Apple Inc. (AAPL) raised the price of iPad tablet computers and iPod music players in Japan after a weaker yen that’s boosting importing costs prompted Toshiba Corp. (6502) and Fujitsu Ltd. (6702) to consider increasing prices.
Apple now sells the iPad Wi-Fi model with 16 gigabytes of memory for 49,800 yen ($493), compared with its previous price of 42,800 yen, according to Apple’s website. The iPod Shuffle music player costs from 4,800 yen, compared with the previous starting price of 4,200 yen.
“We made some pricing adjustments due to changes in foreign exchange rates,” Takashi Takabayashi, a spokesman for Apple in Japan, said by phone today. He declined to elaborate.
The yen weakened beyond 101 against the U.S. dollar earlier this month for the first time since April 2009 as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe spearheads measures to drive down the currency and end deflation. Fujitsu, a Tokyo-based maker of personal computers, said this month it plans to raise domestic prices. Toshiba said May 8 it may boost prices for televisions and PCs.
Japan’s currency fell versus all of its major peers today as data showing a decline in consumer prices added to the case for the Bank of Japan to step up its stimulus efforts. The yen weakened 0.3 percent to 101.05 per dollar as of 9:53 a.m. in Tokyo, trimming its weekly advance to 0.3 percent. It lost 0.3 percent to 131.83 per euro, having declined 0.7 percent since May 24.
The nation’s consumer prices excluding fresh food fell 0.4 percent in April from a year earlier, the statistics bureau said today, compared with a 0.5 percent drop the prior month. The inflation rate hasn’t been above zero in the past year.
NHK, Japan’s public broadcaster, reported on the price increase earlier.
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