Japan’s prices increased at their fastest pace in more than four decades in December, stoking expectations the country’s central bank could finally move away from ultra-low interest rates.
According to government data, consumer prices rose by 4 percent year-year, the sharpest since 1981.
The price growth in November of 3.7 percent was also the highest in 4 decades.
The inflation figures come days after the Bank of Japan decided not to shift away from its Ultra-easy monetary policy which has bucked international trade toward higher interest rates.
Markets in Asia-Pacific traded high on Friday as investors digested Japan’s inflation data.
The Nikkei rose 225 points at 0.32%, Topix traded 0.4% higher, Kospi in South Korea rose 0.37%, Kosdaq gained 0.62%, the S&P/ASX 200 pared earlier losses to gain 0.26% in Australia while Hang Seng in Hong Kong rose 1% and Hang Seng Tech index rose 1.59% leading the gains in the region.
In mainland China, the Shanghai composite rose by 0.54 while the Shenzhen component rose by 0.4% as China’s central bank left 1-year and 5-year loan prime rates unchanged.
Companies in Japan also plan to raise wages by the end of this year due to high prices in the country.