Connect with us


Surveys suggest possible uptick in global economy in coming week



Grounds for more hope that the global economy can avoid a major slump may emerge in the coming week in business surveys showing gradual improvement across much of the advanced world.

Purchasing manager indexes for both the US and the euro zone are anticipated by economists to tick higher. While several gauges will still suggest contraction, the upward direction of travel could add to a growing narrative that a soft landing is achievable.

At the same time, the full effects of concerted policy tightening by central banks have yet to be felt.

Global PMI Activity

Bolstering such prospects are China’s reopening after pandemic lockdowns, evidence of slowing inflation, and the assured views of some senior European officials that their economies won’t suffer recessions. The International Monetary Fund may even soon raise its outlook for the year, its chief hinted on Friday.

Read| Davos 2023: Economist fear global recession in 2023, states WEF survey

“We have, demonstrably, strength of labor markets translating into consumers spending and keeping the economy up,” Kristalina Georgieva said at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. “With the reopening of China, we expect growth this year to again exceed the global average.”

How the US fares will also be crucial, however, and the first estimate of fourth-quarter gross domestic product there, due on Thursday, may prove instructive. The economy is seen expanding at a 2.7% annualized rate in the final three months of 2022 after a 3.2% pace in the third quarter.

While such a print suggests solid growth, recent data — including retail sales, home construction and industrial production — showed momentum starting to peter out in late 2022.

Economists surveyed by Bloomberg see GDP in the US declining over consecutive quarters in the middle of this year as steep interest-rate hikes from the Federal Reserve take a bigger bite out of demand.

While Asian momentum could provide a fillip to that outlook, the IMF chief suggested there’s a risk its contribution to the world economy might yet go awry.

“What if the good news of China growing faster translates into oil and gas prices jumping up, putting pressure on inflation?” she said.

What Bloomberg Economics Says:

“Fourth-quarter GDP to a large extent will be boosted by robust consumer spending on services, even as they pulled back on goods. Households continued to tap into excess savings brought on by stimulus and to benefit from solid wage gains. Tighter monetary policy means 2023 will see significantly weaker demand.”

Read| Why these major economies may defy recession forecasts

Elsewhere, multiple rate decisions may include a potential final Bank of Canada hike for the cycle, and a 12th consecutive increase in Colombia. Australia and New Zealand may report slowing consumer-price gains, while euro-zone policy makers have a final chance to speak out before their own meeting the following week.

US and Canada

Aside from the PMI and GDP reports in the US, the government is projected to report on Friday that inflation-adjusted personal spending on goods and services fell in December for the first time in a year. The data are also expected to show inflation cooled on an annual basis, while remaining elevated.

Fed officials, who are observing a blackout period ahead of their Jan. 31-Feb. 1 policy meeting, will take into account indications of a slowing economy and moderating inflation.

Other reports are expected to show declines in new-home sales and core capital goods.

Looking north, the Bank of Canada appears set to cap one of the most aggressive tightening campaigns in its history with what economists and markets expect to be a final 25-basis point increase in borrowing costs on Wednesday.

Policy makers led by Governor Tiff Macklem will probably stop short of declaring an outright halt to hikes, opting instead to hold the benchmark overnight night rate 4.5% while keeping a hawkish tone as they monitor how quickly the economy gears down.

The decision is complicated by conflicting data. Canada’s ultra-tight labor market continues to add jobs with unemployment near a record low, and economic output is set to expand in the final quarter of 2022 at about twice the pace of the central bank’s previous forecasts.

Annual inflation is still uncomfortably high at 6.3%, but underlying pressures show clear signs of abating. Canada’s heavily indebted households, meanwhile, are feeling the pinch of higher rates and starting to curb their spending.


Australia and New Zealand report their latest inflation figures in the middle of the week, as the Reserve Bank of Australia considers a pause in its tightening cycle and the RBNZ mulls its next move after a jumbo hike in November.

In South Korea, Thursday’s GDP results may show the economy shrinking, an outcome that could strengthen caution at the central bank.

