India's retail inflation eases to 4.44 percent in February

Inflation in vegetables was 17.57% last month down from 26.97% in January and for fruits it was 4.80

Inflation in vegetables was 17.57% last month down from 26.97% in January and for fruits it was 4.80

"The General Index for the month of January 2018 stands at 132.3, which is 7.5 per cent higher as compared to the level in the month of January 2017", a Central Statistics Office (CSO) release said here.

In January, retail inflation had declined to 5.07% while the inflation based on wholesale prices had eased to a six-month low of 2.84%.

India's February core annual consumer price inflation was in the range of between 5.04 and 5.16 percent, according to estimates of two analysts.

In line with the recent trend of recovery in manufacturing, the sector, which constitutes 77.63 per cent of the index, grew by 8.7 per cent during January, as compared to 2.5 per cent in the same month past year.

But, on a cumulative basis, the IIP expanded by 4.1 per cent between April and January 2017-18, which was lower than the 5 per cent growth in the same period a year ago.

The retail inflation, however, fell to four-month low of 4.44 per cent in the month of February as compared to 5.07 per cent in January.

In January, apparel played a major role in boosting inflation, with the biggest rise in prices in about 28 years. Food price inflation was at 4.7% in January.

The CPI inflation for rural areas was 4.37% in February while for urban areas it was 4.52%.

Besides, industry bodies yet again nudged the RBI to lower interest rate as retail inflation fell to a 4-month low of 4.44 percent in February.

During January, 16 out of 23 industry groups in the manufacturing sector showed positive growth.

It was 4.88 per cent in November previous year.

The industry group "Manufacture of other transport equipment" has shown the highest positive growth of 33.1 percent followed by 27.8 percent in "Manufacture of furniture" and 26.6 percent in "Manufacture of motor vehicles, trailers and semi-trailers".

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