Japan's inflation hits 40-year high

STORY: Japan's inflation has hit its highest levels in 40 years -

-with prices jumping up more than three and a half percent in the year to October.

It means core inflation is now at levels not seen since the 1982 Middle East crisis that stemmed from the Iran-Iraq war.

October data also showed a yearly jump in energy costs by over 15%.

Food items were 88% more costly than a year before, led by alcoholic drinks.

Price rises in Japan are driven by its weakened currency, the yen, but also rising costs of raw materials, energy and global supply constraints.

It’s now the seventh straight month that nationwide inflation has remained above the Bank of Japan’s 2% target.

But the central bank on Thursday appeared untroubled by the figures.

The Bank of Japan’s governor reiterated that interest rates would be kept at near-zero levels.

And it would maintain monetary stimulus to support wage growth.

Economists say the BOJ sees recent inflation as mainly a cost-push episode, that will soon fade away by the next fiscal year as the cost of wages and raw materials falls.