In Japan, Tokyo CPI data on Friday should signal whether inflation is any closer to a peak in the world’s third-largest economy.

Two closely-watched South Asian economies — Pakistan and Sri Lanka — will decide on their key rates, along with Thailand.

The Philippines reports the 2022 performance of its economy, which President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. had estimated to have grown 7%.

Thailand’s finance ministry will provide its latest economic estimates later in the week. China will be closed all week for the Lunar New Year holiday.

Europe, Middle East, Africa

The final window for European Central Bank officials to communicate before their Feb. 2 rate decision will close on Thursday.

Several appearances are scheduled before then, including two by President Christine Lagarde, who pledged to Davos attendees that she’ll “stay the course” on monetary policy.

Meanwhile, euro-zone data may give further indications of the health of the economy.

Read| World food prices hit record high in 2022 despite December fall

In Germany, where Chancellor Olaf Scholz is now convinced a recession will be avoided, the Ifo business sentiment report on Wednesday is forecast to show improvement across all gauges.

A first estimate of Spanish fourth-quarter GDP, meanwhile, may reveal slight expansion.

The UK faces a quieter few days than recently, with no Bank of England monetary policy speakers scheduled, and the PMI survey and public-finance data among the only items on the calendar.

In Hungary, the central bank will set its base rate at a monthly meeting on Tuesday, with investors then eyeing a potential pivot toward monetary easing at a deposit tender two days later. Further east, Ukrainian officials are seen keeping their benchmark unchanged at 25%.

Over to Africa, Nigeria’s central bank is expected to slow monetary tightening on Tuesday with a 50-basis-point increase. Inflation unexpectedly slowed in December, but remains well above the policy rate, deterring savings.

On Wednesday, policy makers in Mozambique will probably leave official borrowing costs unchanged for a second straight meeting with inflation forecast to slow.

After front-loading its fight against the worst global inflation shock in a generation, the South African Reserve Bank will probably also slow the pace of rate hikes on Thursday. Traders are pricing in a more than 80% chance of a 25 basis-point increase.

Latin America

On Tuesday, mid-month consumer price reports are likely to underscore the daunting challenge confronting policy makers in the region’s two biggest economies.

Brazil’s year-on-year result may only post an incremental move lower from 5.9%, while Mexico’s headline and core prints remain all but unchanged from their most recent readings of 7.86% and 8.34% respectively.

In Argentina, GDP-proxy data may disappoint for a third month, with the overvalued peso and near triple-digit inflation threatening a fourth-quarter contraction.

Chile’s central bank is all but certain to keep its key rate at a two-decade high of 11.25% for a second straight meeting on Thursday. Inflation running four times the target with the economy slipping into recession puts central bank chief Rosanna Costa in a tight spot.

Colombia watchers by and large expect Banco de la Republica to extend a record hiking cycle — a 12th straight rate increase to 13% — in the face of the sharpest bout of inflation in a generation.

Surprisingly, Finance Minister Jose Antonio Ocampo, a voting member on the board, on Tuesday said the bank doesn’t need to raise again and that inflation has peaked, both calls at odds with the bank’s own surveys of analysts. Something has to give.

Source link


Union Budget 2023: Centre plans to table 19 bills during the session



The Narendra Modi government plans to introduce 19 new bills, including The Inter-Services Organisation (Command, Control and Discipline) Bill that aims to empower the commander- in-chief or the officer-in-command of inter-services organisations for maintenance of discipline and proper discharge of their duties. A total of 26 bills, including seven pending bills, will form the legislative agenda of the government in this budget session.

The first half of the session, scheduled till February 13, will be primarily spent on discussing the President’s address to the joint sitting of both Houses and the Budget, and, according to functionaries familiar with the matter, could end on February 10.


