Japan’s Prices Rise Most Since 2008 in Boost for AbeJapan’s consumer prices increased at the fastest pace since 2008 in July, as energy costs rise and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe makes progress in pulling the economy out of 15 years of deflation.Consumer prices excluding fresh food climbed 0.7 percent from a year earlier, the statistics bureau said today in Tokyo. That exceeded the median estimate of 29 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg for a 0.6 percent gain. Industrial output increased a less-than-forecast 3.2 percent from the previous month.“Japan is moving into real inflation,” said Junko Nishioka, chief economist at Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc in Tokyo and a former Bank of Japan official. “Today’s data is encouraging for the BOJ, and they are likely to keep monetary policy on hold.”Higher energy costs following the shutdown of the country’s nuclear reactors drove prices higher as the BOJ rolls out an unprecedented easing that helped spur a third straight quarter of growth. The central bank’s pledge in April to double the monetary base over two years has weakened the yen, which has tumbled 20 percent against the dollar over the past year, making imported oil and wheat more expensive.