New Delhi, Jun 15: Easing prices of fuel, food items and manufactured goods kept inflation in the negative zone for the seventh consecutive month in May, although prices fell at a slower rate of (-)2.36 per cent as against the previous month. The Wholesale Price Index (WPI) based inflation was (-)2.65 per cent in April. It has been in the negative zone since November 2014.
Inflation in May last year was 6.18 per cent. The lower inflation comes amid a forecast of deficient monsoon this year. As per the government data released today, vegetable inflation was (-)5.5 per cent, with potato recording a dip of about 52 per cent. Protein rich items like egg, meat and fish too were cheaper in May as compared to the previous month and so were milk, fruits, rice and cereals. Overall food inflation was 3.8 per cent, much lower than the previous few months.
Similarly, the May inflation in manufactured items (food products, sugar, edible oils, beverages, etc) declined by 0.64 per cent, lowest in past many months.
Inflation in fuel and power basket was at (-)10.51 per cent on annual basis, though slightly up from April. Retail inflation in May, as measured on Consumer Price Index (CPI), was 5.01 per cent, marginally up from the previous month. Reserve Bank has cut the key interest rate (repo rate) by 0.75 per cent in 2015, and the government has asked banks to reduce their lending rates.