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In a full version of its quarterly report on the economic and price outlook released on Wednesday, the Bank of Japan (BoJ) cited several structural factors that may be behind Japan’s stubbornly low inflation, according to Reuters.

Key Highlights:

“Among them was a rise in female and senior part-time workers, who tend to join the job market in greater numbers than men for the same rate of wage increases and thus suppress overall wage gains.

Surveys also showed there have been no clear signs that households are becoming more accepting of price hikes in recent years, despite the country’s solid economic growth.

Such cost-sensitive households are discouraging companies from raising price hikes, particularly those in the retail, service, hotel and restaurant industries.

Many firms in such industries are coping with intense labor shortages not through wage hikes but investment in automation, another factor keeping inflation low.”