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Token amount

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Token amount

Postby ageingotaku » Tue 01.05.2010 12:14 pm

I am busy trying to write a "fan fiction" of one of my favourite anime characters, and she needs to buy something for a "token amount". IOW. The minimum amount that could be construed as payment. (similar to $1), is there such a thing in japan as a "token amount"? if so what would it be? is there such a thing as 1 Yen? and realistically what would it be worth in $US terms.
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Re: Token amount

Postby keatonatron » Tue 01.05.2010 1:45 pm

I'm not really sure what "token amount" means. 1 yen is the smallest amount of currency in Japan, and if you mean an amount that doesn't really have value but is technically an exchange of currency (and legally binding) then 1 yen should be fine. It'd be the same as selling someone something for 1 cent in the US.

I think I know what you mean about $1 being a common "symbolic amount" in the US. When my dad wanted to transfer ownership of a vehicle, he decided to sell it to the recipient for $1 instead of giving it to them, because the fees would be higher if it were a gift (or something, I don't really remember).

However, in Japan I think 1 yen would be more common than 100 yen (which is the close equivalent to 1 US dollar).

For one example, when starting a company in Japan, you have to create company stock and sell it to whoever will be the owner of the company. The smallest amount stock can cost is 1 yen, and people often do that (so they legally own the stock, but it didn't cost them any [significant] money to obtain ownership).
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Re: Token amount

Postby two_heads_talking » Tue 01.05.2010 3:08 pm

Keat, taxes and fees are based on the selling price of the vehicle. while your father could have sold it to you for value, you, the purchaser would have been stuck with taxes and fess for that sales price. He could have sold it for 100 dollars or 50 or 5 (again taxes and fess accordingly) since taxes on 1 dollars and fees are negligible, that's what people will do to sell a car to a friend or family member, especially if they want to gift it but not access any fees/taxes on the recipient.


as for the usage of 'token amount' it appears to be a phrase that the OP uses, I've never heard it used before. Could be a younger generations slang.
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Re: Token amount

Postby furrykef » Wed 01.06.2010 4:51 pm

Huh? I hear the phrase "token amount" and similar phrases all the time. I wouldn't call it "slang", and neither does Merriam-Webster
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Re: Token amount

Postby chikara » Wed 01.06.2010 8:54 pm

"Token amount" in the contractual sense is what is also called "peppercorn consideration" which in this country is often taken as being $1. I have no idea if there is a similar concept under Japanese contractual law.

two_heads_talking wrote:..... Could be a younger generations slang.

I'm sure all those stuffy old lawyers and barristers will be happy to hear you refer to them as "younger generations". :P
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Re: Token amount

Postby two_heads_talking » Thu 01.07.2010 11:54 am

furrykef wrote:Huh? I hear the phrase "token amount" and similar phrases all the time. I wouldn't call it "slang", and neither does Merriam-Webster


I guess it depends on what ponds you swim in.. (or rather what circles you commute.. it's not common jargon for me.. but, i'll be honest, i don't walk around with merriam in my back pocket either..)
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Re: Token amount

Postby phreadom » Thu 01.07.2010 12:44 pm

Am I the only person to whom this wasn't at all strange? I knew exactly what they meant by "token amount", I just didn't know what would be considered a token amount in Japan.

I've heard it used here in the US many times... it's like paying enough for something to say you paid something, but not enough to actually mean anything else... the $1 for a car from a relative, or $0.50 for some knickknack from a friend just so you won't feel like you were given something for free, or taking something without giving anything at all in return etc. :P
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Re: Token amount

Postby ageingotaku » Thu 01.07.2010 3:12 pm

Thanks everybody,
it does answer my question, or lets put it like this, I got a good enough feel for what the correct amount would have been in my story. Where I live (South Africa) the concept of "Token Amount" is not really uncommon, I suppose the idea does really depend on where one stays, and if it isnt really common in Japan I may have to do a rethink.
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Re: Token amount

Postby chikara » Thu 01.07.2010 6:38 pm

phreadom wrote:Am I the only person to whom this wasn't at all strange? .....

No.
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Re: Token amount

Postby keatonatron » Fri 01.08.2010 1:35 am

ageingotaku wrote:and if it isnt really common in Japan I may have to do a rethink.


Sorry, perhaps I wasn't clear enough. 1 yen would be the most common "token amount" in Japan.

Cell phones are sold for 1 yen (if you buy a contract), computers are sold for 1 yen (if you sign up for internet), and companies are created for 1 yen (if you personally supply the starting capital).
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Re: Token amount

Postby becki_kanou » Fri 01.08.2010 5:45 am

keatonatron wrote:Cell phones are sold for 1 yen...


Says the man who hasn't bought a cell-phone lately. :D The last time my husband and I got new phones (about 2 or 3 years ago) they did cost 1 yen with the contract, but we changed again 3 weeks ago and they cost us about 3万 each (spread out over 2 years ).
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Re: Token amount

Postby keatonatron » Fri 01.08.2010 9:49 am

becki_kanou wrote:
keatonatron wrote:Cell phones are sold for 1 yen...


Says the man who hasn't bought a cell-phone lately.


Says the man who just walked by the cell phone store and saw 1-yen phones advertised in the window :wink:

Many years ago I always went for the 1-yen phones because even they were so much better than anything available in the states and I was completely satisfied... But now that I'm used to Japanese technology and have fallen victim to craving the "latest and greatest", my current phone (purchased 1 year ago) cost over $500 (USD) :shock:
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