Japan consumer inflation rises to 2.8% in Feb.

Inflation in Japan rose in February at a faster pace than in the previous three months. The consumer price index, excluding fresh food, came in at 2.8 percent from a year earlier.

The core figure has ranged from 2 to 3 percent for six straight months. Compared to January, the CPI in February was 0.8 points higher.

A government program to subsidize households' electricity and city-gas bills has been putting downward pressure on the index since February last year.

But the internal affairs ministry says that effect was weak last month.