GDP Outlook: A report by CRISIL

GDP: Demonetisation pain, GST anxiety to the fore (A report by CRISIL Ltd)

The Central Statistical Office (CSO) released quarterly estimates of GDP for first quarter of current fiscal. Crucially, the government has also revised down gross value added (GVA) growth for the fourth quarter of last fiscal by 50 basis points (bps) to 5.6%, suggesting that the impact of demonetisation on the economy was more than earlier estimated. In the first quarter, real GDP growth slid to 5.7% from 7.9% in the same quarter last fiscal. The slowdown corroborates with corporate results for the first quarter, which had shown net profits declining for chunk of listed firms. The computation of GDP relies heavily on corporate data from the Ministry of Corporate Affairs database. The slowdown reflects sharp deceleration in exports of goods, and some moderation in consumption growth.

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The Blockchain Technology

What is Blockchain Technology?

Before we talk about Blockchain it is important to know the role intermediaries play in economy. Intermediaries like banks and government facilitate the transaction of goods and services by creating trust and certainty. Like when an individual or business makes an electronic payment, they require a bank to track and record the transaction or when an individual buys a real state property then they need local government body to keep records stored.  What if there was a way of making a transaction that didn’t require the use of trusted intermediaries like banks, government or local body?

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The Future of Payments Banks

Navi Mumbai based FINO PayTech Ltd. recently launched the FINO Payments Bank, which is the newest entrant in the space after Airtel, India Post and Paytm. FINO was one of the original 11 applicants which were issued an in-principle approval by the RBI for setting up a payments bank back in 2015. Paytm has also launched its Payments Bank in May 2017 offering an interest rate of 4%.

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It is quite normal these days to be bombarded frequently, with news related to the ecommerce industry which is considered to be a sunrise industry from an Indian context. Exciting news articles quoting astronomical valuations of ecommerce companies have almost become a norm. While it is very affirming and pleasant to paint a rosy picture of the ecommerce industry in India, it needs to be done through a lens of rationality.

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Perfect Time for Oil Pricing Reforms

Oil prices across the world have been falling over past year. They have headed towards south by more than 50 percent. This phenomenon has caused a lot of hesitation across the globe. The economic effects have been beneficial for oil importing countries and detrimental for oil exporting countries. The major oil exporters are Middle Eastern countries, Russia, Iran and Norway and major oil consumers are USA, China, Germany, Japan, etc.  As a result, a redistribution of resources (oil products) is taking place between winners (oil consumers) and losers (oil exporters).  As oil prices are falling, losers are losing a lot of revenue, which, in turn, is reflecting in their balance sheet as petroleum exports is their major income source. On the other hand, winners are enjoying monetary benefits as their imports are decreasing and fiscal deficits are becoming manageable. So, the dilemma is to find a panacea such that both winners and losers should be comfortable with the prices. In other words, we should decide whether to try to push prices up to discourage oil consumption or to try to push further down to capitalize monetary gains which will also discourage oil production.

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