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Inflation remains negative for 16th consecutive month in February

WPI inflation remained in the negative zone for a 16th straight month at (-)0.91 percent in February as food articles, mainly vegetables and pulses turned cheaper.

Inflation remains-AV

The Wholesale Price Index-based inflation was (-)0.9 percent in January. In February last year, it was (-)2.17 percent.

This is the 16th straight month since November 2014 when deflationary pressure has persisted.

Food inflation stood at 3.35 percent in February compared with 6.02 percent in January, showed official data, which was released on Monday.

Inflation in pulses and onion eased to 38.84 percent and (-)13.22 percent, respectively. The rate of price rise in the case of vegetables was (-)3.34 percent, and for fruits, it stood at (-)1.95 percent.

Price rise in potato was (-)6.28 percent while that of egg, meat and fish came in at 3.47 percent.

The inflation print in the fuel and power segment was (-)6.40 percent and for manufactured products, it read (-)0.58 percent in February.

The December WPI inflation has been revised to (-)1.06 percent from the provisional estimate of (-)0.73 percent.

Reserve Bank mainly looks at retail inflation data, which is expected later in the day while firming up monetary policy stance.
It also takes into account industrial production numbers, which as per latest reading fell for a third straight month, contracting 1.5 percent in January due to poor showing of manufacturing.

Industry has raised its pitch for a rate cut as factory output numbers continue to disappoint and the government stuck to the fiscal consolidation path in the Budget 2016-17, giving more elbowroom to the apex bank to ease monetary policy at the first bimonthly policy review for the next fiscal on April 5.

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