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Japan’s key inflation gauge has risen further above the Bank of Japan’s target level of 2%, a result that will likely keep speculation smoldering over possible policy adjustments at the central bank — despite Gov. Haruhiko Kuroda’s continued commitment to ultralow rates.

Consumer prices excluding fresh food climbed at a faster pace of 2.2% in June from a year earlier, with the main contributors being energy costs amplified by a weaker yen and higher processed food prices, according to internal affairs ministry data released Friday.

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