India ends FY24 with a hat trick as No. 1 emerging market: Mint tracker

For the full year of 2023-24, India's average score was 76, well ahead of Brazil at 61 and China at 59.3. (Image: Pixabay)
For the full year of 2023-24, India's average score was 76, well ahead of Brazil at 61 and China at 59.3. (Image: Pixabay)


In 2023-24, India was on top for 10 out of 12 months, and its average monthly score in 2023-24 was the highest in the EM league table.

India has maintained its position as the best-performing emerging market (EM) economy for three consecutive fiscal years, according to a monthly Mint tracker. This achievement is underpinned by consistently high manufacturing activity, relatively controlled inflation, and lately, superior economic growth.

Despite fluctuating monthly rankings among a selection of nine EMs, India's annual ranking (based on the average of monthly scores) has consistently been No. 1 for the fiscal years 2021-22, 2022-23, and 2023-24. 

In 2023-24, India led the rankings for 10 of the 12 months, only falling to second place in April and November 2023.

Over the last three fiscal years, India's lowest monthly rank was fifth, in January 2023. It ranked fourth in February 2022 and October 2022. 

In March, India had a composite score of 66 out of a maximum possible 100, with China and the Philippines scoring 64 and 60, respectively, to place second and third. For the full year of 2023-24, India's average score was 76, well ahead of Brazil at 61 and China at 59.

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Launched in September 2019, Mint’s Emerging Markets Tracker provides a summary of economic activity across 10 large emerging markets based on seven high-frequency indicators. One of the original members of the list, Russia, has been temporarily dropped from the tracker since its trade data has not been reliably available for the last two years.

A country’s score on a given metric is a measure of its distance from both the best performer and the worst performer. The best performer gets a score of 100, and the worst performer gets zero. A country with a reading that is halfway between the two gets 50. The average of the scores of all seven indicators for a country gives its composite score.

India’s score for March was its lowest in four months, having exceeded 80 in both January and February. This dip was primarily due to poor stock market performance—worst among the EMs in the tracker (it looks at the month-on-month change in the average daily market capitalization in a month; India’s declined nearly 1%). Additionally, exports contracted for the first time in four months.

But India was still able to retain the top slot because of the manufacturing purchasing managers’ index (PMI), where it has had the best reading in the league table for 11 months on the trot, and it also has had the best GDP growth for four straight quarters.

China climbed two spots to No. 2 with the lowest inflation rate among peers. Its stock market performance was also the strongest among EM economies. The Philippines continued to hold the third spot with the highest exports growth and a relatively better import cover.

The seven high-frequency indicators considered are real GDP growth, manufacturing PMI, export growth, retail inflation, import cover, exchange rate movement, and stock market capitalization. The latest available data is used, so when it gets updated, the scores get updated in retrospect. This means all ranking is provisional.

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