India’s Wholesale Price Index rises to 4-month high at 3.18 per cent in April, 2018

India’s wholesale price inflation (WPI) rose to a four-month high of 3.18 per cent in April on increasing prices of petrol and diesel as well as fruits and vegetables. Wholesale Price Index (WPI)-based inflation stood at 2.47 per cent in March and 3.85 per cent in April last year.

WPI inflation, which was on a declining trend since December 2017, accelerated in April this year due to an unfavourable base effect, seasonal uptick in food prices as well as the pass through of rising global crude oil prices. In December last year, it stood at 3.58 per cent.

According to government data, inflation in food articles was at 0.87 per cent in April 2018, against a deflation of 0.29 per cent in the preceding month.

Deflation in vegetables stood at 0.89 per cent in April, while in the previous month it was 2.70 per cent. Inflation in fruits was in double-digit at 19.47 per cent in April, up from 9.26 per cent in March.

Inflation in ‘fuel and power’ basket rose sharply to 7.85 per cent in April from 4.70 per cent in March as the prices of domestic fuel increased in line with rising global Crude Oil rates.

In the ‘fuel and power’ basket, petrol inflation spiked to 9.45 per cent in April from 2.55 per cent in March; while diesel jumped to 13.01 per cent from 6.12 per cent in the previous month.

A global rally in crude prices pushed up domestic fuel prices, with petrol at Rs 74.80 per litre and diesel at a record high of Rs 66.14 a litre.

The WPI inflation for February was revised upwards to 2.74 per cent from the provisional estimate of 2.48 per cent.

Shekhar Ghosh is consulting editor, Indoasiancommodities.com. He has edited and written for publications like Business India, Business Standard, Business Today, Outlook and many other international publications. He can be reached at shekhar.ghosh@indoasiancommodities.in.

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