India inflation notches up to 5.7 per cent in January

India inflation notches up to 5.7 per cent in January
Highlights

India\'s consumer price inflation quickened slightly to 5.7 per cent in January, official data showed Friday, presenting a potential headache for Prime Minister Narendra Modi ahead of the national budget due later this month.

India's consumer price inflation quickened slightly to 5.7 per cent in January, official data showed Friday, presenting a potential headache for Prime Minister Narendra Modi ahead of the national budget due later this month.

The acceleration from a 5.6 per cent rise in December marks the sixth month in a row that inflation gained pace, with the rate driven up by higher food prices.

"The pick-up was in large part due to a rise in food inflation, the result of delays in the sowing of the rabi (winter) crop amid unusually warm temperatures in recent months," Shilan Shah, India Economist at Capital Economics, wrote in a note.January's inflation was higher than expected, with the median estimate of 36 economists in a Bloomberg News survey predicting prices would rise 5.4 per cent last month.

However, it still fell comfortably within the central bank's short-term target to keep inflation below six per cent until January 2016.

Modi's right-wing government will present its next budget on February 29 amid growing pressure to deliver long-awaited economic reforms.

India's central bank kept interest rates on hold at 6.75 per cent earlier this month, citing the importance of controlling inflation and a slowing growth momentum in Asia's third-largest economy.

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