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Retail inflation hits 7-month high of 3.58% in October

India's retail inflation accelerated to seven-month high of 3.58% in the month of October 2017, as compared to 3.28% in September 2017, but lower than 4.20% in October 2016. Consumer inflation rise was mainly due to an increase in prices of consumer food items. However, the rate still remains below the Reserve Bank of India's medium-term target of 4%, with a tolerance band of 2%-6%. The inflation data showed that the Consumer Food Price Index (CFPI) - an indicator for food prices - also rose to 1.90% in October from 1.25% in September.

As per the data of the Central Statistics Office (CSO), Ministry of Statistics and Programme, the Consumer Price Index (CPI) (Rural, Urban, Combined) on Base 2012=100 for October 2017, stood at 3.36%, 3.81% and 3.58% respectively, compared to at 4.78%, 3.54% and 4.20% respectively in October 2016. The data also showed that Consumer Food Price Index (CFPI) for all India Rural and Urban for October 2017 stood at 1.75% and 2.13%, respectively, compared to 3.86% and 2.33%, respectively in October 2016. The index value of CFPI for combined stood at 139.4 for the month of October.

Within the food segment, vegetable inflation quickened rapidly to 7.47% in October, from 3.92% in September. Inflation in the milk and products category quickened to 4.30% in October from 3.87% in the previous month. The food and beverages saw a growth of 2.26% in October, the fastest pace since March, and up from 1.76% in September. Besides, Pulses and products inflation witnessed a negative growth of (-) 23.13%, as compared with (-) 22.51% in September. Furthermore, the rate of growth of prices in the clothing and footwear category speeded up a tad to 4.76% in October, from 4.63% in September. Inflation in the housing sector accelerated to 6.68%, from 6.10% in the preceding month. Inflation in the fuel and light segment came in at 6.36%, up from 5.56% in September.

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