Apr 4, 2008

Economy News 3 April 2008

Rupee falls 22 paise against US dollar

A sharp slide in Asian stocks and renewed fears of capital outflows wiped out March 28 gains in rupee, which fell 22 paise at 40.11/12 against dollar on March 31 with heavy buying of the US currency by oil refiners. Indian equity markets closed 726.85 points down at 15,644.44, following weak global cues as well as the announcement of a new accounting norm for companies. In wide movements at the Interbank Foreign Exchange (Forex) market, the domestic unit fluctuated in a range of 39.84 and 40.15 during the day after resuming at 39.85/86 a dollar from Friday's close of 39.89/90 a dollar.


Infrastructure output up 8.7% in February 2008

Infrastructure sector output grew 8.7% in February 2008 from a year earlier, faster than a downwardly revised 3.1% growth in January 2008, government data showed on Thursday, 3 April 2008. Output had risen an annual 7.6% in February 2007.


Fiscal steps will help moderate inflation: Montek

Fiscal steps taken by the government will help moderate inflation, Montek Singh Ahluwalia, deputy chairman of the planning commission, said on Wednesday, 2 April 2008. He said there was need to recognise that high inflation is a global phenomenon.

On Monday, 31 March 2008, the government announced a slew of measures to rein in rising prices. It has scrapped import duties on all crude edible oil forms. It has cut import duty on refined palm, sunflower, soyabean, coconut oils and hydrogenated vegetable fats to 7.5%. The government has banned export of non-basmati rice.


Exports jump 35.3% in February 2008

Exports from India rose 35.3% in February 2008 from a year earlier to $14.24 billion, government data showed on Tuesday. Imports rose an annual 30.5% to $18.47 billion. The trade deficit for February 2008 widened to $4.23 billion, compared with $3.62 billion in the same month a year earlier. The trade deficit was $72.47 billion in the first eleven months of the fiscal year to February 2008.


Consumer price index up 5.47% in February 2008

Inflation based on the consumer price index rose 5.47% in February 2008 from a year earlier, lower from January 2008's annual rise of 5.51%. Inflation based on the whole sale price index had surged to over 13-month high of 6.68% in mid-March 2008.