nomura: Third wave drags business resumption to pre-Covid levels

The third wave of Covid pandemic has dragged down business resumption to pre-pandemic levels, Nomura said Monday, citing a 20 percentage point fall in its tracker. The financial services firm expects the budget to prioritise growth with marginal reduction in fiscal deficit for FY23 at 6.4% of GDP.

The Nomura India Business Resumption Index fell to 100.5 for the week ended January 23 from 102.2 in the prior week, with NIBRI now back at the pre-pandemic levels (100).

Nomura, in a note said, it expects mobility and activity to recover in February or March as case growth stabilises.

It said even as new daily cases tracked above 300k, up from about 250k last week, the rate of increase had moderated. A few states, including West Bengal and Delhi, reported lower cases than last week, and death rates remained stable.

Nomura recently lowered its GDP growth forecast to 8.7% in FY22 from 9.2%. It expects the upcoming budget to give priority to growth. “We expect the budget to prioritise growth, with directional fiscal consolidation to 6.4% of GDP in FY23 from 6.8% of GDP expected in FY22,” it said.

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