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Inflation rises to 17-month high of 6.95% in March

Costlier food items has pushed the retail inflation to a 17-month high of 6.95% in March, much above the upper tolerance level of the Reserve Bank, according to a government data released on Tuesday.

This is the third consecutive month that the Consumer Price Index (CPI)-based inflation remained above the 6% mark. The previous high of 7.61% was recorded in October 2020. The inflation in the food basket shot up to 7.68% in March 2022, from 5.85% in the preceding month.

T  RBI’s tolerance limit of retail inflation is 4% with a 2% margin on either side. On a quarterly basis, the retail inflation during January-March works out to be 6.34%.

The RBI has forecast average CPI inflation at 6.3% in April-June and 5.8% in July-September. But the prognosis is based on crude oil and other commodity prices declining to levels prevailing before the Russia-Ukraine conflict broke out.

In another set of data, the government said the Index of Industrial Production (IIP) grew by 1.7% in February.

Food inflation shoots up to 7.68%

  • Inflation in the food basket shot up to 7.68% from 5.85% in February
  • The RBI’s tolerance limit of retail inflation is 4% with a 2% margin on either side
  • On a quarterly basis, the retail inflation during January-March works out to be 6.34%

Factory output up 1.7% in February

  • Factory output rose 1.7% in February on account of rise in the mining sector and power generation
  • The manufacturing sector recorded a growth of 0.8%
  • The Index of Industrial Production (IIP) had declined 3.2% in February 2021

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