Asia may be the economic region of the future, but its two major countries -- China and Japan -- are not without serious problems at the moment. Japan is in a period of economic stagnation that is verging on deflation. China is in a period of strong economic growth, but one that is always under threat to be interrupted by financial instability.

Current conditions in both countries became clearer to me when I visited them recently. The trip to China was under the auspices of a U.S-government-related agency.

Subscribe Now

Access to authoritative analysis and perspective and our data-driven report series.

14-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Complete access to articles, breaking news and industry data.