Indian output in monthly low, recovery awaited

13 May 2009

DELHI: The month of March saw the largest monthly dip in India's industrial production since 1993, as demand for the country's exports slowed around the world, but observers remain positive about the overall prospects of the country's economy.

The 2.3% fall in output from utilities, mines and factories was three times higher than analysts were predicting and the biggest month-on-month drop in 16 years.

More cheery news came from ABN Amro Bank NV's Purchasing Managers' Index, which showed April manufacturing figures to be up for the first time in six months.

"We should be within one to two months of the bottom in industrial activity," commented Philip Wyatt, a senior economist at UBS AG in Hong Kong. “The pace of economic growth remains weak, but lead economic indicators point to a turnaround.”

The Reserve Bank of India forecasts a pick up in the nation's overall economic growth to the tune of 6 percent over the coming year, following a six-year low growth rate of 5.3% in the last quarter of 2008.

Data sourced from Bloomberg; additional reporting by WARC staff