Retail inflation cools to 4.17% in July; pulses, vegetable prices eases

Market woe- house price growth slumps to a five year low

Retail inflation fell to a nine-month low of 4.17 percent in July on account of a slowdown in the prices of vegetables and fruits, said government data released on Monday. The next bi-monthly policy is to be unveiled on October 5.

The CSO data revealed that inflation in vegetables declined by (-) 2.19 percent last month, compared to 7.8 percent in June.

United Kingdom inflation rose to 2.5% in July, after holding steady at 2.4% in the previous three months as the cost of transport and computer games increased.

The rate of price rise in fruits slowed down 6.98 percent, as against over 10 percent in the previous month.

"Today CPI inflation data got released".

Within the index, food category inflation was 1.73% in July, easing from 3.11% in June.

Tej Parikh, senior economist at the Institute of Directors, said the rise in inflation showed the cost of living squeeze was not yet a thing of the past.

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CPIH, the ONS' preferred method of measuring inflation was at 2.3% in July, unchanged from the previous month. "The deteriorating external situation could be a big factor that influences the MPC even as they closely watch the inflation trajectory going forward", he said.

John Hawksworth, chief economist at the consultancy PwC, said the recent fall in the pound would increase the cost of imports, including fuel, and add pressure on prices for businesses and consumers.

It has now risen again, although the ONS suggested this is likely a blip, noting that computer game prices - which helped drive inflation higher - are "highly variable from month to month".

ICRA's Nayar said CPI inflation in Q2 FY19 looks set to lag the MPC's estimate of 4.6 per cent, reducing the likelihood of a rate hike in the October policy review.

"Crude oil prices continue to display a volatile trend, driven by geopolitical risks and concerns regarding supply as well as demand in various parts of the world".

According to Prasanna, with FY19 headline CPI inflation to average 4.7-4.8 per cent and core inflation averaging 5.8 per cent, chances of impending rate hikes, though, have come down, but the hike cycle is not over yet.

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