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Bank of Japan (BOJ) will ease monetary policy this month to calm markets and counter recession fears triggered by coronavirus outbreak, a majority of economists polled by Reuters said. 

BOJ’s next move will be to expand stimulus, almost 90% or 33 of 38 economists said compared to 30% in February poll. 

Of the 33 economists who said the bank’s next move would be to ease, 23 expected the BOJ to boost stimulus in March, while six saw it happening during the second quarter. Others did not give a reply on the timing.

Only 13% of economists now expect the BOJ’s next move to be an unwinding of stimulus, the poll showed, sharply down from 70% in last month’s survey.