The list of bills includes The Development of Enterprises and Services Hubs (DESH) Bill, 2023 that seeks to replace and repeal the Special Economic Zones Act and to frame rules, as well as the Trademarks (Amendment) Bill, 2023 for a convenient and cost-effective way of managing trademarks. Similarly, the government will bring legislation to amend the GI Act to make some of the procedures simpler in order to be more accessible to stakeholders.

The government will also bring three bills related to Jammu and Kashmir: To change the nomenclature of “weak and underprivileged classes (social castes)” in the Jammu and Kashmir Reservation Act to “Other Backward Classes”, inclusion of the Valmiki community as a Scheduled Caste and to revise the list of Scheduled Tribes in Jammu and Kashmir.

ALSO READ: After ‘smart recovery’ from Covid, what do MSMEs expect from Budget 2023

Among the new bills listed for introduction, the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains (Amendment) Bill, 2023 envisages rationalising the prohibited area and other amendments, the Forest (Conservation) Amendment Bill, 2023 to promote plantation in non-forest areas and conserve forests, and the Coastal Aquaculture Authority (Amendment) Bill, 2023 are seen as important.

Bills to set up a National Dental Commission, the National Nursing and Midwifery Commission, and making the registration of birth and deaths people-friendly are also on the agenda. The government plans to bring legislation to empower the Kalakshetra Foundation to award certificates, diplomas, postgraduate diplomas in arts, crafts and other fields.

The multi-state cooperative authorities amendment bill, being reviewed by a joint committee, has been listed for passage.

Read | Union Budget 2023 to be tabled in Parliament today. Here are 5 big expectations

The government’s floor managers and Lok Sabha floor leaders discussed the agenda for the first half of the budget session in a meeting on Tuesday afternoon. “The government managers indicated that the first half will not have any non-financial legislative agenda. We have roughly eight days in hand in the first half, which would be entirely devoted to the two discussions,” a person who attended the meeting said, asking not to be identified.

After the budget is presented in Parliament on Wednesday, the Business Advisory Committee of both Houses will meet to allot discussions on the demand for grants of individual ministries in the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha.

At the meeting of government and opposition leaders on Tuesday, many leaders argued against the session carrying on till February 13. “You can say there was a sense of the House that the session of February 13 could be avoided as parliamentarians will have return to Delhi after a weekend break for just one day of proceedings,” said a senior leader.

Those who attended the meeting pointed out that February 11 and 12 being Saturday and Sunday, “it is better that the first half of the session ends on Friday, February 10. If needed, we are ready to sit for a few extra days in the second half,” according to another person who attended the meeting, and who too did not wish to be identified.

The budget session of Parliament, the longest in a calendar year, is scheduled to have 27 sittings and continue till April 6 with a month-long recess to examine the budget papers, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi said earlier.

Parliament will reconvene on March 12 for the second part of the session.

In the last winter session, both Houses were adjourned four working days ahead of the schedule after a number of Opposition leaders demanded adjournment citing Christmas and the festive season. The session, however, saw limited government business and introduction of only seven of the 16 non-financial bills from the government’s agenda.

Traditionally, both Houses approve the motion of thanks to the President’s speech and the Lok Sabha clears the general budget in the first half. The Upper House, with no power to veto any finance bill or budget proposal, only refers it back to the Lok Sabha.

The discussion on demand for grants and the approval for the finance bill takes place in the second half. After the budgetary approvals—part of the government’s constitutional obligation—are over, the government presents its legislative agenda for passage.

Source link

Continue Reading


Economic Survey projects GDP growth at 6-6.8% for FY24



India’s GDP will grow at a baseline value of 11% in nominal terms and 6.5% in real terms in 2023-24, according to the 2022-23 Economic Survey, which put real growth in the range of 6-6.8% depending on downside and upside risks.

It added that structural reforms undertaken over the past eight years — GST, inclusion, privatisation, ease of doing business, creation of a public digital infrastructure, and other such — haven’t really paid off on account of shocks to the economy such as balance sheet stress of banks and private sector companies, the pandemic, and a global commodity price shock. As these “fade away”, the “economy is well placed to grow at its potential in the coming decade”, the survey argued.

