Special Correspondent

NEW DELHI: The rate of inflation dipped further to 8.90 per cent for the week ended November 8 from 8.98 per cent in the previous week, thanks mainly to the slide in prices of non-administered petroleum products, metals and certain other manufactured goods.

Despite the fall in the wholesale price index-based inflation rate for the second week in a row to its lowest level in five months, the common man is apparently not deriving much benefit from the cooling of the price spiral as essential items such as fruits and vegetables and other daily necessities turned more expensive.

This is evident from the Finance Ministry’s analysis of the WPI data which revealed that although 14 out of 98 items in the ‘primary articles’ group showed a decline in prices and another 55 items remained unchanged, the annual point-to-point inflation increased to 11.66 per cent from 11.01 per cent in the previous week.

On the contrary, while the inflation rate of 30 essential commodities declined marginally to 7.60 per cent during the week from 7.74 per cent, there was however, an increase in the prices of primary essential commodities, including pulses such as urad, moong, gram, arhar, masoor, and cereals such as wheat, rice, and bajra. There was also an increase in the prices of onions, the statement said.

On the flip side, however, the declining trend in WPI inflation is expected to pave the way for another round of rate cuts by the Reserve Bank of India to inject additional credit at affordable interest rates so as to help fight the economic slowdown.

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