Excerpt from the statement by the Bank of Japan:
Japan's economy has continued to recover moderately, and a front-loaded increase in demand prior to the consumption tax hike has recently been observed. Overseas economies - mainly advanced economies - are starting to recover, although a lackluster performance is still seen in part. In this situation, exports have generally been picking up. Business fixed investment has been picking up as corporate profits have improved. Public investment has continued to increase. With improvement in the employment and income situation, housing investment has continued to increase and private consumption has remained resilient; in these segments of the economy, the front-loaded increase in demand prior to the consumption tax hike has also been observed. Reflecting these developments in demand both at home and abroad, industrial production has been increasing moderately. Meanwhile, financial conditions are accommodative. On the price front, the year-on-year rate of increase in the consumer price index (CPI, all items less fresh food) is around 1¼ percent. Inflation expectations appear to be rising on the whole.
With regard to the outlook, Japan's economy is expected to continue a moderate recovery as a trend, while it will be affected by the front-loaded increase and subsequent decline in demand prior to and after the consumption tax hike. The year-on-year rate of increase in the CPI, excluding the direct effects of the consumption tax hike, is likely to be around 1¼ percent for some time.
Risks to the outlook include developments in the emerging and commodity-exporting economies, the prospects for the European debt problem, and the pace of recovery in the U.S. economy.