Business

April retail inflation quickens to 4.58%

April retail inflation quickens to 4.58%

Retail and wholesale price inflation surged in April on the back of a spike in global crude prices leading to speculation that the RBI could maintain its key interest rate in its June policy review.

Wholesale inflation had been falling since November, last year.

The index for "Manufacture of Textiles" sub-group too rose by 0.3 per cent to 114.4 from 114.1 for the previous month due to higher price of viscose yarn, weaving and finishing of textiles, cotton yarn and synthetic yarn (1 per cent each). The rise in inflation rate for fruits, cereals, meat and fish, oils and fats, and spices was more than offset by the decline in the inflation print for vegetables, sugar, eggs, and milk and products.

The Wholesale Price Index (WPI) inflation for the month of April 2018 rose to 3.18% compared to 2.47% in March 2018 and 2.48% in February 2018.

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The index for Manufactured Products group rose by 0.3 percent to 116.1 (provisional) from 115.7 (provisional) for the previous month. Inflation in the energy category rose at a four-month high - by 7.85 per cent, from 4.70 per cent in the previous month.

The WPI-based inflation was 2.47 per cent in March and 3.85 per cent in April past year. It increased by 3.11 per cent, from 3.03 per cent in March. RBI mainly takes into account retail inflation data while formulating monetary policy.

"Food prices remained largely flat with some increase in fruit prices and if monsoon plays out as expected, then the upside risks are likely to remain limited". WPI inflation, which was on a declining trend since December 2017, accelerated in April due to an unfavourable base effect, a seasonal uptick in food prices as well as the pass through of rising global crude oil prices.

In addition, India Ratings and Research's Chief Economist Devendra Kumar Pant said: "Higher core-core inflation (non-food, non-fuel and light and non-transport and communication) shot to 34 months high at 6 per cent".


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