*Exports slide 12% on recession fears; trade deficit widens to $23.76 bn*
India’s merchandise exports contracted 12.2 per cent year-on-year (YoY) in December to $34.48 billion as slowing external demand amid recession fears in developed economies continued to weigh on outbound shipments, the data released by the commerce and industry ministry showed. Still in the first nine months of the current financial year, exports grew nearly 9 per cent. The latest decline in the value of outbound shipments can also be attributed to the statistical effect of a high base because December 2021 witnessed the second-highest monthly exports in the previous financial year at $39.3 billion. “There are a lot of headwinds. Despite that, our export competitiveness has held its head high… It is clear that there are headwinds and there is a recession in our export countries (markets). Therefore, we need to look at export targets in a manner that we are able to reap benefits in relation to countries witnessing GDP growth, such as Brazil and other Latin American nations,” Commerce Secretary Sunil Barthwal said on Monday.
*WPI inflation cools to 22-month low of 4.95% in Dec as food prices fall*
The wholesale price index (WPI)-based inflation rate for December decelerated to a 22-month low at 4.95 per cent, on the back of a higher base and the easing of price pressure for food and manufactured products. In November 2022, wholesale price inflation stood at 5.85 per cent. In December 2021, it was at 14.27 per cent. The data released by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry on Monday showed food inflation — excludes manufactured food items — at minus 1.25 per cent contracted in December, from 1.07 per cent in November, as vegetable prices (minus 36 per cent) fell from their year-ago levels. However, the inflation rate for cereals, paddy, wheat, and pulses went up in December.
*States' fiscal health better after Covid-19 pandemic stress: RBI report*
The fiscal health of state governments has shown improvement after a sharp deterioration induced by the pandemic in 2020-21, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) said in a report on state finances released on Monday. The better showing on states’ fiscal front has been driven by a broad-based economic recovery and the resultant improvement in revenue collections, the RBI said in the report, which was prepared by the central bank’s Division of State Finances of the Department of Economic and Policy Research. “States’ gross fiscal deficit (GFD) is budgeted to decline from 4.1 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2020-21 to 3.4 per cent in 2022-23,” according to the report.
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Lupin gets USFDA tentative nod for generic drugs to treat HIV infection.
Siemens signs Rs 26,000-crore locomotive order with Indian Railways.
Paytm bank gets RBI nod to operate as Bharat Bill Payment Operating Unit.
SGX Nifty indicates negative start to Indian markets trading at 17929 levels down by 16 points or 0.09%. Dow Jones is ended yesterday`s session in green up by 0.33% at close.
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