J&K’s retail inflation dips to 3.4% in October

Srinagar, Nov 13: Jammu and Kashmir witnessed a decline in its retail inflation rate, reaching a favourable 3.4 percent in October, as reported by the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation.

This figure is notably lower than the national inflation rate of 4.87 percent. The lower inflation rate in J&K comes as a relief for the common people grappling with the rising costs of food items and essentials in the region.

Experts view this as a positive development for household budgets, anticipating potential savings due to the decline in retail inflation.

In line with the national trend, India’s retail inflation touched a 5-month low of 4.87 percent in October, providing much-needed relief to consumers, according to data released by the National Statistics Office. Sequentially, the inflation rate is lower than the 5.02 percent recorded in September.

Several factors contributed to this decline. Reductions in fuel prices, including a decrease in LPG prices ahead of key assembly elections in states, played a role. Food inflation, accounting for nearly half of the overall consumer price index (CPI), stood at 6.71 percent in October, a slight increase from 6.56 percent in September.

Notably, edible oils witnessed a significant decline by 13.69 percent, and vegetable prices remained stable, providing relief to consumers. However, concerns persist as pulses saw an 18.79 percent increase, and spices became costlier by 22.76 percent. Cereals, including wheat and rice, recorded a double-digit rise of 10.69 percent during the month.

With consumer price inflation nearing the 4 percent midpoint of the RBI’s 2-6 percent target range, the central bank is expected to maintain interest rates to support economic growth. Despite this positive trend, economists advise caution, citing potential impacts of this year’s erratic monsoon on food prices and geopolitical tensions, such as the Israel-Hamas conflict, which could influence oil markets.

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The decline in inflation aligns with the RBI’s expectations, emphasising the need for continued vigilance amid uncertainties in global markets.

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