India's annual inflation rate, based on all India general Consumer Price Index, or CPI, as per base year 2010, for January 2013 came in at 10.79 percent, higher than the preceding month's 10.56 percent as per the nation-wide retail inflation data released by the Ministry of Statistics & Program Implementation on Tuesday, led by increase in prices of food items, such as vegetables, oil and fats, cereals, egg, fish and meat and as well as clothing and fuel and light.
A higher-than-expected CPI in January may constrain the RBI from looking at another policy rate cut in its upcoming March monetary policy review.
As per data, the corresponding inflation rate for rural was 10.88 percent, while that of urban was 10.73 percent. The overall data combine both urban and rural numbers.
The index on base year 2010=100 for all-India and States/Union Territories separately for rural, urban and combined every month from January 2012 was introduced by the Ministry of Statistics.
Vegetables were costlier by 26.11 percent on a nationwide basis in January over the same month last year, while oil and fats became dearer by 14.98 percent, cereals and products by 14.90 percent, egg, fish and meat by 13.73 percent, and sugar by 12.95 percent in the month.
In rural and urban areas, inflation in the food and beverages category stood at 13.13 and 13.81 percent, respectively.
Clothing, bedding, footwear became 11.00 percent more expensive on an annual basis, while fuel and light went up by 8.51 percent in January.
The all India CPI will be in addition to the three retail price indices -- for agricultural laborers, rural laborers and industrial workers -- prepared by the Ministry of Labor.
The CPI, introduced a year ago, will exist alongside the prevailing WPI, followed in India to gauge inflation. Headline Inflation as measured by the WPI stood at 7.18 percent in December 2012.
The CPI data tracks retail prices in five major food groups -fuel and light, housing, clothing and miscellaneous - across rural and urban India, providing a comprehensive reference point for the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to take effective monetary policy measures to deal with inflation.
by RTT Staff Writer
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