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By calling inflation "transitory" last month, Bank of Japan Gov. Haruhiko Kuroda, left, sounded like his opposite at the U.S. Federal Reserve, Jerome Powell, last year. (Source photos by Tomoki Mera and Reuters) 
Market Spotlight

How 'transitory' is Japanese inflation?

From flour to fridges: Price pressures loom, but BOJ and experts say they won't last

MITSURU OBE, Nikkei Asia chief business news correspondent | Japan

TOKYO -- For over a year, the Federal Reserve insisted that the rise in U.S. inflation was "transitory," while evidence mounted to the contrary. It dropped the claim in November and the word is now a punchline for critics of the central bank, who say it should have acted to tame prices sooner.

Cross to Japan, where inflation this year is expected to hit 2% after three decades of basically no rise at all. Bank of Japan Gov. Haruhiko Kuroda last month sounded a lot like his opposite at the Fed, Jerome Powell, when he told the Japanese parliament he would stick to his loose monetary policy.

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