28 Jan '11, 1am

Japan consumer prices slide, unemployment eases

TOKYO: Japan's consumer prices continued to slide in December, marking the 22nd straight monthly decline as the economy remained mired in deflation, government data showed Friday. However the rate of decline eased slightly from the previous month, supporting the Bank of Japan's view that the country will return to inflation in the fiscal year starting in April. The BoJ has left its key rate near zero in an ongoing battle with falling prices, which prompt consumers to defer purchase decisions therefore clouding the outlook for corporate investment and dragging on Japanese growth. Japan's core consumer price index, excluding volatile food items, fell 0.4 per cent in December on-year, slightly better than market expectations of a 0.5 per cent fall according to a Dow Jones Newswires poll of analysts. Prices fell by 0.5 per cent in November. For 2010, Japan's core consumer pric...

Full article: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/afp_asiapacific_bu...

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