1989 in Japan

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See also: Other events of 1989
List of years in Japan

Events in the year 1989 in Japan.

1989 was the first year of Heisei in Japan as well as the all-time peak of the Nikkei 225 stock market average.



  • January 7: Emperor Hirohito dies; Prince Akihito becomes Emperor.
  • January 8: Heisei era officially begins.
  • February 7: Last public performance by singer Misora Hibari held in Kitakyushu.
  • February 13: The Recruit scandal breaks, and the company's former president is arrested.
  • April 1: Japan introduces its first national consumption tax of three percent.
  • April 1: Sendai becomes a city designated by government ordinance.
  • April 26: The Dragon Ball Z anime series starts on Fuji TV.
  • June 2: Takeshita cabinet resigns.
  • July 23: Tsutomu Miyazaki is arrested.
  • July 23: In the 15th regular election for the House of Councillors, Liberal Democrats lose their majority for the first time in party history. In the ensuing "twisted Diet" (nejire kokkai), it must cooperate with the Socialist-led opposition as it does not hold a two-thirds majority in the House of Representatives. The Uno cabinet resigns.
  • August 8: Reformist Toshiki Kaifu from the small Kōmoto faction is elected LDP president with 279 votes against Yoshirō Hayashi (Nikaidō group, a breakaway group from the Takeshita faction, 120 votes) and Shintarō Ishihara (formerly with his own faction that merged into the Abe faction in 1984, 48 votes)[1]
  • August 9: First Kaifu cabinet formed and formally appointed one day later.
  • September 27: Yokohama Bay Bridge opens.
  • December 29: The Nikkei 225 index of the Tokyo Stock Exchange reaches its all-time record high of 38,915.87.



  • Yen value: US$1 = ¥127 (low) to ¥144 (high)


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