HOT MANIKI NEKO NEWS FLASH! According to the Chunichi Newspaper, the type of best selling Maneki Neko has changed drastically since 2008. From around 2000 to 2007, 90% of the lucky cats sold in Tokoname, one of the main pottery towns in Aichi prefecture, had their left paw up, to attract customers and 10% of the cat had their right paw up, to attract money.
However, in 2008, when the derivatives disaster almost wiped out the world economy (known as the Lehman Shock in Japan), everything changed. Nowadays, lucky cats with both paws up became more popular, to make sure that nobody would interpret both paws up as a gesture meaning “I give up!”, Japanese craftsman decided to create the cat with one paw raised slightly higher than the other paw.
Today, 70% of lucky cats sold have both paws raised (to beckon both customers and money), 20% have the right paw raised (money) and 10% have the left paw raised (customers). The economic crisis is continuing in Japan. People and companies have different wishes at different times, and the Maneki Neko craftsman has adapted to the times.