Business sentiment in Asia hits two-year high

Companies engaged in financial services were the most upbeat with the sub-index rising to a near four-year high of 75 from 61 in the previous quarter


Naveen Kumar Saini/Mint
Naveen Kumar Saini/Mint

With a slew of data suggesting strong growth in the US and China, business sentiment among top Asian companies has risen, shows a survey by Thomson Reuters and INSEAD.

The Thomson Reuters/INSEAD Asian Business Sentiment Index representing the six-month outlook of 96 firms, rebounded to 70 for January-March from 63 three months prior.

A reading over 50 indicates a positive view.

By sector, companies engaged in financial services were the most upbeat with the sub-index rising to a near four-year high of 75 from 61 in the previous quarter, driven by optimism about a normalization of monetary policy globally and a rollback in onerous regulations.

Sentiment was the lowest in the metals and chemical sector, falling to negative territory for the first time with a sub-index at 40.

Digital ad spends to grow at 30% CAGR until 2021

Digital ad spends will drive the future of advertising in India and are expected to exceed Rs29,400 crore in 2021 from Rs7,692 crore in 2016.

Digital advertising is likely to grow at a rapid pace with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 30.8% until 2021, according to a report prepared by lobby group Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry and consulting firm KPMG on media and entertainment sector.

This growth will be fuelled by factors including increased internet speed driving usage, higher number of mobile users and rising consumption of video online through mobile. Video as a segment has seen about 18% as contribution and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 40% by 2021, added the report.

PP-MLD issuances at five-year high

The number of PP-MLD (principal protected market linked debentures) doubled in fiscal year 2017 to 712 from 333 in FY16.

According to CARE Ratings, the average monthly issuances (i.e. number of term sheets) of PP-MLDs were 60 during FY17 with an average maturity of 2.77 years as against 28 issuances with an average maturity of 2.51 years in FY16. The ratings firm said there has been a sharp rise in the share of PP-MLDs with “other than Nifty 50” underlying instrument, i.e. from 5% in FY16 to 20% in FY17.

Still, the Nifty 50 index continued to be the preferred underlying instrument for PP-MLD issuances as about 80% of the issuances were linked to it. CARE Ratings observes that PP-MLDs having fixed income/coupon pay-off have gained prominence over the last two years as the market has remained volatile.

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