Retail inflation falls Feb, industrial output increases in Jan

Manufacturing capital consumer goods push IIP growth to 7.5% retail inflation falls to 4.4

"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.

Moreover, this was the biggest growth since February 2011.

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. In terms of actual outcomes, headline inflation averaged 4.6% in Q3, driven primarily by an unusual pick-up in food prices in November. The consumer durables sector saw growth accelerating sharply to 8% from 0.86% over the same period.

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RBI had left policy rates unchanged fearing a rise in inflation and had projected Q4FY2018 inflation at 5.1%, including the impact of HRA, considering the rise in fuel prices in January 2018, and less-than-usual moderation in seasonal food prices.

India's factory production grew in January to 7.5 per cent over the same month previous year, and marginally over the 7.1 per cent recorded in December 2017, official data showed on Monday.

The data come soon after the second advance estimate of GDP, which revised upwards the growth prospects for the fiscal to 6.6 per cent from the previous projection of 6.5 per cent.

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Milk and its products too were less expensive with inflation print of 4.21 per cent, cereals and products at 2.10 per cent, meat & fish at 3.31 per cent while for eggs the prices grew at a slower pace of 8.51 per cent.

The IIP growth in January this year was mainly on account of up-tick in manufacturing sector which constitutes 77.63 percent of the index. The decline was supported by a sharp moderation in vegetable inflation to 17% in February 2018 against 27% in January 2018 and a continuous dip in pulses and products inflation. "Domestic pump prices of petrol and diesel rose sharply in January, reflecting lagged pass-through of the past increases in global crude oil prices".

The inflation for clothing and footwear increased to 5.00%, while the CPI inflation of fuel and light eased to 6.80% in February 2018.

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Though it will give comfort to the Centre that had been under pressure after demonetisation, implementation of Goods and Services Tax and the Punjab National Bank scam, experts expect the Reserve Bank of India to maintain a status quo on rates.

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