Core consumer prices in Japan climbed 0.2 percent on year on April, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications said on Friday - beating forecasts for a gain of 0.1 percent and unchanged from the previous month.
Overall inflation was up 0.4 percent - in line with expectations and easing from 0.5 percent in March.
Among the individual components, fuel prices were up 4.7 percent, while communications equipment added 0.9 percent, food was up 0.7 percent and education collected 0.3 percent. Housing prices were down 0.3 percent, while medical care was down 0.6 percent and furniture dropped 3.4 percent.
On a monthly basis, core CPI was up 0.2 percent and overall inflation added 0.1 percent.
Individually, clothing prices were up 2.1 percent on month, while prices for recreation, education, medical care, communications and fuel also moved higher.
Tokyo inflation - considered a leading indicator for the nationwide trend, was down 0.5 percent on year in May - missing forecasts for -0.3 percent, which would have been unchanged from the previous reading.
Individually, furniture prices were down 7.5 percent on year, while medical care, recreation, communications, clothing and housing costs also were down. Fuel and education prices moved higher.
Core CPI in Tokyo plummeted 0.8 percent, well shy of forecasts for -0.5 percent, which also would have been unchanged from a month prior.
Among the individual components, prices were down across the board on month except for a flat reading in education.
Upon the release of the data, the Japanese yen fell to a 2-day low of 79.70 against the dollar, almost 70 pips lower than last week's pivotal resistance line of 79.0. The near-term support for the Japanese unit is seen around the 80.00/10 area.
The yen also drifted lower to 124.94 against the pound, 83.27 against the Swiss franc and a tad-higher the 100-mark against the euro as a recovery in European equities and the US stock futures boosted risk-appetite. The Swiss franc was particularly lower overnight as speculation on SNB action propelled the bear run.
The Japanese currency was also down against the commodity-linked currencies on renewed risk-sentiment, falling to a 2-day low of 60.26 against the New Zealand dollar and 78.01 against the Australian dollar. The yen was also testing yesterday's low of 77.75 against the Canadian dollar.
by RTT Staff Writer
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