Japanese brokers face testing times

Industry data shows a drop in Japan's commodity brokerage numbers from 97 in March 2004 to 53 today, according to information provider Bloomberg.

The Japanese Commodities Exchange Committee says total trading volumes on all exchange-traded commodities in Japan have fallen by 19% in a year, from 29.8 million in March 2008 to 24.2 million in March 2009. Trading volumes at the Tokyo Commodity Exchange (Tocom) have dropped 13% on last year to 41 million contracts for 2008, equivalent to less than ha