Japan prices rise for third straight month

This general view shows a facility at the Keihin Industrial Zone in Kawasaki on December 13, 2021. (Photo by Philip FONG / AFP)

TOKYO, Japan (AFP) — Japan’s core consumer prices rose 0.5 percent year-on-year in November, the third monthly increase after two modest hikes of 0.1 percent driven partly by higher fuel prices, government data showed Friday.

The advances follow 18 months of declines or stagnation during the depths of the pandemic, and Friday’s reading beat economist expectations of a 0.4 percent rise.

The core consumer price index, which excludes volatile fresh food prices but includes fuel costs, was up 0.5 percent in November, after edging up 0.1 percent on-year in both October and September.

Excluding fuel costs, however, prices were down 0.6 percent from a year earlier, according to the figures from the internal affairs ministry.

While many countries are battling higher inflation, Japan is still struggling to even approach its long-held two percent target, seen as key to turbo-charging the world’s third-largest economy.

© Agence France-Presse