Cost of Living Highlights December 8: The cost of living is the amount of money one needs to survive in a given place – and one's most essential needs such as food, water, housing, taxes, cost of commute, healthcare, etc. The high rate of inflation has pushed up the cost of living across the globe, burning a hole in the common man's pocket. Since the Russia-Ukraine war broke out, the cost of raw materials and commodities has gone up. This has increased India's payments outgo for oil, gold, and other commodities.
The services sector growth in India fell to a one-year low in November on softer expansions in new work intakes and output, despite receding price pressures, a monthly survey said on December 5. The seasonally adjusted S&P Global India Services Business Activity Index fell from 58.4 in October to a one-year low of 56.9 in November. Despite witnessing a month-on-month decline, the rate of expansion was stronger than its long-run average. In Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) parlance, a print above 50 means expansion while a score below 50 denotes contraction. The survey is compiled from responses to questionnaires sent to a panel of around 400 service sector companies.
India's consumer price index (CPI)-based inflation, or retail inflation, might have risen above the RBI's tolerance limit of 6 percent in November, from 4.87 percent in October, according to Barclays' estimates. "We estimate that CPI inflation rose in November to 6.15 percent year-on-year (YoY), a sharp reversal from the moderating trajectory over the past couple of months (October: 4.9 percent, September: 5 percent). Core inflation likely remained stable, and we expect further deflation in fuel prices," Barclays said in a report.
Total outstanding bonds surge in September
India's cumulative outstanding bond value increased to impressive level in September. As of September 30, 2023, India's cumulative outstanding bond value amounted to Rs. 2,05,26,243.06 crores, marking an increase from Rs. 2,00,09,520 crores as of June 30th, 2023. (Read full story )
‘Indicators point to increase in prices of key vegetables,’ says RBI Governor
The inflation outlook would be majorly affected by uncertain food prices. Moreover, high-frequency food price indicators point to an increase in prices of key vegetables which may push CPI inflation higher in the near term, said RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das on Friday.
"Going ahead, the inflation outlook would be considerably influenced by uncertain food prices. High-frequency food price indicators point to an increase in prices of key vegetables, which may push CPI inflation higher in the near term," RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das said.
Das highlighted on the need to closely monitor the sowing progress of key crops like wheat, spices and pulses. He also noted that elevated global sugar prices is also a matter of concern.
"Monetary policy must continue to be actively disinflationary to ensure fuller transmission and anchoring of inflation expectations," the monetary policy statement said.
Top geyser options to survive the the winter season
With the onset of winter season, mercury is falling to significantly low levels in many north Indian states. Significant drop in temperatures during winters, makes geyser a necessary home appliance for modern living. As the temperatures plunge, the search for a reliable and efficient geyser becomes paramount for ensuring a warm and comforting bathing experience. The market is brimming with options, each vying for attention with promises of innovative technology and superior performance. For those who are looking to install a geyser at their home, here are top 10 options from the list (Read full list)
RBI's rate pause expected to boost real estate bringing joy for home buyers
RBI's rate pause might come as a boost for the real estate sector bringing cheer for those who are looking for buying a new house.
Experts from the real estate sector have praised the Reserve Bank of India's decision to keep lending rates steady, highlighting its positive impact on demand and affordability.
Samantak Das, Chief Economist and Head of Research and REIS (India), JLL expressed confidence that steady interest rates would further support the momentum in the residential market.
Niladri Bhattacharjee, Partner at Grant Thornton Bharat, acknowledged the potential for the high growth rate to trigger inflationary pressures, specifically impacting sectors like metals and mining.
While recognising the short-term benefit for the industry of holding rates, Bhattacharjee warned that inflation remains a concern in the long run.
Sushil Mohta, President of CREDAI-West Bengal, welcomed the unchanged repo rate, highlighting its positive impact on homebuyers by avoiding further pressure on home loan costs.
India could buy more oil from Russia amid easing global oil prices
Amid softening global oil prices, India can purchase more Russian oil to accentuate the benefit of low global oil price.
India's purchases of Russian oil could rise due to easing global oil prices, a senior government official told Reuters on Friday.
A retreat in crude prices will bring down the price of Russian oil to below $60 a barrel cap imposed by G7 nations. This would help India, the world's third biggest crude importer, to buy more from Russia, the official told reporters on condition of anonymity.
Huge discount on air travel! Vistata air tickets available at ₹1,923. Check full rates
With an aim to tap customers planning to travel on new year, Vistara Airline is giving huge discount on its air fares. People can book domestic one-way fares start at a minimum price of ₹1923 for Economy Class, ₹2,323 for Premium Economy, and ₹9923 for Business Class. The sale on airline booking will begin on Friday and will end on Sunday. People can book their tickets for travel between 11-Dec-2023 to 30-Sept-2024.
India reduces wheat stock limit to curb inflation
India has reduced the stock limit of wheat that traders and millers can hold to increase grain's availability and moderate prices, said said Sanjeev Chopra, secretary at the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution on Friday.
The volatility in food prices ahead of general elections due by May has emerged as a cause of concern for the government.
Food prices account for almost half of the retail inflation basket and the government is taking supply side steps to tame food inflation.
The govenrment has halved the limit on wheat stocks that are generally kept by traders and wholesalers to 1,000 tonnes. Moreover, there has been a reduction in the inventory limits for millers and retailers, said Sanjeev Chopra, secretary at the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution.
