Japan's domestic asset-backed market was busy in recent weeks, though not as busy as investors desperate for investment opportunities would have liked.

"Japanese investors are very hungry for ABS for the time being, but there is not enough in the market. Even straight bonds are very scarce," commented one structured finance banker in Tokyo. Strong Japanese investor demand for yen-denominated assets is one reason why a number of repeat ABS issuers are turning to domestic investors rather than the Euromarket, he added.

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