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New Delhi, Jan. 27

THE annual wholesale price index-based inflation rose 4.4 per cent during the week ended January 14, higher than the previous week's annual rise of 4.24 per cent. The increase in the year-on-year inflation rate was largely on account of a rise in prices of manufactured products, according to data released here today by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.

The WPI-based inflation rate was 5.48 per cent during the corresponding week of last year.

On a disaggregated basis, the Primary articles group index declined 0.2 per cent to 194.4 points during the latest reported week. The Fuel, Power, Light and Lubricants' group index fell 0.1 per cent to 311 points. The Manufactured Products' group index rose 0.1 per cent to 172.4 points.

Among the Primary Articles' Group, the index for food articles group declined 0.2 per cent to 196.2 points. Prices of arhar declined by 4 per cent, fish-marine by 2 per cent and food and vegetables, barley and tea by one per cent each. However, the prices of eggs, wheat and moong moved up by one per cent each. In case of the Fuel, Power Light and Lubricants group, the aviation turbine fuel registered a fall in prices by 5 per cent.

Among the Manufactured Products' group, the index for food products group rose 0.2 per cent to 178.1 points due to higher prices of sugar, groundnut oil and gingelly oil (1 per cent each). The Textiles' group index was up 0.1 per cent to 129.6 points from 129.5 for the previous week due to higher prices of hessian cloth and hessian sacking bags (1 per cent each).

The index for Chemicals and Chemical Products moved up 0.1 per cent to 189.1 points from 188.9, while that of non- metallic mineral products group rose 0.5 per cent to 170.6 points from 169.7 for the preceding week due to higher prices of cement (1 per cent).

The Base Metal Alloys and Metal Products' group index rose 0.2 per cent to 221.7 points, from 221.2 during the previous week, while machinery and machine tools group index declined by 0.1 per cent to 146.4 points from 146.5 for the previous week.

Prices of zinc ingots were up 24 per cent while lead ingots soared by 16 per cent. However, prices of air-conditioners declined by 19 per cent while those of bottles and hydrogenated vanaspati fell by 3 per cent each.

The inflation rate has been revised to 4.27 per cent for the week ended November 11, 2005 against the provisional estimate of 4.32 per cent. The WPI has been revised to 198 points against the provisional 198.1 points.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated January 28, 2006)
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