Newspaper article The Daily Yomiuri (Toyko, Japan)

BOJ to Trim Inflation Forecasts for FY18, 19

Newspaper article The Daily Yomiuri (Toyko, Japan)

BOJ to Trim Inflation Forecasts for FY18, 19

Article excerpt

The Bank of Japan is making final arrangements to lower its forecast for the inflation rate this fiscal year from 1.3 percent to about 1.0 percent, while lowering its prediction for fiscal 2019 from 1.8 percent to the mid-1 percent range, The Yomiuri Shimbun has learned.

The revisions will be adopted at the central bank's two-day Monetary Policy Meeting of the Policy Board to be held on Monday and Tuesday. Due to difficulties achieving its 2 percent inflation target at an early date, the central bank intends to continue its large-scale monetary easing policy, sources said.

After the meeting, the bank will announce its quarterly Outlook for Economic Activity and Prices report, which will present the outlook for the inflation rate from fiscal 2018 through fiscal 2020. The benchmarks reported in the outlook heavily influence the central bank's monetary policy, which is aimed at ending deflation.

The figures for the outlook represent the median forecast among the nine members of the board that decide monetary policy, including Gov. Haruhiko Kuroda.

The growth of the consumer price index (CPI, see below), which excludes volatile fresh food prices, has lagged since spring, with the CPI in June rising only 0.8 percent from a year earlier. The number of board members who believe the inflation outlook should be revised downward has increased, as prices have not risen as expected, putting inflation targets further out of reach.

The Japanese economy has reached a state of almost full employment, with the unemployment rate at a historically low level. Companies have also posted strong results. …

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