The survey, tabled in Parliament on January 31 underlined the fact that “agencies worldwide continue to project India has the fastest growing major economy” despite the three shocks of Covid-19, the Russia-Ukraine war, and synchronised policy rate hikes by central banks across the world that led to appreciation of the US dollar and widening of the current account deficit (CAD) in net importing economies.

Also Read | Union Budget 2023 to be tabled in Parliament today. Here are 5 big expectations

The survey credited private consumption and (government driven) capex (capital expenditure) as the principal drivers of growth in 2022-23 even as it underlined that “private capex soon needs to take up the leadership role to put job creation on fast track”.

Chief Economic Adviser V Anantha Nageswaran, the architect of the Economic Survey attributed the reason behind the range to geopolitical uncertainties globally.

He said the survey gave a range between 6% and 6.8% deliberately. “We do understand that global political and economic environment remain still ripe with uncertainties. We have many known-unknowns as well as unknown-unknowns.”


“We also do not know how the speed with which global economy recovers, will lead to the kind of inflation pressures that we saw last year,” he said. In this context, he pointed to the rapid reopening of the Chinese economy. And “as of now” the US economy looks to avoid “a full-fledged formal recession”, he added.

The CEA said international crude oil and industrial metal prices would also impact the GDP growth because they are higher compared to December 2022. “From the Indian standpoint, a moderate to somewhat significant global economic slowdown will [lead to better outcome] because it would lead to lower commodity prices and secession of interest rate tightening in the developed world, weaker dollar, etc.,” he said. “Therefore, in order to make sure, that we fully accommodate the downside risks the band has been kept at 6 to 6.8 %, and baseline number at 6.5 percent.”

The survey identified four key upsides in India’s growth outlook. They are, limited health and economic fallout for the rest of world from the surge in Covid-19 infections in China; inflationary impulses from China’s opening up turning out to be neither significant nor persistent; and recessionary conditions in major advanced economies triggering a cessation of monetary tightening and return of capital flows to India amidst stable domestic inflation below 6%. These three factors, the Economic Survey reasoned, would generate the fourth upside, an improvement in animal spirits providing further impetus to private sector investment.

Commenting on India’s performance in 2022-23 — economic growth “in the range of 6.5-7% — the survey noted that while RBI’s interest rate hikes, widening of CAD, and plateauing export growth, posed downside risks to India’s growth, “the growth estimate for 2022-23 is higher than for almost all major economies and even slightly above the average growth of the Indian economy in the decade leading up to the pandemic”. India’s growth performance, “and that too without the advantage of a base effect”, the survey noted, was “a reflection of India’s underlying economic resilience, of its ability to recoup, renew and reenergise the growth drivers of the economy”, with “the domestic stimulus to growth seamlessly replacing the external stimuli”.

This achievement has been made in a uniquely difficult global economic environment which has suffered three global economic shocks since 2020, unlike in the past when global economic shocks were severe but spread across time, the survey said.

Praising the post-pandemic capex focus in central government spending, the survey underlined that the capex focus in the last two budgets “was not an isolated initiative meant only to address the infrastructure gaps in the country” but “part of a strategic package aimed at crowding-in private investment into an economic landscape broadened by the vacation of non-strategic public sector enterprises (disinvestment) and idling public sector assets”.

Indicating that the government will adhere to its fiscal deficit target for 2022-23 and continue on the fiscal consolidation path in the Union Budget, the survey said that higher buoyancy in both direct taxes and Goods and Services Tax (GST) along with limited growth in revenue expenditure “should ensure the full expending of the capital budget within the budgeted fiscal deficit”.

With concerns around a K-shaped recovery in the Indian economy, the Economic Survey argued that India’s growth performance has been inclusive with the Periodic Labour Force Survey (PLFS) showing a lowering of unemployment rates and increase in labour force participation rate. Schemes such as the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS) and the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) also played their part in helping smaller firms and the poor, the survey said.

