KATHMANDU, Oct 19: Inflation moderated to 11.2 percent in September from the nearly three-year high of 11.9 percent recorded in August as prices of vegetables and fruits fell in the one-month period.
Vegetable prices declined by 6.1 percent in the one-month period between mid-Aug and mid-Sept, while prices of fruits went down by 4.4 percent, the latest macroeconomic report of Nepal Rastra Bank showed.
However, year-on-year comparison showed significant rise in prices of these commodities.
Vegetables, for instance, became expensive by 9.9 percent in September as against the price recorded in September of last year. Similarly, fruit prices went up by two percent this September as against the price of September last year.
Year-on-year comparison of prices showed that overall food items had become expensive by 10.4 percent this September, while prices of non-food items soared by 11.9 percent in the same period.
The Rastra Bank report also showed that price hike was more aggressive in Kathmandu, where consumer prices surged by 11.9 percent in September. Likewise, consumer prices in the Terai region went up by 11.2 percent in the month, while inflation stood at 10.5 percent in the hilly region in September.
Despite 11.2-percent rise in prices of food and non-food items throughout the country, income of working people went up by 10.6 percent in mid-Sept.
The Rastra Bank report however, showed discrepancy in the rise in income of those working in the formal sector and those working on daily-wage basis.
Wages of those working in the formal sector, for instance, rose by mere 0.2 percent in mid-Sept as against that of mid-Sept 2011, while wages of those working in the informal sector surged by 13.3 percent in the same period.
The National Salary and Wage Rate Index of the government showed that wages of industrial laborers posted the biggest hike of 19.2 percent in one-year period through mid-Sept. This was followed by rise in income of carpenters, who took home 12 percent more income this mid-Sept than in mid-Sept of last year.
However, salaries of those working in government offices, banks, private institutions, education sector remained the same in the one-year period through mid-Sept. Salaries of armies and police also did not go up during the period, while wages of those working in state-owned enterprises surprisingly rose by 4.2 percent.