラチャイと英語を勉強しましょう! »