Lower fuel prices bring down India’s wholesale inflation further

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New Delhi, March 16 (IANS) India’s annual rate of inflation, based on wholesale prices, declined further to (-)2.06 percent for February from (-)0.39 percent for the month before thanks to a 14.72 percent drop in the index for petroleum fuels and power, official data showed Monday.

Among the other two major indices, the index for primary articles rose marginally 1.43 percent and that for manufactured products was up 0.33 percent, as per data on the official wholesale price index (WPI) released by the Commerce and Industry Ministry.

The country’s retail inflation, based on the consumer price index, also showed a decline of 5.37 percent in February against 7.88 percent in the like month of last year. But on month-on-month basis, the retail inflation was higher over the figure of 5.19 percent for January 2015.

The prices of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) fell by 8.86 percent, petrol became cheaper by 21.35 percent and diesel prices came down by 16.62 percent. The food inflation in the month under review grew by 7.74 percent from a rise of 8.00 percent recorded in January 2015.

Prices of major food articles like wheat, rice, cereals, vegetables, potatoes, fruit and milk fell in the month under review.

According to the data, wheat prices decelerated by 2.40 percent from a negative growth of 1.63 percent in January 2015. Rice prices grew by 3.80 percent from 4.00 percent in January 2015.

Cereals were costlier by 1.39 percent in February 2015 from 1.65 percent in January 2015. Vegetables were dearer by 15.54 percent from a growth of 19.74 percent in January this year.

Prices of potatoes contracted by 3.56 percent from a rise of 2.11 percent on a month-on-month basis. Milk prices accelerated by 7.3 percent from a rise of 9.3 percent in January 2015.

However, onions prices rocketed by 26.58 percent in February from a decline of 1.90 percent month-on-month basis. Egg, fish and meat inflation grew by 1.27 percent from a fall of 1.51 percent in January 2015.

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