Tokyo’s Honesty Shines: Record ¥4.4 Billion in Lost Cash Returned in 2023

Tokyo residents solidified their reputation for honesty in 2023, with a record ¥4.4 billion (approximately $29.1 million) in lost cash handed in to police stations.  This surpasses the previous record of ¥3.99 billion set in 2022.


The Metropolitan Police Department reported a 19.9% year-on-year increase in lost items turned in, reflecting a return to normalcy after pandemic restrictions eased. Public transportation emerged as a common location for lost valuables,with the largest single reported amount being a hefty ¥16.8 million found in Shinjuku Ward.


While not all lost cash finds their way back to rightful owners (¥8.0 billion was reported lost in total), a significant portion is returned. In 2023, an impressive ¥3.23 billion was successfully reunited with its owners

Experts attribute this high rate of return to a strong sense of civic duty among Tokyo residents. Professor Izumi Tsuji of Chuo University highlights the importance of doing the right thing and the expectation of reciprocity within the community.

This news story exemplifies Tokyo’s reputation for honesty and strong social cohesion. It highlights the importance of civic duty and the positive impact it can have on a community.

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