Economic concerns tend to be largely local, while trade concerns tend to be global.
That’s the message hidden in Mint’s Influencers Index for the month of July. The month is usually silly season in Europe and the US — it’s when most people take their annual breaks. In India, where most schools reopen in early July, the month tends to be anything but silly from the point of view of news. Sure enough, this July witnessed a closely fought trust vote in Parliament which the ruling United Progressive Alliance won. From the business point of view — apart from finance minister P. Chidambaram and commerce minister Kamal Nath, everyone else in the Influencers Index is either a businessman or a financial sector regulator — there wasn’t much “news” in India and sure enough, the influencers as a group were cited less in local media in July than they were in June (by a mere 7%). At an individual level, however, only six of the influencers were cited less than they were in July. In global media, however, the influencers as a group were cited 58% more in July than they were in June, although much of the gains came from one man, commerce minister Kamal Nath, who played a leading role in a ministerial round of WTO talks at Geneva. Nath was cited almost 700% more in July than he was in June.
The Mint Influencers Index is a monthly, objective measure based on media analysis by Dow Jones Insight, which tracks these leaders, looking at the volume of media citings for each of them as a proxy for their rising or waning influence. The assumption is that visibility and share of voice is good for them and their companies and, in the case of global media, collectively the index is a good surrogate for the growing or waning interest in India.
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