Sci-tech

Retail inflation drops to four-month low of 3.85% in April

Retail inflation drops to four-month low of 3.85% in April

India's wholesale inflation or Wholesale Price Index (WPPI) for April increased by 3.85 percent for the dame month a year ago, government data released on Friday said.

Consumer price inflation for the urban areas stood at 3.03 per cent in April 2017 against 3.96 per cent in March and 4.68 per cent in April 2016.

The Central Statistics Office said the new series shows higher growth rates in most months during April 2012 and March 2017 compared to the existing one (2004-05).

"However, in the second half it will be nearing 5 percent, which is in line with RBI's trajectory and, therefore, a rate cut is not anticipated".

Industry body CII's director general Chandrajit Banerjee said: "These signs of an upturn in IIP are encouraging, as it is indicative of stronger manufacturing activity based on consumption demand than was getting reflected in the data captured in the earlier base of 2004-05".

In WPI, inflation in food articles declined to 1.16 per cent in April from 3.82 per cent in March, mainly due to deflation of 13.64 per cent in pulses. However, even that was slower than the 5.5% IIP growth seen in March 2016.

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IIP grew 2.7% in March according to the new series, compared with 2.5% according to the old series.

The factory output, as per the IIP's new base year, had increased by 3.4 per cent during 2015-16.

For WPI calculation, 199 new items were added and 146 items (like video CD player, khandsari and light diesel oil among others) were dropped.

For enabling dynamic revision of the methodology of IIP including the item list and the panel of factories during the currency of a base year, a Technical Review Committee, chaired by Secretary, Ministry of Statistics &PI, will be constituted. Within this, the mining sector grew 9.7% in March per the new series versus 7.9% as per the old data. "A new food index is being compiled combining the food articles under primary articles and food products under manufactured products".

The IIP base year has also been changed to ensure that it remains more relevant in the years that it is operational, Chief Statistician of India TCA Ananth said at the joint briefing. Inflation in manufactured products was steady at 3%. Ideally, they should move in the same range, as value addition at constant prices could address the price factors and broadly reflect physical growth.


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