RBI's Consumer Confidence Survey rejects Modi govt's 'India Rising' theory

PTI4_12_2018_000195A [File] 48 per cent of the respondents felt that the economic situation has deteriorated in the country | PTI

Pre-poll surveys and 2019 probability surveys might be leaning towards Narendra Modi but the recently published RBI's Consumer Confidence Survey tells another tale. According to RBI's highly rated Consumer Confidence Survey, households' sentiments on the general economic situation for the current economic period has worsened from the previous round. The survey was conducted in May 2018 and the previous round in March 2018. About 48 per cent of the respondents felt that the situation has deteriorated.

Households in general were pessimistic about the employment situation, with 44 per cent of them feeling that it has actually worsened. A significant number of respondents felt that the prices have increased and will continue to increase going ahead. Even though the government has been patting its back on bringing down inflation, 79 per cent of respondents felt that it has actually gone up.

Interestingly, one of the major pointers towards a slowdown is the fact that people's incomes have remained stagnant. 48.9 per cent households said that their incomes have remained same, it has gone up for 27 per cent and gone down for 23 per cent.

And even though incomes have declined, spending has shot up. It can be derived from the survey that people are spending more on essential items. For 85 per cent of the respondents, spending on essential items has gone up while for 52 per cent, it has gone up on non-essential items.

The survey was conducted in New Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Chennai, Kolkata and Hyderabad.

However, Piyush Goyal, finance minister in-charge, dismissed the survey. "I think the facts speak for themselves, with 7.7 per cent growth. Some people with blinkers on seem to have come out with a report that does not gel with reality then I have no answer to them, but there will always be some naysayers in this world,” he said.