India’s inflation rate marginally up at 0.57 percent (Lead)

April 30th, 2009 - 4:19 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, April 30 (IANS) India’s annual rate of inflation inched up to 0.57 percent for the week ended April 18 from 0.26 percent the week before, official data showed Thursday.
Among the three main commodity groups, the indices for manufactured products and primary articles rose 0.3 percent and 1.7 percent, respectively.

The index for fuel, power, light and lubricants rose 0.1 percent to 323 (provisional) from 322.6 (provisional) for the previous week due to higher prices of aviation turbine fuel (8 percent) and furnace oil (2 percent).

The inflation rate based on official wholesale price index had declined for eight consecutive weeks to 0.27 percent for the week ended March 14, but marginally rose to 0.31 percent for the week ended March 21.

It then declined for two consecutive weeks, before rising again to 0.26 percent and 0.57 percent for the week ended April 11 and April 18.

Between April 11 and April 18, the wholesale price index rose 0.6 percent to 230.2 from 228.8 the week before, as per the provisional data released by the commerce and industry ministry.

Dalip Kumar, head of projects at the National Council of Applied Economic Research (NCAER), a Delhi-based think tank, said the consumption growth would pick up further and bring the economic growth back on track.

But he also cautioned about rising prices of food commodities and vegetables. “The rate of inflation does not match with the exorbitant price of food commodities and vegetables,” he said.

Sriram Khanna, the commerce department head at Delhi School of Economics, said the rate of inflation would continue to grow and go beyond five percent, but would stabilise at 4 percent by the end of this fiscal.

“Despite rising prices of commodities, the consumption growth will pick up by the second quarter of this fiscal,” he said.

The central bank April 21 announced a 25 basis points cut in key rates and said the economy would grow by six percent this fiscal, while inflation would rise to around four percent.

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