At 2.43 percent, India’s rate of inflation lowest since June 2002 (Lead)

March 12th, 2009 - 4:35 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, March 12 (IANS) India’s annual rate of inflation fell further to 2.43 percent for the week ended Feb 28 from 3.03 the week before, official data showed Thursday.
The inflation figure was the lowest since June 2002.

The official wholesale price index, however, rose by 0.04 percent during the week.

While the index for primary articles rose by 0.2 percent, that for manufactured products fell marginally by 0.1 percent. The index for fuels remained unchanged for the second consecutive week.

D.K. Joshi, principal economist at credit rating agency Crisil Ltd, said as the base effect was strong the inflation should fall further and could even reach zero.

Dalip Kumar, the head of projects at the National Council of Applied Economics Research (NCAER), a Delhi-based think tank, said the inflation rate has come down due to the low prices of non-food commodities and manufactured products.

“Going by the inflation data, it seems we could go beyond zero. But I still have some reservations at the present rate of inflation as the food commodities continue to remain at the higher side,” said Kumar.

The statistics, released by the industry ministry, also showed that the inflation rate, based on revised estimates, was 5.33 percent for the week ended Jan 3 this year, against 5.24 percent reported earlier on the basis of provisional estimates.

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