Economy
India's retail inflation down, but factory output contracts
India's annual retail inflation eased by 100 basis points to 5.05 per cent in August, but factory output again dipped to a negative growth of (-)2.4 per cent in July from an expansion of 1.95 per cent in the moth before, official data showed on Monday.
 
The fall in retail inflation, as per data released by the Central Statistics Office (CSO), was thanks to a rather sharp drop in the annual food inflation -- from 8.35 per cent in July to 5.91 per cent in August.
 
As far as the factory output is concerned, the drag was due to a negative growth of (-)3.4 per cent in the manufacturing sub-index, which enjoys the maximum weight in the main index, even as the growth rates in mining and electricity indices were also modest.
 
In May the factory output was up 1.1 per cent, while in April it took a hit of (-)1.4 per cent. In July last year, there was a growth of 4.3 per cent. Cumulatively, the growth during the first four months of this fiscal is at (-)0.2 per cent.
 
This being the last set of data release on retail inflation and industrial production, ahead of the next bi-monthly monetary policy update due on October 4, expectations have risen sharply on possible interest rate cut.
 
This, also because the annual retail inflation that was above the upper tolerance level of six per cent in July, has since come down by 100 basis points, even though it is still above the base rate of four per cent. 
 
The government target is four per cent plus or minus two percentage points for the next five years.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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Indian microfinance loans grew 29% in Q1 of this fiscal
Ahead of the launch of the Bharat Microfinance Report here later this week, the Microfinance Institutions Network (MFIN) has said the organised industry in this segment has grown by 29 per cent through loan disbursements in the April-June quarter.
 
"The microfinance industry has seen a substantial growth over the last one year. With the increase in number of branches, MFIs have been able to increase their outreach thus expanding their beneficiary base," MFIN -- the self-regulatory body of the Reserve Bank-regulated non-banking finance companies (NBFCs) and microfinance institutions (MFIs) -- said in a statement here, releasing their 18th Micrometer report on the industry.
 
"Total number of loans disbursed has also seen an increase of 29 per cent which significantly contributed to the expansion of the sector," MFIN Chief Executive Ratna Vishwanathan said. 
 
"Overall, the growth has been healthy and it is an indicator of the fact that confidence in the sector has been growing and there is an evident interest in greater investments in NBFC MFIs," she added. 
 
In its report for the first quarter of 2016-17, MFIN said the industry has experienced a growth of 89 per cent compared to the first quarter of 2015-16, and has grown by 9 per cent over the last quarter.
 
The latest Micrometer report is based on data collected from 57 NBFC-MFIs, all of whom have either received or applied for NBFC-MFI registration from the Reserve Bank of India, MFIN said. 
 
The aggregate gross loan portfolio of MFIs stood at Rs 60,165 crore in the first quarter of the current financial year, as compared to Rs 31,869 crore of the corresponding period in the last fiscal, it added. 
 
The gross loan portfolio of MFIs stood at Rs 53,233 crore as on 31 March 2016, up nearly 84 per cent from Rs 28,940 crore a year ago. In fiscal 2015, the gross loan portfolio grew about 48 per cent, while in the previous year growth was at 69 per cent, according to MFIN. 
 
"The transition of Bandhan, one of the largest MFIs into an universal bank and with 8 NBFC-MFIs transforming into Small Finance Banks (SFBs) will have a significant impact on the microfinance sector," the report said. 
 
Bandhan, accounting for 25 per cent portfolio of NBFC-MFI industry converted into a Bank in August 2015, and 8 NBFC-MFIs accounting for another 50 per cent portfolio of the sector are in the process of transforming into SFBs within the next 3 to 6 months, MFIN said.
 
"A fundamental challenge for micro-credit is going to be the increasing flow of money into the system," the MFIN report said. 
 
