Wholesale Price Index (WPI) of India

Inflation a grave concern now.

Published monthly by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry. Updated until June 2018. (Published on July 16th, 2018) 
Note: WPI Food Index consists of ‘Food Articles’ from Primary Articles group and ‘Food Product’ from Manufactured Products. Core WPI represents non-food manufacturing.

Recent Data Trend

The wholesale level inflation as measured by Wholesale Price Index (WPI) rose to 5.8% year-on-year (YoY), highest since Dec'13. This comes after retail inflation touched the 5% mark. Inflation has become a serious concern now both at the retail and wholesale level. The wholesale inflation nearing six per cent indicates that retail inflation won't ease in the near future. The soaring global crude oil prices (Indian basket) rising by around 58% in the last one year have surely aggravated inflation in India resulting an inflation of more than 16% in the WPI fuel group. However, there is more to inflation than just the rising fuel prices.

The global commodity prices have been on the rise which has added to the input cost pressures of the businesses as reflected in the June round of the Industrial Outlook Survey. This is reflected in the manufacturing inflation which reached nearly a 4-year high of 4.2% YoY in Jun'18.

Even the inflation excl. the volatile segments such as food and fuel also point to accelerating inflation. The core WPI (inflation in the non-food manufactured segment) rose to an all-time high of 4.8% YoY in Jun'18. Even at the retail level, the core CPI soared to a four year high of 6.5%.

The WPI inflation in the first quarter (Apr-Jun'18) has risen to a 5-quarter high of 4.6% YoY.

We feel that the underlying inflation in India is accelerating and has gone beyond the comfort zone of RBI which is mandated to keep inflation at 4% in the medium-term. We expect RBI to pull the policy rates as early as Aug amidst soaring inflation and a weak rupee.

Brief Overview

Wholesale Price Index (WPI) represents the price of representative commodity basket of 697 items at the wholesale level, i.e. goods traded in bulk and between organizations, not the end consumers. It is a measure of inflation at the wholesale level. The significant components of WPI include Manufactured Products, Primary Articles, Fuel, and Power in the decreasing order of weight-age to the stated elements. The purpose of the WPI is to monitor price movements that reflect supply and demand in industry, manufacturing, and construction. The WPI index helps in analyzing both macroeconomic and microeconomic conditions.

The WPI inflation has remained in the negative zone for the entire year of 2015 owing to the weak global prices of oil. The wholesale prices fell by 5.1% in August 2015, the highest fall of all time.

The  Office of the  Economic  Adviser in the  Department of  Industrial  Policy and Promotion,  Ministry of  Commerce  &  Industry is responsible for compiling  WPI and releasing it. Since 1947 the index is being regularly published. The latest series of WPI uses the base year as 2011-12.

For more information, please visit the official website.  

Wholesale Price Index, Sub-group: Manufacturing

Wholesale Price Index, Sub-group: Primary Articles

Wholesale Price Index, Sub-group: Fuel and Power

Next Release Date: July 16, 2018

Wholesale Price Index-Quarterly

Wholesale Price Index-Annual

Note: Here year represent fiscal year. For example 2010 refers to the period April 2010-March 2011, and so on. 
The entire series 1970-2017 is on the same base year (2011-12=100). The data post-2012 is in the base year 2011-12. For data, prior to 2012, we have used yearly growth rates obtained from a series of a different base year. For example, the index of 2010 (on 2011-12 base year) has been obtained preserving its growth rate (on 2004-05 base year) and using 2011-12 index value as 100 and dividing it by the growth rate for 2010 obtained earlier.