Retail inflation eases to 4.4% in February; IIP grows 7.5% in January

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Industrial production grew at a high rate of 7.5 percent in January 2018 against 3.5 percent in the year-ago month on the back of good show by manufacturing coupled with higher offtake of consumer and capital goods.

India's industrial production rose by 7.5% in January 2018 compared to that in January 2017, data released by the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation showed.

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

In January, retail inflation had declined to 5.07% while the inflation based on wholesale prices had eased to a six-month low of 2.84%.

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

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Inflation softened last month mainly on account of cheaper food prices and lower cost for fuel.

However, the cumulative IIP growth for April 2017-January 2018 stood at 4.1% compared to 5.0% in the corresponding period of the previous year. However, growth in the mining sector was muted in January 2018.

On the other hand, the industry group "Manufacture of tobacco products" has shown the highest negative growth of (-) 46.5 percent followed by (-) 32.4 percent in "Other manufacturing" and (-) 13.2 percent in "Printing and reproduction of recorded media".

The mining sector, however, registered negligible growth of 0.1 per cent, as compared to 8.6 per cent rise in January a year ago.

Last month, the RBI's Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) estimated inflation at 5.1 per cent in the quarter ended March, including the impact of house rent allowance. Though a positive industrial growth and recent PMI numbers indicate an economic recovery, a major chunk of the economy, which is the informal sector that employs significant population of the country, is still coping with the effects of the structural reforms.

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