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Slowdown gets worse, GDP growth sinks to 9-year low

This article was posted on Jun 1, 2012 and is filed under Market News

The country’s economic growth fell to 6.5 per cent in 2011-12, according to official figures released on Thursday. The growth was the lowest in nine years, including the global financial crisis period of 2008-09 when it was 6.7 per cent. The advance estimates for 2011-12 had pegged the growth at 6.9 per cent. In 2003-04, GDP (gross domestic product) had grown four per cent.

Economists have attributed the fall this time to a poor performance in manufacturing, mining and construction, a high interest rate regime, environmental issues, land acquisition problems and an uncertain global economy.

The industry demanded a revival package for the economy. “A comprehensive economic revival package has to be announced at the earliest,” Confederation of Indian Industry Director General Chandrajit Banerjee said. Adi Godrej, chairman, Godrej Group, said the message was clear. “We have to work doubly hard to revive growth. The reforms process should be given top priority. Subsidies should be cut and FDI in various sectors allowed. Above all, politics must not be allowed to come in the way of all this,” he said.

V N Dhoot, chairman and managing director, Videocon Industries, said, “Globally, growth has practically vanished. In that sense, India’s GDP growth of 5.3 per cent is better. But, we need to restore the confidence of foreign investors in India’s growth story. We have to manage both our fiscal deficit and current account deficit better.”

GDP growth in the fourth quarter last fiscal fell to a 32-quarter low of 5.3 per cent. Even in the worst quarter (January-March) of 2008-09, the economy had grown 5.9 per cent. In fact, the quarterly growth was the lowest since the GDP base was revised to 2004-05 from the earlier 1999-2000.

Part of the low growth in the fourth quarter could be explained by a sharp revision of GDP expansion in the corresponding period of 2010-11 to 9.2 per cent from the earlier estimate of 7.8 per cent, according to an analysis by YES Bank.

For more visit: Business Standard

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