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Indians less optimistic about economy, but there are still many rays of hope

The majority feel the employment situation has worsened. However, many more are of the opinion that job prospects will be better next year.

ET Bureau|
Oct 14, 2019, 06.30 AM IST
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Share of those who feel inflation will decline increased over the last quarter.
An RBI survey finds most people expect prices and expenses to rise. However, they also expect the employment scenario and incomes to improve.

1. Economy not in the pink of health
More Indians pessimistic about one-year economic outlook compared to last year. However, over half the respondents feel the situation will improve next year.

Current perception
SURVEY ROUND IMPROVED REMAINED SAME WORSENED
Sep-18 33.7 22.1 44.3
Jul-19 37.4 24.2 38.4
Sep-19 33.5 18.6 47.9

Expectation for next year
SURVEY ROUND WILL IMPROVE WILL REMAIN SAME WILL WORSEN
Sep-18 53.2 16.7 30.2
Jul-19 59.4 16 24.6
Sep-19 53.2 15 31.8

2. Job situation grave now, but future bright
The majority feel the employment situation has worsened. However, many more are of the opinion that job prospects will be better next year.

Current perception
SURVEY ROUND IMPROVED REMAINED SAME WORSENED
Sep-18 35.2 19.3 45.5
Jul-19 32.5 21.9 45.6
Sep-19 28 19.5 52.5

Expectation for next year
SURVEY ROUND WILL IMPROVE WILL REMAIN SAME WILL WORSEN
Sep-18 4.1 17 29
Jul-19 56.7 17.5 25.8
Sep-19 51.2 15.4 33.4

3. Be prepared for spike in prices
An overwhelming majority feels prices have increased. Over three-fourth respondents believe they will increase next year too.

Current perception
SURVEY ROUND INCREASED REMAINED SAME DECREASED
Sep-18 88.3 8.5 3.2
Jul-19 81.7 15 3.3
Sep-19 86.1 10.6 3.3

Expectation for next year
SURVEY ROUND WILL INCREASE WILL REMAIN SAME WILL DECREASE
Sep-18 80.1 12 7.9
Jul-19 73.9 16.1 10
Sep-19 75.9 13.8 10.3

4. Rising inflation could eat into budget and investment returns
Close to 75% say inflation has increased. However, share of those who feel inflation will decline increased over the last quarter.

Current perception
SURVEY ROUND INCREASED REMAINED SAME DECREASED
Sep-18 80.8 13.2 6.1
Jul-19 2.5 22.3 5.2
Sep-19 74.2 19.5 6.3

Expectation for next year
SURVEY ROUND WILL INCREASE WILL REMAIN SAME WILL DECREASE
Sep-18 79.8 14.2 6.1
Jul-19 77.8 18 4.1
Sep-19 77.9 16.1 6.1
*Applicable only for those respondents who felt prices have increased or will increase.

5. Incomes stagnant, but should rise
Most respondents feel their incomes have stagnated in the past year. However, the majority thinks their incomes will rise next year.

Current perception
SURVEY ROUND INCREASED REMAINED SAME DECREASED
Sep-18 28.3 48.3 23.4
Jul-19 25.8 51.3 22.9
Sep-19 25 48.3 26.7

Expectation for next year
SURVEY ROUND WILL INCREASE WILL REMAIN SAME WILL DECREASE
Sep-18 59.1 33.1 7.8
Jul-19 55.4 37.7 6.9
Sep-19 53 37.4 9.6

6. Rise in expenses imminent
A large number of respondents saw their expenses rise over the past year. An almost equally large number expect expenses to increase next year too.

Current perception
SURVEY ROUND INCREASED REMAINED SAME DECREASED
Sep-18 78.4 18.2 3.5
Jul-19 71.7 25 3.4
Sep-19 74.1 22 3.8

Expectation for next year
SURVEY ROUND WILL INCREASE WILL REMAIN SAME WILL DECREASE
Sep-18 81.2 15.7 3.1
Jul-19 76.8 20.1 3.2
Sep-19 77 19 4

7. Brace for higher spends on essential items
Eight out of 10 households saw their essential spends shoot up over the past year. The outlook for next year is that essentials will eat more into the household budget.

Current perception
SURVEY ROUND INCREASED REMAINED SAME DECREASED
Sep-18 83.6 13.1 3.4
Jul-19 81.7 15.7 2.6
Sep-19 83.8 13.6 2.6

Expectation for next year
SURVEY ROUND WILL INCREASE WILL REMAIN SAME WILL DECREASE
Sep-18 84.2 13.1 2.7
Jul-19 82.9 14.3 2.8
Sep-19 83 13.7 3.3

Source: The RBI Consumer Confidence Survey, which covered 5,192 households in 13 major cities. All figures denote % of respondents.

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