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Saturday, March 21, 2009

World Bank President predicts 2009 as "VERY DANGEROUS"

(World Economy Updates) - World Bank President Robert Zoellick warned on Saturday of the consequences of an expected steep decline in economic growth across the world this year.

"I think 2009 is going to be a very dangerous year," Zoellick told a conference in Brussels, citing World Bank forecasts of a spike in infant mortality associated with the economic crisis, and a fall-off in world trade.

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Zoellick proposed that the Group of 20 major and emerging economies -- whose leaders are due to meet in London next month -- establish a review process to see whether further stimulus measures would be needed to kickstart recovery.

posted under - world economy updates, recession news, economic crises updates, economy of world, 2009 predictions, economic crises of 2009

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Wholesale Inflation at all time low of 0.44 percent

Inflation for the week ended March 7 fell to an all time low of 0.44%. The sharp fall in inflation was due to several factors including easing prices of food articles and fuel items along with a high base effect. Annual inflation as measured by Wholesale Price Index (WPI) was at 2.42% in the week before and at 7.78% in the corresponding week last year.

The inflation for food articles eased considerably to 7.34%. It had touched a 10-year high of 11.64% in the beginning of the year. Prices of food articles for the week ended March 7 touched the lowest since the beginning of the year.

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The sharp fall in annual inflation as measured by fuel index was due to fall in prices of jet fuel and electricity for agriculture each of which fell by 8%. The fuel prices are currently witnessing negative inflation to the range of 6% and are expected to dip further into negative territory.

The higher base effect along with low demand in the economy is expected to keep inflation in negative territory for 5 to 6 months." Inflation will turn negative starting from April and will remain so until the end of 2009," said Tushar Poddar, an economist with Goldman Sachs Inc. in Mumbai. "We expect the Reserve Bank to ease liquidity" to support growth. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) said this week India should rely more on monetary policy to support the economy as high public debt makes fiscal efforts difficult.

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Retail inflation as measured by the consumer price index for industrial workers has moved up to 10.45% in January, the highest since December 1998. The consumer-price index for farm workers increased 11.62% in January from a year earlier, following an 11.14% in December. The central bank said this month consumer prices will decline after a lag, without specifying a time frame.

The commerce ministry today revised the rate for the week to Jan. 10 to 5.46 percent from 5.60%.

posted under - inflation updates, indian economy blog, economy of india, indian inflation updates, march inflation updates, economic crises updates

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Economy may grow 6.5-7 pc in next fiscal year - (09-10)

The economy may expand between 6.5 per cent and 7 per cent in the year to March 2010, as stimulus measures are expected to revive growth, a member of Planning Commission said on Wednesday. Abhijit Sen, however, said there was need for more fiscal and monetary steps to maintain growth momentum in Asia's third largest economy hit by global slump and sluggish domestic demand.

"We have done a worst-case calculation on the basis of no effect of the stimulus and what we know currently about the world economy. On that basis, the worst case scenario is about 5 per cent growth," he said after a business conference.

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But the stimulus packages already announced were expected to ratchet up growth rate by 1.5 to 2 percentage points over and above the minimum assessment, he said. "That would take the growth rate to 6.5 to 7 per cent." Earlier, the government estimated 2008/09 growth at 7.1 per cent, but analysts have raised doubts after December quarter data showed a lower-than-expected 5.3 per cent expansion and the global economic situation worsened.

May be this prediction might be lowered down in later half of 2009 as the condition doesn't seem to improve in near future. who know's??

posted under - Indian economy blog, indian economy updates, economy of india, economic crises updates

IMF to India - more monetary steps required for fighting slowdown

The IMF (International Monetary Fund) on Wednesday advised India to initiate more monetary steps to battle the country's slowing economic growth, which the international multilateral agency expects to moderate to 6.25 per cent in the current fiscal and fall further by one percentage point in 2009-10.

With inflation softening to a six-year low of 2.43 per cent, there is scope for further easing of monetary policy, the IMF said in its review of the economy following Article IV consultations with the Indian authorities.

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"A number of (IMF) directors saw scope for further monetary easing, in (the) light of the projected decline in inflationary pressures and the need to reinforce confidence and sustain bank credit," the review said.

The IMF expects average inflation to moderate to 2 per cent in 2009-10 from about 8.8 per cent in the current fiscal. Inflation has been coming down consistently after touching a peak of 12.91 per cent in August last year.

The gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate in the current fiscal has been projected at 6.25 per cent by the IMF, as against the government's forecast of 7.1 per cent.

The IMF expects the growth rate in the next fiscal (2009-10), beginning less than a fortnight from now, to fall to 5.25 per cent. As part of the annual exercise to review the economies of the member countries, the IMF's executive board had held consultations with the Indian authorities on February 6.

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While suggesting that India focus on monetary measures, the IMF cautioned that additional expenditure and more tax reliefs for fighting economic slowdown could raise public debt to unsustainable levels.

Noting that the key short-run policy objective should be to sustain liquidity and credit flows, the review said "monetary and structural policies will have to continue to carry most of the burden of adjustment".

And already the fiscal deficit of india has increased many times and government is still giving more sops to business houses and people just to get a WOW factor ahead of 15th general elections.

posted under - Economic crises updates, indian economy updates, economy of india, indian economy blog

India and China better then other bric countries

The global economic downturn has not left the emerging countries unscathed with India and China witnessing moderation in their economic growths, but experts believe the two countries are holding on relatively well among other developing nations.

According to a latest report by leading brokerage firm Sharekhan, "Asian emerging markets too are facing their own share of economic moderation owing to weakness in external trade, foreign inflows and economic sentiment. Importantly, India is holding on well, though the GDP growth has moderated to 5.3 per cent year-on-year (for Q3FY2009) compared with 7.6 per cent in Q2FY2009."

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Experts believe that though the fastest-growing economies of China and India have suffered some moderation, they are showing much more endurance than the other two countries in the BRIC pack - Brazil and Russia.

"Among the BRIC countries, India and China are relatively showing resilience as they are still reflecting GDP growth rates as high as six per cent to eight per cent," SMC Capitals equity head Jagannadham Thunuguntla said.

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Angel Broking Research Head Hitesh Agrawal also believes that India and China are relatively well-placed compared with Brazil and Russia, evident from the contractions witnessed in the latter two over the last six-eight quarters.

with extracts from economic times
posted under - indian economic updates, indian economy, bric countries, economy of india, economic slowdown and india