Budget 2018: After Finance Minister Arun Jaitley provided the much needed rural infrastructure boost, by hiking of agricultural credit target for the next fiscal by Rs 1 lakh crore to Rs 11 lakh crore while aiming to increase farmers income by 1.5 times, top brokerages from Motilal Oswal and IDFC said that the government has done well by blending pragmatic economics and electoral populism. “We are enthused with the focus towards rurual incomes and consumption,” Motilal Oswal said. IDFC Securities noted that the Budget has focused on getting buoyancy in the rural space. “The Budget will focus on strengthening the agricultural and rural economy,” Arun Jaitley said, adding that the government will set MSP at 1.5 times the cost of production for Kharif crops.
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Notably, in the last full Budget of the present government, Arun Jaitley continued with its effort to boost the infrastructure sector this year too by allocating a whopping 50% increase in the Budgetary allocation to Rs 5.97 lakh crore from Rs 3.96 lakh crore last fiscal year. Brokerage firm CLSA said that the MSP hike may raise concerns concerning inflation. Sharing its budget stock picks, Motial Oswal said that the house likes RBL, Repco, Motherson Sumi, HUL and Titan Company. Global firm Nomura said that Budget 2018 poses macro concerns. “Earnings to GDP ratio is at multi-year lows,” the firm said, adding that there is a strong push towards enhancing of healthcare services via insurance coverage.
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Keeping in mind the rural and middle class population of the country, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has announced world’s largest healthcare program. The new flagship national health protection scheme provides for a health insurance cover of Rs 5 lakh per family per year. Arun Jaitley said that healthcare is a great priority area for the government. “The healthcare scheme envisaged by the government is substantially addressed to rural India,” Arun Jaitley said. Notably, . this is India’s most ambitious National Health Protection Scheme termed “MODICARE” (apparently to replicate Obamacare) under which Rs 5 lakh cover will be provided annually to 10 crore families. Given the healthcare push, Nomura is bullish on the shares of Lal Path labs, Apollo Hospitals, Enami and L&T.