Daikin, Panasonic join in Japan's price hikes for appliances

Companies losing fight to keep goods cheap as materials and transport costs rise

Nikkei -- Aug 01
The price hikes in Japan have spread to appliances including air conditioners, dishwashers and refrigerators, as companies such as Daikin Industries and Panasonic struggle with the surging costs of raw materials.

Japan's consumer price index for "household durable goods" such as large appliances rose 7.5% in June from a year earlier, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications reports. By product category, air conditioners increased 11% to 130.1, the highest index level since March 2009. The growth rate is also the highest in 15 months. Refrigerators climbed around 15% for the third consecutive month.

CPI for air conditioners and other products could remain high, at least for the near future.

"We will gradually raise prices by 4% to 5% globally" during this fiscal year ending in March 2023, a Daikin executive told Nikkei. The air conditioner manufacturer is boosting prices to coincide with product launches and other events, in response to rising costs for transportation and raw materials such as copper and aluminum.

Masanori Togawa, president of Daikin, said that shifting these costs to the company's shipping prices for retailers is a "top priority."

Panasonic will raise prices 3%-23% on nearly 80 products, mainly appliances such as refrigerators, starting in August. ...continue reading

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