Japan reports inflation hit 4 per cent, 41-year high in December

TOKYO, Jan 20 (devdiscourse.com) - Japan's consumer inflation rate hit a 41-year high of 4 per cent in December, as prices for everything from burgers to gas surged.

That rate is still relatively low, compared to some other nations, including the US Japan, the world's third-largest economy, has been fending off deflation, or chronically falling prices, for decades.

The last time core consumer prices rose that much was December 1981, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications said.

The Federal Reserve and many other central banks have raised interest rates to tame inflation but the Bank of Japan has kept its benchmark rate at a longstanding low level of minus 0.1 per cent.

A sharp weakening of the Japanese yen against the US dollar and other currencies has added to pressures on the BOJ and speculation has been building that it might soon shift course and start raising interest rates.

Japan's core consumer price index, excluding fresh food, rose 2.3 per cent in 2022 from the year before, the highest in 31 years, the ministry said.

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