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Latest from EPWRF

Maharashtra Budget – 2016-17: Need to scale up Revenue & not curtail Social Spending - 16/12/2016
Maharashtra accounts for nearly 14% of gross state domestic product (GSDP) of all states. Being one of the largest states in the country, its fiscal strength has a definite bearing on the combined finances of both central and state governments. This article aims to examine the fiscal scenario of the state of Maharashtra by examining trends in its receipts and expenditure of the recent years. In addition, we have considered the actuals for the first half (that is, April-September) of 2016-17 and compared the same with that of the corresponding period of last year.

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Apprehensions about Macroeconomic Scenario - 10/12/2016
Demonetisation and the RBI's monetary policy have created uncertainty in the economy.

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Demonetisation: 1978, the Present and the Aftermath - 26/11/2016
In the context of the demonetisation of ?500 and ?1,000 notes, the issuance of currency and its different denominations are traced over time, while also tracking key macroeconomic features of India's changing economy over the decades. Further, the possible immediate and longer term economic effects of demonetisation are discussed.

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What Is Driving Rural Inflation at a Higher Rate? - 05/11/2016
Consumer price inflation in rural areas has been persisting at a higher rate than that in urban areas and the gap between the two has stood at 1.5 percentage points in May 2016. Inflation of both series slowed considerably during the last two years or so, the moderation in rural areas has been slower than in urban areas. This was partly due to compositional differences accompanied by divergent price movements and partly due to higher marketing costs and trade margins resulting from the prevailing rural-urban divide in terms of infrastructure bottlenecks, inadequate logistics support, etc.

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Estimates of High GDP Growth for 2015-16: Not Entirely Convincing - 25/06/2016
In producing the new series, the Central Statistics Office with its rebased National Accounts Statistics has done a studious job of marshalling diverse sources of data and weaving them together into a composite new source. However, the final picture of NAS data would have been more acceptable if better caution was exercised in using new concepts as well as new sources of data, and in weighing the growth results against frequent and extensive revisions. The CSO has failed to refine the growth results juxtaposed against the repetitive and substantial revisions that the data sources have impelled and have completely ignored the analytical construct of gross domestic product at factor cost.

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Underutilised Fiscal Space: Maharashtra’s Budget Post Fourteenth Finance Commission - 21/05/2016
The hike in tax devolution to states by the Fourteenth Finance Commission to give a larger fiscal space to the states has meant sharp cuts for centrally-sponsored schemes. Studying the case of Maharashtra, it is found that without adequate norms and yardsticks of development expenditure, the state has failed to exploit its fiscal potentials.

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Decoding Divergence in Inflation - 30/04/2016
Price inflation in India as measured by the Wholesale Price Index and the Consumer Price Index has shown diverging trends. While WPI indicates a disinflationary situation for 16 months, CPI indicates inflation. The in-depth exploration into the construction of the two indices indicated that different sample sizes and weights of commodity baskets of both indices along with price interventions by the government are responsible for a large part of the diverging trends in the two price indices.

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Budget 2016: Continuation of Under-taxation and Under-spending - 19/03/2016
Yet another opportunity-this time blessed by windfall gains from lower global crude oil prices-has been bypassed. Budget 2016 sticks to fiscal consolidation and ends up producing a budget where off-budget borrowings help the numbers showing fiscal rectitude and the budget unrealistically increases tax revenue, and within that focuses on the more regressive indirect taxes.

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Continuous Revisions Cast Doubts on GDP Advance Estimates - 05/03/2016
Two recent press releases by the Central Statistics Office substantially revise the new series of National Accounts Statistics. The new releases are more than just routine updates, and entail methodological changes and incorporate new sources of data, perhaps in response to various critiques. Yet, on comparing the advance estimates released with past such estimates, the CSO's latest growth projections once again turn out to be far too optimistic.

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Some Puzzling Features of India's Recent GDP Numbers - 09/01/2016
An analysis of the end-November 2015 data release of the Central Statistics Office raises some issues that must be kept in mind while discussing the state of India's economy. If past trends are anything to go by, economic growth in 2015-16 will not improve in the last quarter as some seem to hope. The movements in the GDP deflators and the very odd behaviour of a gradual decline in the investment rate together indicate that growth in 2015-16 will not end as earlier forecast.

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