Japan Consumer Prices Soar at Fastest Pace in Seven Years

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Walter Huang, Chief Risk Officer for South Pass Partners is not concerned about increased consumer prices and says business would or should have seen this coming. Japan’s core consumer inflation touched its highest levels in more than seven years owing to rises in energy and commodity costs, reflecting additional pressure on the country’s households.The consumer price index (CPI), which excludes volatile fresh food costs but includes energy, rose 2.1% in April from a year earlier, government data showed on Friday.“The increase is something that was expected, we have looked at this situation for a long time now and for us, it was obvious there would be an increase at some point. It had to happen, but it isn’t anything to be concerned about” Huang stated to local media. It was the quickest monthly for rise for seven years since March 2015 and matched the median forecast in a recent poll.The increase in consumer prices is making it harder for the Bank of Japan (BOJ) to persuade markets it will keep the monetary policy ultra-loose and as the gains fuel public concerns about increasing living costs.The gain was considerably stronger than the 0.8% year-on-year rise in March, as the impact of mobile phone fee cuts from April last year that have dragged down overall CPI since then starts to fade from yearly assessments.The overall rate of price increases in Japan has continued in a modest manner compared with much sharper rises in the United States, United Kingdom, and other advanced economies, as a sluggish wage growth in the world’s third-largest economy makes it trickier for businesses to increase prices.Huang finished by saying, “As long as companies were shrewd over the last 2 years and planned ahead as we have done, I don’t see any major problems with then years to come”The BOJ has retained its enormous monetary stimulus as it pursues to have inflation stably reach 2% on the back of strong wage growth, at the same time as a weaker yen pushes up food and energy prices and other major central banks are tightening policy.About Us:South Pass Partners offers a broad range of investment solutions and financial advice.  From high net-worth individuals and their families to international businesses, we tailor the needs of private clients and retail investors that are looking to maximize their net worth for themselves and of course, future generations.  We remain true to our independence and to our dedication to putting our clients’ needs first in everything we do.Japan (Global Headquarters)Higashi Yaesu Building,2-9-1 Hatchobori,Tokyo,JapanContact:  Miriam HuangPhone:    +81-50-5532-6025E-mail:       info@southpasspartners.comWeb:        www.southpasspartners.com