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Japan Prices Fail to Make More Progress to Distant BOJ Goal

  • Inflation maintains same weak pace of 0.5% in December
  • Outcome supports view that central bank far from normalization
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Gains in Japan’s key consumer prices failed to accelerate toward the Bank of Japan’s target in December, highlighting the ongoing weakness in the economy’s inflation pulse in stark contrast to its global peers.

Consumer prices excluding fresh food rose 0.5% in December from a year earlier, with cheaper household appliances and smaller gains in hotel prices outweighing the impact of higher energy costs, according to the ministry of internal affairs Friday. Economists had expected a 0.6% gain.