Wholesale prices climbed 0.6% in May

Kyodo

Wholesale prices rose 0.6 percent in May from a year earlier as the yen continued to weaken and electricity and gas costs rose, the Bank of Japan said Wednesday.

The index of corporate goods prices climbed to 101.6 against the 2010 base of 100, the central bank said in a preliminary report. This followed the revised 0.1 percent gain logged in April.

The increase in wholesale prices reflects corporate moves to pass on the rising cost of imported materials to product prices to offset the yen’s sudden depreciation since December, a BOJ official said.

The BOJ’s radical quantitative easing campaign has weakened the yen in a monetary effort to halt deflation.

“As for prospects, rising electricity and gas prices, a weak yen and higher materials prices are likely to continue working to push up prices,” the official said.