Retail inflation rises to 10.03% in August; vegetable prices soar 21%

Retail inflation rises to 10.03% in August; vegetable prices soar 21% New Delhi: Soaring vegetable prices pushed up the retail inflation to double digits at 10.03 percent in August, up from 9.86 percent in the previous month.

According to the Consumer Price Index (CPI) data released on Tuesday, the highest rise in prices was for vegetables which recorded an increase of 20.79 percent during the month.

In the urban areas, the CPI rose to 10.19 percent during the month as compared to 10.10 percent in July. The retail price rise in rural areas worked out to be 9.90 percent during August up from 9.76 percent in the previous month.

The CPI for August, however, did not capture the impact of hike in diesel price announced by the government on September 13 to help the Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) to reduce their under recoveries.

The CPI for food and beverages section during August increased by 12.03 percent, clothing, bedding and footwear by 10.71 percent and fuel and light by 7.55 percent.

Among the individual segments, steep rise in retail price was noticed in case of oil and fats (18.41 percent), followed by sugar (17.51 percent) and pulses and products (16.04 percent).

The Reserve Bank in its mid-quarter monetary policy yesterday had raised concerns about the price situation saying "as inflationary tendencies have persisted, the primary focus on monetary policy remains the containment of inflation and anchoring of inflation expectations."

The central bank had refrained from reducing the key pending rates despite persistent pressure from industry to cut them to promote sagging economic growth.

PTI