March inflation likely slowed marginally: Reuters Poll

BANGALORE Thu Apr 12, 2012 8:22am IST

A vendor waits for customers at his fruit stall at a market in Kolkata December 8, 2011. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri/Files

A vendor waits for customers at his fruit stall at a market in Kolkata December 8, 2011.

Credit: Reuters/Rupak De Chowdhuri/Files

Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, daughter of Congress party chief Sonia Gandhi, adjusts her flower garlands as she campaigns for her mother during an election meeting at Rae Bareli in Uttar Pradesh April 22, 2014. REUTERS/Pawan Kumar

Election 2014

More than 814 million people — a number larger than the population of Europe — are eligible to vote in the world’s biggest democratic exercise.  Full Coverage 

BANGALORE (Reuters) - India's wholesale price inflation rate likely slowed marginally in March as easing price pressures from non-food items offset persistently high food and fuel costs, a Reuters poll showed.

The median consensus from a survey of 30 economists pinned expectations for headline inflation at 6.70 percent for March from a year ago, under the higher-than-expected 6.95 percent recorded in February.

After staying above the 9 percent mark for a year, inflation started cooling last November and hit a 26-month low of 6.55 percent in January, stoking market expectations of a rate cut by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).

But with global oil prices soaring and Brent oil futures hovering stubbornly near the $120 mark, the risk of climbing inflation has again appeared.

India is heavily dependent on crude oil imports to meet its fuel requirements and, as global oil prices rise, higher transportation costs push up the price of goods.

"It is still suppressed inflation in India (because) the complete global crude oil impact has not been passed to the end consumer," said Arun Singh, at Dun & Bradstreet, who expects inflation to remain elevated for at least another month or two.

An increase to the service tax by the government in its March federal budget may also add to inflationary pressures in the coming months by pushing up production and input costs.

Forecasts in the Reuters survey for March ranged from 6.30 to 7.02 percent, suggesting that, while inflation is not about to go off the central bank's radar, it will remain well below the 9 percent levels.

The RBI is likely to cut its key interest rate for the first time in three years when it meets on April 17, reducing it by 25 basis points to 8.25 percent, a Reuters poll showed on Tuesday.

However, some economists don't see that happening.

"I don't think the RBI will think of cutting interest rates at this point in time. The RBI is purely targeting inflation as of now and inflation, unfortunately, has not shown any tendency of moderation," Singh said.

(Reporting by Deepti Govind; Editing by Jonathan Cable and Paul Tait)

FILED UNDER:
We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/
Comments (1)
SilverTrader wrote:
We are having credibility issues with inflation reports from banks. Please provide multiple sources so investors can evaluate the sources. Offical inflation in the US is estimated to be a fraction of what many independent sources can prove.
Banks appear to have an interest in keeping numbers low to encourage the issuance of more debt. It is very uncomfortable to trust these sources.

Apr 15, 2012 9:57pm IST  --  Report as abuse
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Oil Imports

Oil Imports

India to make May-July oil payments to Iran - sources.  Full Article 

DLF Shares

DLF Shares

DLF slides 3 percent, underperforms rivals.  Full Article 

Global Economy

Global Economy

Chinese factories stalling as euro zone business picks up  Full Article 

Rupee Falls

Rupee Falls

Rupee falls for third day; foreign fund inflows key.  Full Article 

Record High

Record High

BSE Sensex hits record high for third straight day.  Full Article 

M&M Upgraded

M&M Upgraded

Credit Suisse upgrades Mahindra & Mahindra to 'outperform'  Full Article 

Breakingviews

Breakingviews

Manchester United’s crisis has silver lining  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage