Wholesale prices fall for seventh consecutive month

The wholesale price inflation (WPI) continued to fall for a seventh consecutive month in May, backed by prices of food, fuel and manufactured goods but price of pulses remained high, demanding that the government put in place a few supply-side measures.

The WPI fell to -2.36 per cent in May, official data showed. Food inflation stood at 3.8 per cent, lower than the previous few months but prices of pulses shot up 22.84 per cent in May from 15.38 per cent in April.

Vegetable inflation too fell at -5.5 per cent, with potato prices easing by about 52 per cent but onions jumped over 20 per cent. Inflation in manufactured goods such as sugar, edible oils and beverages declined by 0.64 per cent, lowest in the past many months.
To tame spiralling prices of pulses, the government has said it is open to importing pulses if the need arises.

Prices of pulses have risen sharply in the last one year as the domestic production fell by nearly two million tonnes in 2014-15, crop year due to unfavourable weather conditions.
India Inc lauded the fall in prices but asked the government to invigorate the supply-side response to tackle any adverse impact of the monsoon.

Assocham said that the continuous downtrend in WPI seen over the past few months is a positive signal towards stabilisation of prices and this should surely help in further boosting economic activity. It said, however, that a constant decline in the figures raises concerns, especially for the manufacturing sector.
DH News Service

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