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Inflation still at benign stage: Finance Secretary



New Delhi, Dec 16 (IANS) The current inflationary trend was still at a benign stage, said Finance Secretary Rajeev Kumar, here on Monday.

"Inflationary pressure is still very benign and credit growth is also happening as shown in the outreach programmes. We will factor in all these. The inflation is within the segregation — rural or urban", he said after the pre-budget meeting between the Finance Minister and the capital markets industry representatives.

As per the Finance Ministry numbers, there has been strong customer outreach by the public sector banks (PSBs) where Rs 4.91 lakh crore was disbursed in October and November. Of this, Rs 2.39 lakh crore was disbursed in November.

Total support sanctioned by PSBs in the form of credit to (including co-origination and on-lending) and pool buyouts from NBFCs, since the IL&FS default in September 2018, till November increased to Rs 4.23 lakh crore. It included pool-buyouts of Rs 1.24 lakh crore.

The retail inflation has been lurking its head gradually. Leading milk supplier Mother Dairy on Saturday raised prices by up to Rs 3 per litre in the Delhi-NCR, effective from Sunday, due to lower supply and rise in procurement costs. Cow milk prices too has been raised by Rs 3 per litre to Rs 47 per litre.

Earlier the government data showed that retail inflation increased to over 3-year high of 5.54 per cent in November. Food inflation flared up to 10.01 per cent against 7.89 per cent in October on the back of soaring onion prices. The consumer inflation of 5.54 per cent streaked past the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) inflation projection of 5.1-4.7 per cent for the second half of FY20.

According to an RBI projection, food inflation in October was at 39-month high of 6.9 per cent.

"From KYC (know your customer), bonds market development to taxation, there were a whole lot of issues. Very positive comments have come. We are looking at savings and investment of savings", Kumar said.


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