Headline inflation moves up to 9.73 per cent

New Delhi: Headline inflation hovered stubbornly near the double-digit mark in October, rising marginally to 9.73 per cent as prices of food products, fuel and manufactured goods put more pressure on the common man`s pocket and major sectors of the economy. Inflation, as measured by the Wholesale Price Index (WPI), stood at 9.72 per cent in September. The rate of price stood at 9.08 per cent in October, 2010.

On an annual basis, food items became 11.06 per cent more expensive year-on-year during the month under review. Food inflation was recorded at 9.23 per cent in September. Vegetables grew 21.76 per cent costlier on an annual basis, while fruit prices were up by 11.96 per cent and milk by 11.12 per cent during the month. Eggs, meat and fish witnessed 12.59 per cent inflation during October, 2011.

Inflation in overall primary articles stood at 11.40 per cent in October, compared to 11.84 per cent in September. Non-food primary articles, which include fibres, oil seeds and minerals, grew dearer by 7.71 per cent in October, as compared to a 14.82 per cent rise in the previous month.

Prices of manufactured products, which have a weight of around 65 per cent in the WPI basket, went up by 7.66 per cent year-on-year in October, as against 7.69 per cent in September. Inflation in manufactured items has been high since February this year, when it crossed the 6 per cent-mark. Experts said stubborn inflation will put pressure on the government and the RBI at a time when the latest data shows growth in industrial output plunged to a two-year low of 1.9 per cent in September.