WPI snippets

Wholesale prices fell for the 15 consecutive months in January on the back of sliding global crude oil prices but prices of some food items such as pulses stayed firm, pointing to the need for authorities to keep a close watch. The WPI data comes days after retail inflation in January rose to a 17-month high of 5.7%, rising from 5.6% in December on the back of rising food prices. The retail inflation data has a higher weightage of food and services, while the WPI accounts for a greater presence of commodities.
The annual rate of inflation, based on the wholesale price index (WPI), stood at minus 0.9% in January compared to minus 0.73% for the previous month. The government revised the data for November to minus 2.04% compared to minus 1.99%, which was previously reported.
Economists said the divergence in WPI and CPI can pose some policy challenges for the authorities.
The fuel and power index contracted 9.2% year-on-year in January on the back of tumbling crude prices and the pace of food price increases moderated, rising 6% in January compared to an increase of 8.2% in the previous month.Prices of pulses remained firm, which rose 45% in January , while vegetable prices shot up 12.5%. The retail inflation data has also shown an increase in food prices, highlighting the need to keep a close watch on supplies.

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