However, an over supply of money will also open up a much wider range of financial services to low income populations and provide product diversity which is limited in the present dispensation of a mono-line credit product," it added.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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Why business needs to focus on disabled, pregnant women and senior citizens
“We need to give each other the space to grow, to be ourselves, to exercise our diversity. We need to give each other space so that we may both give and receive such beautiful things as ideas, openness, dignity, joy, healing and inclusion”  - Max de pree
 
The disable friendliness of India can be gauged in terms of ease of physical movement, economic opportunities and social inclusiveness for the differently abled. Let me also add few more segments like old persons, pregnant women and temporarily disabled and we have a huge population that faces several issues in terms of physical movement. The main reason for this is lack of disabled friendly infrastructure, like public transport, buildings and crowded nature of cities. However, when we look at the sheer number of people who are denied such facilities it would turn out to be a big asset for every establishment, including corporates. In short, it makes a perfect business sense for establishments to make their infrastructure disabled friendly.
 
From philosophy to economics to business, the mantra for sustainable success is ‘Inclusion”. Let me share some positive best practices in India. 
 
VFS Global for visa and passport application processing services. Indian School of Business (ISB) and Capgemini, a consulting, technology and outsourcing company follow such practices. 
 
The common thread of best practice is that all the three institutions right from conceptualization of their infrastructure they thought, designed and executed an ‘inclusive’, ‘barrier free’ and ‘accessible environment’ for people with disabilities. They are indeed conscientious institutions. A rare breed indeed. Salute!
 
The most significant fact discovered from them is that creating any NEW Infrastructure to be inclusive Does Not Cost more. Nah, not a paisa more! It does not compromise their revenues or profitability. But it can become a means to increase their turnover.
 
In order to present my case for creating more disabled friendly, inclusive infrastructure in future I have coined an acronym- DOPT, which stands for… 
 
D- People with Disabilities (Visual, hearing, Ortho, Spinal Cord Injury, mental retardation)
O- Old (senior Citizens) 60-80 years
P- Pregnant Women
T- Temporarily Disabled (caused due to diseases or accidents)
 
Infrastructure companies cannot ignore the fact that this DOPT Community is a huge consumer segment. Most customers look for ready to occupy spaces, which require minimum modifications and retrofitting including members of DOPT community.
 
1. Features of DOPT Community
 
 
2. Disposable Income and Spending Power of this Community. Worldwide the disability Market alone is 100 crore people and $1 trillion in annual disposable income. Senior citizens control about 70% of the disposable income in the US. Pregnant women and temporarily disabled also need specific clothing, diet, assistive technology and several other items. Cumulatively DOPT is a huge market segment.
3. Indian Accessibility market is valued at Rs4,200 crore (Ref: Shilpi Kapoor, Barrier Break, News Hook developer)
 
The time has come to realise and acknowledge the power of the DOPT community. Their infrastructure needs are similar in terms of an accessible environment. Let’s aim for inclusive action and a win-win situation. The infrastructure community needs to follow the UNCRPD and Indian bye laws to create international class inclusive properties, which does not cost extra. Thus enabling the DOPT Community to perform to their highest potential and collaboratively take our country forward. Let’s change our approach and the way we ‘see’ this new and emerging market. I believe it makes good business sense. 
 

(Dr Ketna L Mehta is an educationist, editor, author and Founder Trustee of Nina Foundation that serves the rehabilitation of economically and socially disadvantaged friends with spinal injuries. She is also Editor and Associate Dean Research, WeSchool.  Email- ninafoundation@gmail.com , www.ninafoundation.org)

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COMMENTS

Param

8 months ago

based on recent visit to VFS office in kolkata, it hardly seems DOPT friendly. if you came in a wheelchair, you would not find a place in the office to stop without blocking the passage. the place was so overcrowded & staff is yelling people to take a seat when no seats are available. putting a disabled sticker on one counter cannot be benchmark for DOPT friendliness. i have more respect for the CISF security guard who allowed some aged & crutch using people to skip the zig zag queue & walk straight thru for security.

Balasubramanian Brahmadesam Canthadai

8 months ago

Why dont you add a line as to where donations can be sent any tax benefits for such donations

Balasubramanian Brahmadesam Canthadai

8 months ago

Why dont you add a line as to where donations can be sent any tax benefits for such donations

Balasubramanian Brahmadesam Canthadai

8 months ago

Why dont you add a line as to where donations can be sent any tax benefits for such donations

REPLY

Sucheta Dalal

In Reply to Balasubramanian Brahmadesam Canthadai 8 months ago

Why not click on the nina foundation link that we make sure we have given at the end. The donation details are there. The effort is probably a couple of clicks only!!

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