Retail inflation softens to 4.4 pct for Feb

Retail inflation softens to 4.4 pct for Feb

Retail inflation softens to 4.4 pct for Feb

The cumulative CPI inflation was lower at 3.52% in April-December FY2018 compared with 4.58% in April-December FY2017.

Some consumer prices that skyrocketed in January probably returned to Earth in February, indicating fears of runaway USA inflation that jarred financial markets were overblown.

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India's retail inflation fell to 4.44% in February driven by easing prices of food and vegetables. The consumer price-indexed (CPI) inflation was 3.65 per cent in February 2017.

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Industrial activity accelerated in January to 7.5% on the back of strong manufacturing growth and a rebound in the consumer durables sector, according to official data released on Monday.

"Hence, it can be expected that RBI may not dilute its position on expected inflationary risks and is likely to maintain status quo during the April monetary policy".

In January, apparel played a major role in boosting inflation, with the biggest rise in prices in about 28 years.

Among the CPI components, inflation of food and beverages dipped to 3.38% in February 2018 from 4.58% in January 2018 mainly contributing to the decline in CPI inflation. However, growth in the mining sector was muted in January 2018.

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As per use-based classification, the growth rates in January 2018 over January 2017 are 5.8 percent in primary goods, 14.6 percent in capital goods, 4.9 percent in intermediate goods and 6.8 percent in infrastructure/construction goods.

On the other hand, the industry group "Manufacture of tobacco products" has shown the highest negative growth of (-) 46.5 percent followed by (-) 32.4 percent in "Other manufacturing" and (-) 13.2 percent in "Printing and reproduction of recorded media".

"When it comes to consumer inflation, 4.4% in February may be lower than January, the undercurrent remains biased on the upside, making RBI disinclined towards any rate cut, though the industry would like it to happen", it said in a statement.

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