WPI Inflation at 8-month High of 1.48 percent in October on Costlier Manufactured Items

The wholesale price-based inflation rose to an eight-month high of 1.48 per cent in October, as manufactured products turned costlier. The WPI inflation was 1.32 per cent in September and zero per cent in October last year.

This is the highest level of Wholesale price index-based (WPI) inflation since February when it was 2.26 per cent. While food article prices softened in October, manufactured items witnessed hardening of prices, according to data released by the Commerce and Industry Ministry on Monday.

Food inflation in October stood at 6.37 per cent, as against 8.17 per cent in the previous month. The rate of price rise in vegetables and potato remained high at 25.23 per cent and 107.70 per cent, respectively, during the month.

Inflation in non-food articles and minerals was higher at 2.85 per cent and 9.11 per cent, respectively. In the manufactured products category, inflation stood at 2.12 per cent in October, compared to 1.61 per cent in September.

Prices in fuel and power basket softened to (-) 10.95 per cent in October. The retail inflation, based on the consumer price index, was 7.61 per cent in October, data released last week showed.

The Reserve Bank in a report on the state of economy last week had also flagged unrelenting pressure of inflation as a downside risk confronting the prospects of economic recovery. ”The foremost is the unrelenting pressure of inflation, with no signs of waning in spite of supply management measures…There is a grave risk of generalisation of price pressures, unanchoring of inflation expectations feeding into a loss of credibility in policy interventions and the eventual corrosion of the nascent growth impulses that are making their appearance,” the RBI said.