India's industrial output jumps 8% in October, inflation eases to 2.3%


Lower food prices eased India's November retail inflation rate to 2.33 per cent from 3.38 per cent in the previous month, while higher manufacturing boosted industrial output growth in October to 8.1 per cent, an official data showed on Wednesday, even as India Inc. welcomed the double bonanza for the economy.

On a year-on-year (YoY) basis, the Consumer Price Index (CPI), or retail inflation, fall was even sharper as compared to 4.88 per cent registered in November 2017.

Central Statistics Office (CSO) showed that the Consumer Food Price Index (CFPI) deflated further to (-) 2.61 per cent in November from (-) 0.86 per cent in October 2018.

Product-wise, prices of milk-based products, meat and fish rose during the month under review on a YoY basis.

In contrast, deflation in the cost of eggs, vegetables, pulses and sugar helped lower the overall food price index.

On a sub-category basis, vegetable prices reduced on YoY basis in November by (-) 15.59 per cent.

"Pulses and products" became cheaper by (-) 9.22 per cent and that of "sugar and confectionery" by (-) 9.02 per cent.

Food and beverages during the month under consideration recorded a fall of (-) 1.69 per cent over the same period last year.

Among non-food categories, the "fuel and light" segment's inflation rate accelerated to 7.39 per cent in November.

Higher production in the manufacturing sector, especially of capital goods and consumer durables, accelerated India's industrial output growth to 8.1 per cent in October from a rise of 4.46 per cent in September and 1.8 per cent during the corresponding period of the previous fiscal.

"The cumulative growth for the period April-October 2018 over the corresponding period of the previous year stands at 5.6 per cent," the 'Quick Estimates' of IIP released by the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation showed.

On a YoY (year-on-year) basis, the manufacturing sector's output expanded at 7.9 per cent, while mining production edged-up by 7 per cent and the sub-index of electricity generation increased by 10.8 per cent.

The output of primary goods, which has the highest weightage of 34.04, grew by 6 per cent. The output of intermediate goods, which has the second highest weightage, inched up by 1.8 per cent.

Similarly, the output of consumer non-durables rose during October by 7.9 per cent, and that of consumer durables by 17.6 per cent.

Infrastructure or construction goods' output increased by 8.7 per cent and capital goods by 16.8 per cent.

Commenting on the numbers, Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) Director General Chandrajit Banerjee said in a statement: "The impressive rise of industrial output, which has bounced back sharply to record a growth of 8.1 per cent in October is noteworthy and augers well for the narrative of economic strengthening, going forward. The uptick in manufacturing growth also shows the second half has started off on a positive note."

"High double digit growth in capital goods at 16.8 per cent in October 2018 is an indication of strengthening investment demand in the economy. Demand in the economy, especially in rural India, is reviving as consumer durables grew at the rate of 17.6 per cent in the month of October 2018.

"Going ahead, decline in international crude oil prices and stability in rupee scenario is expected to further strengthen the macro-economic environment in the economy," said PHD Chamber President Rajeev Talwar.
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