Retail inflation soars to 15-month high, industrial output growth slows

Updated: Dec 13, 2017, 11:30 IST | Agencies | New Delhi

Retail inflation hit a 15-month high of 4.88 per cent in November due to costlier fuel, vegetables and eggs, as per data released by the Central Statistics Office (CSO) yesterday

Retail inflation hit a 15-month high of 4.88 per cent in November due to costlier fuel, vegetables and eggs, as per data released by the Central Statistics Office (CSO) yesterday. The inflation, based on Consumer Price Index (CPI), was at 3.58 per cent in October. It was 3.63 per cent in November 2016. The previous high was recorded at 5.05 per cent in August last year.

The November inflation number is higher than the Reserve Bank's 4 per cent medium-term target, reducing the room for the central bank to cut rates in near future. Economists polled by Reuters had predicted consumer inflation to rise to 4.2 per cent in November, following unseasonably heavy rains that sent vegetable prices soaring. Vegetable prices showed a spike, with prices rising 22.48 per cent year-on-year in November. Higher fuel prices (up nearly 8 per cent) also pulled inflation higher, reported NDTV.

At its December 6 policy meeting, the RBI raised its inflation projection by 10 basis points to between 4.3 per cent and 4.7 per cent for the six months ending in March. It kept interest rates steady and stressed a neutral policy stance. The RBI cut rates by 200 basis points from January 2015 until August this year amid falling inflation. Some economists say that the RBI is likely to keep interest rate unchanged till the first half of next year.

Separately released data also showed industrial output growth easing to 2.2 per cent in October from upwardly revised 4.1 per cent year-on-year increase in September, as demand continued to suffer from disruption caused by the rollout of the new goods and services tax (GST).

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4.88%
The retail inflation in November

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