Falling for the third straight month, retail inflation stood at 9.31 percent in May due to easing of prices of edible oil and protein-based items, even as vegetable prices inched up sharply.
The Consumer Price Index (CPI) based inflation stood at 9.39 percent in April. It was 10.39 percent in March. The overall food and beverages segment saw an inflation of 10.65 percent in May, higher than 10.61 percent in April.
Also read: April IIP grows at lower-than-expected 2%
The prices in the vegetables basket rose sharply to 9.78 percent in May from 5.43 percent in April, according to data released today.
However, inflation in protein-based items -- egg, meat and fish; declined to 12.52 percent during the month, from 13.60 percent in April. In oils and fats segment, it was 5.49 percent, down from 7.52 percent in April.
Among all the constituents that make the CPI, cereals recorded the highest inflation of 16.29 percent in May. Besides, inflation in pulses stood at 9.59 percent and in sugar it was 9.21 percent on an annual basis.
The rate of price rise in clothing and footwear segment stood at 9.72 percent during the month. In urban areas, retail inflation declined to 9.65 percent in May from 9.73 percent in April.
The CPI for rural population fell to 8.98 percent during the reported month from 9.16 percent in April.
The data for wholesale price index-based inflation for May is expected on Friday. The WPI in April eased to over three-year low of 4.89 percent.
The RBI would take into account the drop in retail inflation and the WPI numbers while formulating its mid-quarterly policy review, which is scheduled on June 17.
In order to accelerate economic growth, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) had last month cut key interest rates by 0.25 percent.
Meanwhile, another key economic indicator the index of industrial output (IIP) grew at 2 percent in April.