Banking Bill set to sail through
Amid the gloom, the industrial production data for October denoting an 8.2% annual growth, contrasting with negative growth reported in five out of the first seven months of the fiscal – brought some cheer. While Chidambaram said the data indicated “green shoots in the economy”, many analysts saw it as a sign that the economy has finally turned the corner. The surge in the index of industrial production (IIP) was, however, enabled by the Diwali spending spree and a low base – the index had contracted by 5% in October 2011 and, hence, many discounted it as an “optical illusion” and drew attention to the high volatility of the IIP data.
The finance minister also said the growth in direct tax receipts in April-November was satisfactory. While the gross direct tax collection grew a modest 7.14% during the period to Rs 3,25,696 crore, net receipts showed a 15.04% jump to Rs.2,70,731 crore, suggesting lesser refunds during the period from a year ago.
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