Inflation surges to 6.68 per cent

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New Delhi, Mar 30: The headline inflation rate for the week ended March 15 surged to a 59-week high at 6.68 per cent, compared to its previous week's level of 5.92 per cent, on account of higher food and metal prices. The annual inflation rate was 6.56 per cent during the corresponding week of the previous year, an official statement said.

The Finance Minister, during the week, has been reiterating the government's efforts of keeping the inflation rates under control. The wholesale price index for 'All Commodities' for the week ended March 15, rose by 0.8 per cent to 223.6 (Provisional) from 221.8 (Provisional) for the previous week. The index for 'Primary Articles' rose by 0.3 per cent to 230.5 (Provisional) from 229.8 (Provisional) for the previous week. The index for 'Food Articles' group rose by 0.2 per cent to 225.9 (Provisional) from 225.4 (Provisional) for the previous week due to higher prices of fruits and vegetables, masur and barley (one per cent each).

However, the prices of bajra and urad (one per cent each) declined.

The index for 'Non-Food Articles' group rose by 0.6 per cent to 226.3 (Provisional) from 224.9 (Provisional) for the previous week due to higher prices of raw rubber and rape and mustard seed (four per cent each), linseed and raw cotton (three per cent each) and copra, cotton seed and castor seed (two per cent each).

However, the prices of sunflower (four per cent) and groundnut seed (one per cent) declined.

The index for 'Fuel, Power, Light and Lubricants' group rose by one per cent to 341.0 (Provisional) from 337.5 (Provisional) for the previous week due to higher prices of naphtha (seven per cent), furnace oil (two per cent) and electricity and light diesel oil (one per cent each).

However, the prices of bitumen (one per cent each) declined.

The index for 'Manufactured Products' group rose by 0.9 per cent to 195.0 (Provisional) from 193.2 (Provisional) for the previous week. The index for 'Food Products' group rose by 0.5 per cent to 200.2 (Provisional) from 199.2 (Provisional) for the previous week due to higher prices of rape and mustard oil (three per cent), sooji (rawa) and oilcakes (two per cent) and coconut oil, maida, atta, gur, khandsari and gingelly oil (one per cent).

However, the prices of bran (all kinds) (three per cent) and groundnut oil, salt and ghee (one per cent each) declined.

The index for 'Textiles' group declined by 0.1 per cent to 128.1 (Provisional) from 128.2 (Provisional) for the previous week due to lower prices of hessian and sacking bags (two per cent) and hessian cloth (one per cent).

The index for 'Paper and Paper Products' group rose by 0.1 per cent to 195.2 (Provisional) from 195.3 (Provisional) for the previous week due to lower prices of newspaper (one per cent).

The index for 'Chemicals and Chemical Products' group rose by 0.2 per cent to 209.4 (Provisional) from 209.0 (Provisional) for the previous week due to higher prices of soda ash (sodium carbonate) (eight per cent).

The index for 'Basic Metals Alloys and Metal Products' group rose by 4.4 per cent to 279.2 (Provisional) from 267.5 (Provisional) for the previous week due to higher prices of joist and rolls (34 per cent), heavy light structurals (32 per cent), bright bars (22 per cent), angles, channels and sections (19 per cent), basic pig iron and foundary pig iron (17 per cent each), other iron steel (16 per cent), steel sheets, plates and strips (13 per cent), ms bars and rounds (six per cent), bars and rods (four per cent), pipes and tubes (three per cent) and zinc ingots (one per cent).

However, the prices of lead ingots (four per cent) declined.

The index for 'Machinery and Machine Tools' group rose by 0.1 per cent to 168.2 (Provisional) from 168.1 (Provisional) for the previous week due to higher prices of powerlooms automatic (eight per cent) and other pumps (one per cent).

However, the prices of textile machinery parts (one per cent) declined.

UNI

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