Lakshmi Iyer, CEO-Investment Advisory at Kotak Investment Advisors Ltd said: “The economic survey has projected FY 2024 growth at 6-6.8%. This seems a tad stretched given the fact that there is a global slowdown, specifically in global exports. It also comes at a time when domestic demand is slowing down initially and we need to be fiscally prudent, especially after almost 3 years of fiscal breach (globally too) due to the pandemic phase.”

Experts are optimistic about India’s growth next year provided the government gives proper policy push. “While there are talks of a global slowdown, expectation continues for India to be the fastest growing economy in the world. Though inflation has been amplified by geo-political challenges, India should quickly create value based global supply chains so as to attain cost effective growth,” said Yezdi Nagporewalla, CEO, KPMG in India.

“The strong balance sheet of banks and corporates are rightly assumed to give a private capex push in addition to the government capex push if the assumptions on the external and demand front are realised,” Sanjeev Krishan, Chairperson, PwC in India, added.

Source link

Continue Reading


Union Budget 2023 to be tabled in Parliament today. Here are 5 big expectations



Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman will present the Union Budget 2023 in the Lok Sabha in a few hours from now. It will be the last full budget of the Narendra Modi government before it faces the general elections in the summer next year.

When the finance minister begins her address at 11 am, the Indian middle class and India Inc would be keenly waiting for some relief in wake of global meltdown.

On Tuesday, the Economic Survey tabled in Parliament pegged India’s real growth in the range of 6-6.8 per cent depending on the downside and upside risks. The survey underlined the fact that the global agencies continue to project India as the fastest growing major economy despite the Covid-19 shocks, the Russia-Ukraine war and the policy rate hikes by the central banks across the world.


Later, chief economic advisor V Anantha Nageswaran said that the Indian economy is poised to do better on the back of the reforms undertaken by the Centre and expected to clock a 6.5-7 per cent growth in the remaining part of the decade. He added that the inflation by and large is likely to be ‘well behaved’ in the upcoming fiscal barring headwinds.

Here are the five big-ticket expectations from Nirmala Sitharaman’s fifth budget.

1. Income tax relief: The salaried professionals are the taxpayers who have the most expectations from the Budget. The middle class has been hit the hardest by increasing prices of essentials and fuel price hike. The expectations are rife that the finance minister may tweak income-tax slabs to provide middle class a much needed relief. Recently, Sitharaman said she identifies herself as a middle class and understands the pressure faced by the section.

2. Real estate sector: The real estate sector has managed to bounce back following the dry spell due to Covid-19 pandemic. The housing sector is eyeing a robust demand in the upcoming financial year. The key expectations include relaxations in taxes, reduction in stamp duty, reduction in GST on raw materials like cement and steel. Arihant Infrastructures, CMD, Ashok Chhajer told ANI that the government should focus on reducing home loan rates. “The government should reduce home loan rates. The affordable housing segment, which is capped at 45 lakh, should be changed to 60-75 lakh which is the average cost of a house in Metro cities and 2-tier cities,” said Chhajer.

ALSO READ: After ‘smart recovery’ from Covid, what do MSMEs expect from Budget 2023

3. Healthcare: The healthcare sector is expecting more spend on boosting the health infrastructure in the country. According to the Economic Survey tabled in the Parliament, the Centre’s share in the total health expenditure increased from 28.6 per cent in the financial year 2014-15 to 40.6 per cent in 2019-2020. The survey stated the government has also strengthened health infrastructure and prepared itself to address present and future needs, PTI reported.

4. Railways: The Railway budget is included in the Union Budget which will be tabled today. The expectations of general public include controlling train ticket fares, focus on cleanliness in trains, increase in number of trains among others. The students have demanded that Railways run separate trains for them to appear for exams in other cities.

5. Manufacturing: The experts have high expectations from the budget as they feel it will re-energise the manufacturing sector which is trying to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic impact. The sector is expecting new policies, concessions and other schemes for growth.

(With PTI, ANI inputs)

Source link

Continue Reading