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Q3 GDP numbers today: Will the economy spring a surprise?

All eyes today will be on the coming GDP numbers for the third (October-December) quarter of the current financial year, scheduled to be released later in the day.

The numbers come amid rising hope that the economy may have slowly turned the corner after having shrunk sharply during the past two quarters.

It may be recalled here that the Indian economy witnessed GDP de-growth of 24 per cent and 7.5 per cent, respectively, during Q1 and Q2.

In view of falling Covid caseload and rising public spending, analysts expect GDP to be back in black in October-December.

Some like DBS Bank see growth in Q3 turning positive at around 1.3 per cent. This compares to the (-)7.5 per cent print during the previous quarter (Q2). Economists in a Bloomberg survey, on the other hand, predicted a Q3 growth of 0.5 per percent compared to a year ago.

As for the full-year number, it is being seen at around a negative 6.8 per cent in real terms.

Meanwhile, January business activity in the economy increasingly showed indications of making a rousing comeback after the protracted pandemic lull.

Services activity rose for the fourth month on run in January, while factory activity also continues to expand. Exports too rose in January, riding on sectors such as engineering goods, gems and jewelry, iron ore and textiles.

Car sales, a key indicator of demand, jumped 11.4% in January year on year.

This year’s Economic Survey forecasts the economy to register a 11 per cent rise in FY22. The RBI sees India growing at 10.5 per cent during the same period, while the IMF expects India to grow at 11.5 per cent in 2021.

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