• The country’s manufacturing sector activity improved in December driven by new orders that rose at the fastest pace since July as companies ramped up production and resumed hiring efforts, a monthly survey said.
  • Notwithstanding the improvement in operating conditions during December, companies were cautious regarding the annual outlook of 2020 and this could have an impact on job creation and investment in the year, the survey said.
  • The IHS Markit India Manufacturing PMI rose from 51.2 in November to 52.7 in December, registering the “joint-strongest” improvement in 10 months.
  • According to Pollyanna de Lima, Principal Economist at IHS Markit, Factories benefited from a rebound in demand, and responded by scaling up production to the greatest extent since May. There were also renewed increases in input purchasing and employment during December.
  • Investment in India’s real estate sector is likely to rise by 5% to $6.5 billion (around Rs 46,000 crore) this year, driven mainly by huge demand for commercial office assets from IT firms, according to global property consultant Colliers.
  • Last year, the real estate sector attracted an investment of $6.2 billion, up 8.7% from 2018 as foreign investors bought many office properties. Foreign funds accounted for about 78% of the total investments in 2019.
  • After four straight months of contraction in electricity demand that revealed the enormity of the industrial slowdown, the consumption of power increased 1.3% year-on-year in December. According to official data released, the output of eight core infrastructure sectors contracted for the fourth consecutive month in November by 1.5%, with electricity generation falling 5.7%.
  • Till December 15, power consumption was lower than in the year ago period. The consumption has then picked up.
  • The National Green Tribunal strove to play an effective role in resolving environmental disputes in 2019 with cleaning of Ganga and Yamuna taking centre stage as the panel highlighted the urgency of the matter saying “every drop of pollution in Ganga is a matter of concern”.
  • The tribunal not only flagged key environmental issues of the country but brought a new dynamic functioning style for sensitising government machinery to act fast and intensify its surveillance and vigilance mechanism.
  • Investment in new projects increased by more than Rs 1 trillion during October-December 2019 over the same period in the previous year. There was Rs 3.1 trillion in new projects in December 2018. This has risen by 37.4% on a year-on-year basis to Rs 4.26 trillion in December last year, Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE) data showed.
  • Analysts are cautiously optimistic on the Centre’s big bang infrastructure push to achieve its $5-trillion economy target.
  • Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman unveiled Rs 102 lakh crore of infrastructure projects that will be implemented in the next five years as part of the government’s spending push in the infrastructure sector. Projects are spread across power, renewables, roads, railways, and urban development including metros, education, irrigation, health, water, mobility and digital development.