Major Japanese companies are bearish over the prospects for the country's crisis-hit economy, with a majority of them seeing a recovery as unlikely until 2010, surveys showed.
The Mainichi Shimbun carried out a corporate sentiment survey in late December, covering 121 major companies across the nation, including leading names such as Toyota Motor Corp and Sony Corp.
The poll showed that 41 per cent of the respondents said the Japanese economy would recover in the first half of 2010 and 24 per cent said a rebound would come in the second half of next year.
None at all expected the economy to recover in the first half of this year, while 22 per cent forecast that things will get better later this year.
According to a separate poll carried out by the Tokyo Shimbun, 68 per cent of companies said the economy would pick up next year, while 14 per cent said the recovery would be delayed until 2011 or later.
One in four companies said they have already cut or planned to cut temporary contract workers, according to the survey carried out in December of 208 major companies.
Japanese companies have cut tens of thousands of jobs, mostly temporary contract workers, as demand for cars, cameras and other products wanes amid the global financial crisis.