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Inflation falls to 5.43%

New Delhi, July 14: Falling prices of some essential food items, including vegetables, pulled down inflation both at the retail and wholesale levels in June, although the bleak monsoon situation remains a cause for concern.

Retail inflation in June touched its lowest mark at 7.31 per cent since January 2012, while the wholesale price-based index slid to a four-month low of 5.43 per cent.

“Against the backdrop of deficient monsoon, the decline in CPI (consumer price index) from 8.28 per cent in May to 7.31 per cent in June is encouraging,” said PHD Chamber president Sharad Jaipuria.

According to wholesale price index (WPI) data, inflation eased mainly on account of a fall in vegetable, fuel, edible oil, sugar and onion prices. However, kitchen staple potato went up 45.52 per cent.

Prices of vegetables during the month declined 5.89 per cent from May, edible oils 0.75 per cent and sugar 2.09 per cent. Onion prices were down 10.7 per cent.

In the past few months, the prices of onion and potato had been going up. The government has taken various steps, including imposing a minimum export price of $500 a tonne on onion and $450 a tonne on potatoes, to improve domestic supply.

It has also put a stock-holding limit on these items and decided to release 50 lakh tonnes of rice in the open market.

Retail inflation, based on the movement of CPI, fell to a 30-month low of 7.31 per cent in June, on account of lower prices of food items, including vegetables, cereals and meat.

Retail inflation was 8.28 per cent in May. It was at its lowest at 7.65 per cent in January 2012, the month the government started releasing the data in percentage terms.

According to government’s CPI data, food inflation fell to 7.97 per cent in June from 9.56 per cent in May. The rate of price rise in vegetables was 8.73 per cent against 15.27 per cent in May.

 
 
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