Japan's wholesale inflation hits new high

TOKYO, Dec. 12 (Xinhua) -- Japan's wholesale prices hit the highest level in November, with the corporate goods price index rising 9.3 percent from a year earlier amid surging energy costs, official data showed Monday.

The index rose for the 21st straight month to 118.5 last month, reaching its highest-ever level, according to a Bank of Japan report.

The biggest contributor to the increases in corporate prices for the month was the price of electric power, gas and water, which rose 49.7 percent from a year earlier, while that of minerals as well as iron and steel rose 32.9 percent and 20.9 percent, respectively, the report said.

The corporate goods price index measures prices that companies charge each other for goods and services.

Experts here said that given the difficulty to pass on the cost pressure to downstream businesses through price increases, the operation space of most enterprises has been shrinking.