The prices of goods traded among companies in Japan fell in May for the 4th straight month.
Bank of Japan officials said on Wednesday that the Corporate Goods Price Index fell 0.4 percent from the previous month. The index stood at 99.1 in May against a base of 100 in 2015.
The drop is largely attributed to the plunge of crude oil prices caused by the coronavirus pandemic's impact on the flow of people and goods. This triggered a decline in the prices of petroleum and chemical products.
Iron and steel also fell after automobile production and construction activities were put on hold.
Restaurant closures dragged down the prices of agricultural products such as eggs.
Bank of Japan officials say the pandemic's impact on commodity prices is likely to remain heavy.
They say some commodities could see an uptick in June, as the gradual resumption of global economic activity puts upward pressure on oil prices.