Sales re­bound as con­sumer de­mand re­vives

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - - FRONT PAGE - Zia Haq

NEW DELHI: The con­sumer econ­omy seems to be fir­ing on all cylin­ders once again. From au­to­mo­biles to pack­aged con­sumer goods mak­ers, com­pa­nies are poised to re­port strong, dou­bledigit growth in sales for the third straight quar­ters in the three months ended June, the first quar­ter of the cur­rent fi­nan­cial year.

That’s a sure sign that the man­u­fac­tur­ing econ­omy has over­come the lin­ger­ing af­ter­shocks of the Novem­ber 2016 in­val­i­da­tion of high-value bank notes and the July 2017 im­ple­men­ta­tion of the Goods and Ser­vices Tax (GST), ac­cord­ing to economists.

“The first quar­ter fig­ures will reaf­firm a sus­tained pickup in de­mand in most con­sump­tion­linked sec­tors,” said Prasad Koparkar, se­nior di­rec­tor, Crisil Re­search, an arm of the credit rat­ing com­pany Crisil.

The uptick is likely to be a leg-up for the Bharatiya Janata Party-led Na­tional Demo­cratic Al­liance gov­ern­ment in the run-up to gen­eral elec­tions that are less than a year away. Ro­bust sales of mass-con­sumed items mean higher de­mand for man­u­fac­tured goods.

CON­TIN­UED ON P 17

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