"The idea is there should not be any artificial scarcity... Whatever people are holding has to come out in the market so we have given them 30 days' time to adapt to the new stock limits. Additional availability will have cooling effect on the prices," he added.
Onion exports are banned till March 2024
Ahead of the Lok Sabha election 2024, the Centre on Friday banned exports of onion till March next year. The move has been taken to increase domestic availability and to keep prices in check.
"Export policy of onions... is amended from free to prohibited till March 31, 2024," the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) said in a notification.
The DGFT also said that the exports of onion, however, will be allowed based on permission granted by the government to other countries based on their request.
Currently, local vendors in New Delhi are selling onions at ₹70- ₹80 per kg.
Earlier, the Centre in October had decided to step up the sale of buffer onion stock at a subsidised rate of ₹25 per kg in retail markets to provide relief to consumers. See full here
India is 2nd most sought-after manufacturing destination: FM Nirmala Sitharaman
India is the second most sought-after manufacturing destination in the world, says FM Nirmala Sitharaman in Rajya Sabha. Direct tax collection grows 21.82 pc this year; monthly GST collections stabilised at ₹1.6 lakh crore in a sign of economic growth.
"India's second quarter growth is the highest in the world as India continues to be the fastest-growing economy. The third and fourth largest economies (Japan and Germany) have contracted as well as emerging economies. In comparison, India's over 7 percent growth is significant," Nirmala Sitharaman said.
The Indian economy grew 7.6 percent during the July-September quarter of the current financial year 2023-24. India's GDP growth for the April-June quarter grew 7.8 percent.
She also said that India's merchandise export increased by 6.21 percent to $ 33.57 billion in October.
India is fastest-growing economy: FM Nirmala Sitharaman in Rajya Sabha
Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday said that India's second-quarter growth is the highest in the world as the country continues to be the fastest-growing economy. The minister while replying to a debate in Rajya Sabha on the economic situation in the country.
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday in Rajya Sabha said that the July-September GDP was high and the government continuously maintained the momentum of being the fastest-growing major economy.
Economic activity has been good across sectors; all segments are growing significantly, said FM Sitharaman in Rajya Sabha. Read here
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RBI MPC Meeting: FY24 inflation forecast remains unchanged at 5.4%
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) projects CPI inflation at 5.4 percent in 2023-24 (FY24), unchanged from earlier.
For Q3FY24 (September-December), the projection has been slightly lowered to 5.4 percent from 5.6 percent. The forecast for Q4FY24 (January - March) remains unchanged at 5.2 percent.
Looking ahead to the first (April-June) quarter of the fiscal year 2024–25, the RBI maintains its inflation forecast at 5.2 percent. CPI inflation forecast for July-September 2024 is pegged at 4.0 percent and that for October-December 2024 has been forecasted at 4.7 percent. See more
44% of households experiencing a rise in health-related expenses, says survey
Health-related expenses have seen a significant boost, with 44% of families reporting increased spending on items like vitamins, tests, and healthy food, according to the latest report on the India Consumer Sentiment Index (CSI) by Axis My India.
One of the significant findings from the survey reveals that overall household spending has increased for 58% of families, indicating a positive trend in consumption. However, while the overall score dipped slightly from last month, it remains at a healthy +50, showcasing the continued growth in household spending. Read more here
India has scored on growth, welfare: FM Nirmala Sitharaman
India’s economy has powered ahead of others, and its welfare schemes are now reaching more people, finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman said on Wednesday, in a spirited defense of the government’s work on economic and welfare fronts.
The Narendra Modi administration’s top priorities are the poor, farmers, women, and the youth, and the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party wins elections because the people understand this, the minister said. See details
RBI MPC Meeting: UPI transaction limit for hospitals, educational institutions payments raised to ₹5 lakh
Governor Shaktikanta Das made two announcements related to the Unified Payments Interface (UPI) in India.
The first announcement Das said is for "enhancing UPI transaction limit for specific categories" such as payments to hospitals and educational institutions from the current ₹1 lakh to ₹5 lakh.
Further e-mandates for making payments of a recurring nature have been raised to ₹1 lakh for mutual fund subscriptions, insurance premium subscriptions, and credit card repayments. Read full here
Fuel price in metro cities on December 08, 2023 | Chandigarh
PETROL (Rs/L) - 96.2
DIESEL (Rs/L) - 84.26
Fuel price in metro cities on December 08, 2023 | Chennai
PETROL (Rs/L) - 102.63
DIESEL (Rs/L) - ₹94.33
Fuel price in metro cities on December 08, 2023 | Kolkata
PETROL (Rs/L) - 106.03
DIESEL (Rs/L) - ₹92.76
Fuel price in metro cities on December 08, 2023 | Bengaluru
PETROL (Rs/L) - 101.94
DIESEL (Rs/L) - 87.94
Fuel price in metro cities on December 08, 2023 | Mumbai City
PETROL (Rs/L) - 106.31
DIESEL (Rs/L) - ₹94.27
Fuel price in metro cities on December 08, 2023 | New Delhi
Fuel rates are revised at 06:00 A.M every day. Since June 2017, fuel prices in India have been revised daily, and this is called the dynamic fuel price method.
PETROL (Rs/L) - 96.72
DIESEL (Rs/L) - ₹89.62
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