India's annual growth slows to 6.7%, Q4 picks up

India's annual growth slows to 6.7%, Q4 picks up

Growth for Asia's third-largest economy, reported by the Ministry of Statistics, trumped forecasts in a Reuters poll for annual growth of 7.3 per cent. GDP had grown at a revised 7 per cent in October-December quarter.

As per the Provisional estimates of national income, the growth rate of GDP at constant (2011-12) prices for the financial year 2017-18 is estimated at 6.7 percent.

Interim Finance Minister Piyush Goyal has said that, GDP growth has been increasing continuously every quarter with growth of 7.7 percent in the fourth quarter of 2017-18.

The minister further said that an enormous growth in the field of manufacturing, agricultural and the construction has also been recorded, while highlighting that the manufacturing and construction areas also provide employment.

However on yearly basis, the Indian economy grew at a four-year low of 6.7 per cent in 2017-18, down from 7.1 per cent in the previous fiscal. However, construction and financial services showed some improvements. This was also seen in the constructive GVA which saw a growth of 11.5 percent year-on-year during the quarter.

"Agricultural activity is likely to be supported by record food grain output, surge in sugarcane production after two years of decline and a sustained increase in pulses output", said Teresa John, an economist at Nirmal Bang Equities Pvt. "The GDP numbers for 2017-18 marginally overshoots the advance estimates of GDP released earlier this year".

"We expect FY19 credit growth to improve marginally to 12-13 percent with private sector banks leading the improvement, with public sector banks being constrained by capital requirements and resolution of stressed corporate loans".

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Manufacturing sector GVA grew at 9.1 per cent in fourth quarter, up from 6.1 per cent year ago.

If the poll is right, January-March would have the fastest expansion since before the government's surprise decision in November 2016 to scrap high-value currency notes and a botched implementation of a goods and services tax (GST) in July previous year stalled growth.

"The Indian economy is in cyclical recovery led by both investment and consumption".

Chief Economic Adviser Arvind Subramanian, who also present at the press meet, said "the impact of GST is behind us".

Annual retail and wholesale inflation accelerated in April, mainly due to higher fuel and food prices.

Talking about growth rates in 2018, Madhavi Bokil, Moody's VP Senior Credit Officer said market turbulence in emerging market counties poses the risk of a negative effect on several countries, while also highlighting the escalating trade tensions between the USA and China as being another looming threat.

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