Data recap: Inflation, Nifty, KKR investment, and more

India’s retail inflation eased to 6.83% in August, down from a 15-month high of 7.44% the previous month, due to correction in vegetable prices
India’s retail inflation eased to 6.83% in August, down from a 15-month high of 7.44% the previous month, due to correction in vegetable prices


News and developments from the week gone by, through numbers and charts.

Every Friday, Plain Facts publishes a compilation of data-based insights, complete with easy-to-read charts, to help you delve deeper into the stories reported by Mint in the week gone by. India’s retail inflation eased in August but continued to remain higher for rural areas for the second consecutive month. Meanwhile, Nifty 50 crossed the psychological mark of 20,000 this week.

Price Pinch

India’s retail inflation eased to 6.83% in August, down from a 15-month high of 7.44% the previous month, due to correction in vegetable prices. However, it was still significantly higher than the Reserve Bank of India’s upper tolerance limit of 6.0% and, despite the moderation, food prices remained a pain point, especially in rural areas, where inflation was still 7.02% as against 6.59% in urban areas. This is the second straight month when rural inflation has come in higher than urban inflation.

New High

After crossing the psychological-mark of 20,000 intraday on Monday, Nifty 50 closed above the level on Wednesday despite weak global cues and foreign portfolio investors selling assets worth 1,631.6 crore in the Indian markets. Softer-than-expected inflation and strong industrial production data released on Tuesday brought cheer to the domestic market, with analysts calling the rally broad based, Mint reported. However, worries over contraction in the UK economy and rising crude oil prices could weigh on the markets in coming days.

Raising Stake

2,069 crore: That’s the amount global investment firm KKR is set to infuse into Reliance Retail Ventures Ltd (RRVL) through an affiliate to raise its stake from 1.17% to 1.42%. Three years ago, KKR had invested 5,550 crore for the first time in the retail business spanning grocery, consumer electronics, apparel, footwear, online commerce, and jewellery. KKR is also an investor in digital services platform and a subsidiary of RIL, Jio Platforms Ltd.

Globalisation Gaps

For several decades, countries around the world benefited from a more globalised world through faster and more efficient cross-country movement of goods, services, capital, information and people. However, the pace of globalisation has slowed down in recent years due to protectionist measures, followed by disruptions in the supply chain since Covid-19 pandemic and Russia-Ukraine war. However, according to the DHL global connectedness index, while movement of people and goods plateaued, flows of global information remain as strong as ever, a Mint analysis showed.

Oil Toil

Following the war with Ukraine, Russia started selling its crude oil at discounted rates amid sanctions, which helped India meet its needs at a cheaper price. The share of oil imports from Russia was less than 1% until 2016-17, which shot up to 16.4% in 2022-23, and until July this year, it has risen further to 30.6%. However, with Russia cutting its production to comply with the Opec+ agreement, prices may rise, which has left the Indian government concerned, Mint reported.

Byju’s Bet

$1.2 billion: That’s the amount of loan Byju’s is hoping to pay off by selling kids’ reading platform Epic and higher education platform Great Learning, Mint reported. Byju’s had paid around $800 million to acquire Epic! Creations Inc. and Great Learning Education Pte. in a mix of equity and cash at the peak of the startup boom in 2021. The edtech firm has faced a series of crises in recent months from its auditors quitting, layoffs, to resignations of several directors from its board.

Funding Crunch

As fears of global slowdown loomed large, funding from venture capital dried up and the Indian SaaS (software as a service) industry also took a hit. According to data provider Venture Intelligence, VC funding to Indian SaaS companies dropped by about 80% in the first half of 2023 over the first half of 2022, an analysis by showed. However, global SaaS companies are reporting better revenues and this could help boost investors’ sentiments for Indian SaaS companies too.

Chart of the week: Obesity Hack

Last week, Danish pharmaceutical firm Novo Nordisk dethroned French luxury giant LVMH to emerge as Europe’s most valued company due to the runaway success of its weight-loss jabs Ozempic and Wegovy, which reportedly helped reduce around 12% of body mass on average.

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