Japan’s key inflation target remained at zero for the second month in a row, adding to concerns that price momentum may not recover after the worst economic contraction in history triggered by the new crown epidemic. Japan’s Ministry of interior announced on Friday that consumer prices excluding fresh food were flat in July. Economists had expected a rise of 0.1%. < / P > < p > at a time when the economy is reopening, the weakness of price data has added more troubles to the Bank of Japan, which has been trying to stimulate inflation for many years. Japan’s economy shrank nearly 30% in the last quarter, and there is a risk that weak demand may trigger deflation pricing again. < / P > < p > the recent surge in confirmed cases of new crown in Japan has made people more reluctant to take risks, which may in turn inhibit economic recovery. So far this month, air and rail passenger traffic by some major operators has fallen by more than half compared with last year, highlighting the weakness of summer peak travel activity. The Bank of Japan cut consumer price expectations last month, saying it now expects an average decline of 0.5% in the current fiscal year. President Kuroda has repeatedly said that he still thinks the risk of Japan falling into deflation again is very low. Private sector analysts, including Hiroshi Ugai, chief Japanese economist, said the Bank of Japan may eventually have to respond to weak inflation, but action is unlikely to happen in the short term.