India's wholesale price inflation eases to 3.8% in December

Inflation

Inflation

The Ministry of Commerce and Industry revised the wholesale inflation data for October 2018 to 5.54 percent from 5.28 percent.

In December 2017, WPI inflation stood at 3.58 per cent.

Retail inflation fell to 2.19 percent in December compared with 2.3 percent in November, government data released on Monday showed.

Inflation in the "fuel and power" basket in December slumped to 8.38 per cent, almost half of 16.28 per cent in November. Fuel and light inflation was 4.54 per cent in December, down from 7.39 per cent in November on back of reduction in prices of petrol and diesel.

Individually, in petrol and diesel inflation was 1.57% and 8.61%, respectively, and for liquified petroleum gas (LPG) it was 6.87% during December. This means that Indians are paying less for vegetables, pulses, sugar or eggs even as there was a marginal increase in prices of meat, fish and pulses. It pegged H1 FY20 (April-September) inflation at 3.8-4.2 percent.

Onion witnessed deflation of 63.83 per cent in December, compared to 47.60 per cent in November. WPI inflation in primary articles also rose to 2.28 percent versus 0.88 percent in the previous month. Forty one economists had expected consumer inflation at 2.20 per cent in December, according to a January 3-9 poll by news agency Reuters.

Consumer inflation was at 2.19 per cent in December, the government said on Monday.

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) mainly takes into account retail inflation data while formulating monetary policy. The easing price pressures, together with moderating growth, may prompt a rethink on interest rates when the Monetary Policy Committee meets next month.

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