Moneycontrol
Oct 04, 2017 01:13 PM IST | Source: Moneycontrol.com

CPI inflation may undershoot RBI target, interest rate cuts possible: Kotak MF

Some moderation in the GDP growth in Q1 FY18 was expected. But the growth rate of 5.7% was a bit of a surprise.

CPI inflation may undershoot RBI target, interest rate cuts possible: Kotak MF

Lakshmi Iyer

October 2017 monetary policy is on the anvil. Even at the best of times it has never been easy to read the mind of the policymakers. But this time, it is especially a hard task. The CPI-based inflation rate that was curbed with much discipline and effort; is now again beginning to show signs of uptick. It is not hard to discern why the CPI inflation is on a rebound.

The teething troubles of GST related issues have impacted the supply side of the economy. While we are sure that the issues may be resolved soon, yet the price impact has been felt already. To add to that, the rains while largely satisfactory, have still been deficient in parts of Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Punjab.

This may have also impacted the agriculture prices from time to time. To add to that, the WPI is also on the uptick on account of the low base effect. This too may have had its impact on the CPI. With already a rate neutral stance, these data points don’t indicate an optimistic scenario.

But a different picture is visible if we look at the need to stimulate growth. Some moderation in the GDP growth in Q1 FY18 was expected. But the growth rate of 5.7% was a bit of a surprise. This has made the need for pro-growth policy measures imperative. Moreover, while the inflation has blipped up, India still remains one of the few predominant economies with high real interest rates.

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