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BOJ to release survey on price expectations from next tankan

TOKYO, Dec 16 (Reuters) - The Bank of Japan will begin publishing from April next year a survey of how companies see price moves ahead as part of its quarterly "tankan" business sentiment poll, the central bank said on Monday.

In the quarterly survey, the BOJ will ask companies how much they expect prices of the goods and services they offer, as well as overall prices in Japan, will rise or fall one year, three years and five years from now.

The survey will show a distribution of companies expecting price to rise or fall by a certain percentage, as well as their average projection on inflation, the BOJ said.

The new poll will be available from the BOJ's next tankan survey for March, to be issued in early April.

Under its stimulus programme launched in April, the BOJ aims to accelerate inflation to 2 percent in roughly two years.

By pumping money to markets via aggressive asset purchases, the central bank hopes to heighten inflation expectations, and encourage companies and households to spend more now rather than later.

The BOJ has been exploring ways to track more carefully changes in inflation expectations -- key to gauging the effect of its stimulus programme -- in a country that lacks a reliable measurement of how the public sees prices changing.