Retail inflation edges up to 5.01% in May

  • PTI, New Delhi
  • Updated: Jun 12, 2015 23:39 IST

Retail inflation edged up to 5.01% in May on costlier pulses even as prices of fruits and vegetables eased during the month.

The Consumer Price Index-based inflation was at 4.87% in April 2015. The retail inflation was 8.33% in May 2014.

Prices of pulses rose by 16.62% in May 2015 over the same month last year, according to the data released by the ministry of statistics & programme implementation on Friday.

Domestic pulses production fell by nearly two million tonnes in 2014-15 crop year due to unfavourable weather conditions such as untimely rains.

India’s factory output, however, grew at a two-month high of 4.1% in April, driven by a robust manufacturing sector growth, rekindling hopes of a sustained revival in the broader economy.

The Reserve Bank, which tracks retail inflation as a benchmark for its monetary policy, said earlier this month that price rise was still a worry for the central bank. RBI expects inflation to rise to 6% by January 2016.

The overall food inflation fell to 4.8% during the month, from 5.11% in April 2015. The food inflation was at 8.89% in May 2014.

The inflation for fruit and vegetables was 3.84% and 4.64%, respectively, in May 2015.

Among others, milk and its products were costlier by 7.43% in May 2015 over the same month last year.

Prices of protein-rich items such as 'meat and fish' rose by 5.43%, while spices turned costlier by 8.82% in the month.

Prices of prepared snacks and meals rose by 7.89%, clothing and footwear category by 6.12%, housing by 4.64% and fuel and light by 5.96%.

Of the other categories, oils and fats prices rose by 1.95%, cereals and products by 1.98%, while that of egg declined by 0.78% in May 2015.

Commenting on the May inflation data, ratings agency ICRA said, "The marginal uptick in CPI inflation for May 2015 is in line with our expectations, given the considerable upward revision in fuel prices during that month.

"Following the rate cut in the June 2015 RBI policy review, we expect an extended pause until the extent of the monsoon shortfall and its impact on food inflation become clear."

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