India GDP growth estimates at 5.7%, says Citigroup

Citi group

Citigroup has lowered India's economic growth forecast to 5.7 per cent, from 6.2 per cent earlier, for the next financial year and said continued action from all policy makers is needed to reverse the decline.

"Taking into account the 5 per cent GDP estimate for FY13 and revisions to past data, we are revising our FY14 GDP estimate down to 5.7 per cent from 6.2 per cent," Citigroup said in a research note.

The government's first GDP estimate for FY13 pegged growth at 5 per cent. Citi's projection was 5.4 per cent for FY13 and consensus was 5.5 per cent.

According to the report, growth has bottomed out and there is likely to be a recovery across all sectors, with agri growth reaching 3 per cent, industry at 4.4 per cent as trends in manufacturing improve.

Services will move up to about 7 per cent and accordingly GDP would move up to 5.7 per cent, it said.

Though the government has taken several measures since September 2012 and growth is likely to have bottomed out in the third quarter of FY13 (October-December) and continued action from all policy makers is needed to reverse the decline across all the macro variables, the report said.

"If current trends in projects stalled/new intentions do not improve, the headline number could be lower by about 60-80 bps," the report said.

In recent times, the Indian government has unveiled a slew of reforms, including FDI relaxation in retail and aviation sectors and partial de-regulation of diesel prices.

Slowdown in growth was mainly due to services sector, whose growth rate dropped sharply to 6.6 per cent in FY13 as against 8.2 per cent in FY12.

Farm growth was impacted by weak monsoons while industry trends moderated to 3.1 per cent due to manufacturing and electricity.

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