Tokyo, Nov 20 . .- The consumer price index (CPI) fell 0.7% last October in Japan compared to the same month in 2019, which represents the third consecutive month of decreases and with the variation sharpest negative in almost a decade, the government reported today. Compared to last September, prices fell by 0.2% in October, according to data released by the Statistics Office of the Ministry of the Interior and Communications. The evolution in October of this indicator, which excludes fresh food prices due to its high volatility, is still far from the 2% goal set by the Bank of Japan (BoJ). In fact, the -0.7% level of decline had not been seen since March 2011, when Japan was hit by a strong earthquake and the subsequent tsunami that triggered the nuclear disaster at the Fukushima power plant. Japan closed 2019 with inflation of 0.6% and in 2018 the annual average was 0.9%. Including all concepts, the CPI had a negative variation of 0.4% last October compared to the same month of 2019. Regarding the sectors that most influenced the evolution last October, the culture and recreation sector had a fall 4.0% year-on-year, while food rose 1.1%. The decline in the recreation sector is linked to a campaign to promote national tourism, with discounts subsidized by the Government, launched by the authorities to try to offset the effects that the coronavirus pandemic has had on the sector. In its most recent analysis of the macroeconomic outlook, the Bank of Japan (central) projects that in the fiscal year ending on March 31, 2021, prices will have dropped 0.6%. .