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HomeBusinessApril inflation in Japan slows further to 2.2%, in line with forecasts

April inflation in Japan slows further to 2.2%, in line with forecasts

Reuters file photo
Pedestrians walk past the Bank of Japan building in Tokyo on March 18.

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan’s core inflation slowed for a second straight month in April due to milder food inflation, while remaining well above the central bank’s 2% target, government data showed on Friday.

The national consumer price index (CPI), which excludes fresh foods, rose 2.2% from a year earlier, after rising 2.6% in March. It matched the average market forecast.

The “core core” index, which excludes both fresh food and energy costs and is closely watched by the Bank of Japan as a key gauge of broader inflation trends, rose 2.4% after rising by 2.9% in March.

Inflation data is seen as key to further rate hike decisions by the Bank of Japan (BOJ), which is looking to boost rates, albeit gradually, after ending negative rates in March, a historic shift away from its ten year-long super-easy monetary policy. policy.

The BOJ has said a virtuous cycle of sustained, stable achievement of its 2% price target and strong wage growth is crucial for normalizing policy.

Growing expectations for further BOJ policy tightening this year briefly pushed 10-year Japanese government bond yields to 1% this week, a level not seen since May 2013, in the very early days of former BOJ Governor Haruhiko Kuroda’s unprecedented easing experiment.

The speculation is partly driven by continued weakness in the yen, which markets say could force the BOJ to push ahead with its next rate hike to soften its impact on the cost of living.

A weakening yen may push up import prices, but it threatens to further increase the purchasing power of households and put pressure on consumption.

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