Emperor Akihito's abdication on 30 April may be seen as a momentous occasion in Japan's history since the last abdication was 202 years ago, but we do not believe it will have a significant impact on the country's economy.
The emperor's role is mainly symbolic, with much of his time spent on ceremonial events.
Moreover, during his reign, Japan's economy has weathered many storms, yet there are still highly profitable companies that have succeeded in becoming world leaders in their respective fields.
Indeed, from many a fund manager's perspective, a company's performance is not always driven by an economy's growth trajectory and so prefer to focus on individual companies and their qualities.
For many actively managed funds' managers, Japan is seen as an exciting market to be in. For a start, it has thousands of listed large, medium or smaller sized companies and, in general, many are not well covered by sell-side industry analysts.
The large information asymmetry that comes from this lack of coverage means the market offers active stockpickers plenty of opportunities to generate alpha over time from hidden gems waiting to be discovered.
Moreover, despite the turbulence in global economies, the domestic environment is still favourable for Japanese companies, especially the smaller, more disruptive ones.
In this vein, many funds in this sector have a growth focus. For example, managers can find firms with globally dominant franchises.
These might be companies specialising in manufacturing, automation or robotics, niche electronic components, benefitting from global trends such as the electrification of vehicles, which remain popular, even though global demand has weakened.
Growth opportunities also exist in firms that are focused on the growth of the Asian region, as well as others that are creating their own pockets of growth in their local market through innovative products or services.
There are also emerging businesses that are willing to take risks and are disrupting traditional business practices.
For instance, online services companies and apps are becoming ever more popular as the Japanese consumer becomes more comfortable using them to make life more convenient.
Upcoming events such as the Rugby World Cup and next year's Tokyo Olympics should help increase the already strong level of inbound tourism.
These events should benefit consumer-facing businesses such as clothing retailers, department stores, hotel bookings and infrastructure and infrastructure maintenance companies.
More green shoots
Both the Japan growth and value managers we follow continue to see plenty of value in the market.
Many of them believe that Japanese stocks are on attractive valuations with the Japanese market's P/E discount having widened this year vs the MSCI AC World index while profit outlook has improved. Japan's P/B is also at a discount vs the MSCI AC World index.
Japan's unemployment rate has hit new lows over the past 20 years and more recently, female labour force participation rates and the number of temporary foreign workers have risen. Increasing wage pressures could be an issue for some Japanese companies.
However, this situation also creates opportunities for others, such as recruiters or companies involved in automation because the Japanese population is still ageing and there remains a labour shortage - problems which must be dealt with.