Inflation to fall below target?

Retail inflation at 19-month low in January industrial output up 2.4% in December

The biggest monthly fall for gas prices since the 1980s helped drag down United Kingdom inflation to the lowest level in two years in January as the government's energy price cap came into effect. They expect the Office for National Statistics to announce at 9.30am that the headline CPI rate slipped to 1.9 per cent, largely thanks to easing energy inflation.

Industrial production jumped to 2.4 per cent in December, 2018 from 0.5 per cent in November, 2018 driven mainly by a sharp spike in manufacturing index which rose to 2.7 per cent vs -0.4 per cent month-on-month.

Inflation was pulled lower by a decline in electricity, gas and other fuel prices between December and January, which was partially offset by lower air fares.

At the pumps, motorists had lower fuel costs last month, with petrol down by 2.1p per litre on the month to 119.6p. In its February 7 policy statement, it projected consumer inflation at 3.2-3.4 per cent in the first half of next financial year, beginning April 1.

Consumer inflation had stood at 1.46 per cent in June 2017.

Mumbai: India's headline and core inflation rates are set to converge in the coming months as the economy slows, increasing the chance of more interest rate cuts. This, combined with a negative base effect, may lead to a four-tick decline of the year-on-year rate to 1.5%.

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Prices of vegetables stood at (-) 13.3 percent versus (-) 16.14 percent a month ago while pulses contracted (-) 5.5 percent in January from (-) 7.13 percent a month ago.

Analysts polled by Reuters had forecast January's annual increase in the consumer price index at 2.48 percent.

At 2.05 per cent, the overall retail inflation rate is much lower than the Reserve Bank of India's (RBI's) inflation projection of 2.8 per cent for January-March quarter. B Prasanna, head, Global Markets Group, ICICI Bank said, "The CPI number surprised positively and core inflation also moved lower".

Consumer durables output grew by 2.9 per cent as against a growth of 2.1 per cent in December 2017.

"US CPI for January is due out this afternoon".

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