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Rise in oil prices may add to inflation woes: India Inc

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

As inflation based on wholesale prices rose to 3.18% in April, India Inc yesterday said the cascading impact of rising crude oil prices would be one of the key worry areas for India's economy going forward.

The Wholesale Price Index (WPI) based inflation stood at 2.47% in March and 3.85% in April last year.

Assocham said the break down of the April inflation data shows annualised inflation of close to 10% for petrol and over 13% for high speed diesel.

“Even more worrying is the fact that these levels are on a very high base in the same month last fiscal. Going forward, increasing crude oil prices and their cascading impact would be one of the key worry areas for Indian economy,” Assocham Secretary General D S Rawat said.

PHD Chamber of Commerce President Anil Khaitan termed the rise in inflation worrisome and hoped that prices do not increase further in the coming months.

According to government data released yesterday, inflation in food articles was at 0.87% in April 2018, as against a deflation of 0.29% in the preceding month.

Deflation in vegetables was 0.89% in April, while in the previous month it was 2.70%. Inflation in 'fuel and power' basket rose sharply to 7.85% in April from 4.70% in March as prices of domestic fuel increased in line with rising global crude oil rates.

Reversing trend, retail inflation inches up to 4.58% in April
Reversing the declining trend, retail inflation moved up to 4.58% in April due to hardening in prices of cereals, meat, fish and fruits. The inflation based on Consumer Price Index (CPI), a key data factored in by the Reserve Bank while deciding interest rate, was 4.28% in March. The inflation was at 2.99% in April last year. As per data released by the Central Statistics Office (CSO), the rate of price rise in the protein rich items inched up in April to 3.59%, as against the previous month of 3.17%.

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