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Date : Feb 06, 2020
Industrial Outlook Survey of the Manufacturing Sector for Q3:2019-20

Today, the Reserve Bank released the results of the 88th round of the Industrial Outlook Survey (IOS) conducted during October-December, 2019. The survey encapsulates qualitative assessments of the business climate by companies in India’s manufacturing sector for Q3:2019-20 and their expectations for Q4:2019-201. In all, 775 companies responded in this round of the survey.

Highlights:

A. Assessment for Q3: 2019-20

  • Order inflows and output staged an uptick in Q3:2019-20, reflecting some turnaround from negative sentiments exhibited in the previous quarter, but the sentiments on employment conditions remained weak.

  • Consistent with the weak global demand conditions, manufacturers assessed sluggish external demand in Q3:2019-20.

  • Sentiments on overall financial situation, which had dipped in the previous survey round, moved into the zone of optimism.

  • Assessment of cost pressures emanating from interest payments on borrowings, purchase of raw materials and salary expenses softened in Q3:2019-20, but that for profit margins continued to be subdued due to weak demand and negative sentiments on selling prices.

  • The Business Assessment Index (BAI)2 was at 93.0 in Q3:2019-20, slightly higher than the earlier print of 92.5 for Q2:2019-20.

B. Expectations for Q4: 2019-20

  • Going forward, respondents expect improvement in demand parameters such as production, order books and exports in Q4:2019-20. Expectations on employment have also improved, though marginally.

  • Manufacturers remain optimistic on the overall financial situation in Q4:2019-20.

  • With lower optimism on selling prices, manufacturers expect a drop in profit margins despite muted cost pressures.

  • Business Expectations Index (BEI) increased from 102.2 in Q3:2019-20 to 105.0 in Q4:2019-20.

Chart I

Summary Table
Net responses3
(per cent)
Parameters Assessment period Expectations period
Q2:2019-20 Q3:2019-20 Q3:2019-20 Q4:2019-20
Production -1.9 0.4 13.9 17.2
Order Books -2.8 0.3 13.9 16.6
Pending Orders 21.0 22.1 14.4 15.9
Capacity Utilisation -9.0 -8.3 4.4 7.9
Exports 0.0 -0.9 7.3 8.6
Imports 1.5 0.9 6.4 5.4
Employment -0.9 -1.6 0.7 1.8
Financial Situation (Overall) -1.1 5.3 15.8 19.5
Availability of Finance (from internal accruals) 6.9 6.6 13.2 13.4
Availability of Finance (from banks and other sources) 4.3 7.2 12.7 11.7
Availability of Finance (from overseas, if applicable) 2.8 2.5 5.1 3.0
Cost of Finance -13.1 -8.7 -10.0 -7.9
Cost of Raw Materials -35.3 -26.1 -30.8 -30.0
Salary/ Other Remuneration -36.0 -27.0 -23.2 -22.1
Selling Price -7.6 -9.6 4.6 2.2
Profit Margin -22.6 -22.1 -8.5 -10.2
Overall Business Situation -0.8 3.5 21.7 22.6
Note: Please see the excel file for time series data

Table 1: Assessment and Expectations for Production
(Percentage responses)@
Quarter Total response Assessment Expectations
Increase Decrease No change Net response Increase Decrease No change Net response
Q3:2018-19 1,267 38.2 13.3 48.5 24.9 41.6 9.0 49.4 32.5
Q4:2018-19 1,258 40.2 14.9 44.9 25.3 43.5 7.2 49.3 36.3
Q1:2019-20 1,231 38.6 15.6 45.8 23.0 42.1 9.3 48.5 32.8
Q2:2019-20 481 26.5 28.4 45.2 -1.9 40.1 11.0 48.9 29.1
Q3:2019-20 775 28.7 28.3 43.1 0.4 34.8 21.0 44.2 13.9
Q4:2019-20           35.4 18.2 46.4 17.2
‘Increase’ in production is optimistic.
@: Due to rounding off percentage may not add up to 100.

Table 2: Assessment and Expectations for Order Books
(Percentage responses)
Quarter Total response Assessment Expectations
Increase Decrease No change Net response Increase Decrease No change Net response
Q3:2018-19 1,267 35.3 15.8 48.9 19.5 38.6 9.6 51.8 28.9
Q4:2018-19 1,258 35.3 15.9 48.8 19.5 41.0 8.5 50.5 32.5
Q1:2019-20 1,231 34.1 15.4 50.5 18.8 38.5 8.6 52.8 29.9
Q2:2019-20 481 27.4 30.2 42.5 -2.8 31.6 11.1 57.3 20.5
Q3:2019-20 775 26.9 26.6 46.5 0.3 34.3 20.4 45.3 13.9
Q4:2019-20           33.6 17.0 49.3 16.6
‘Increase’ in order books is optimistic. Footnote ‘@’ given in Table 1 is applicable here.

Table 3: Assessment and Expectations for Pending Orders
(Percentage responses)
Quarter Total response Assessment Expectations
Above Normal Below Normal Normal Net response Above Normal Below Normal Normal Net response
Q3:2018-19 1,267 4.7 13.2 82.1 8.6 7.4 11.0 81.6 3.6
Q4:2018-19 1,258 5.1 14.3 80.6 9.2 6.3 9.9 83.8 3.6
Q1:2019-20 1,231 6.0 15.7 78.3 9.6 6.1 10.4 83.5 4.3
Q2:2019-20 481 4.5 25.5 70.0 21.0 16.1 9.4 74.5 -6.7
Q3:2019-20 775 3.4 25.5 71.1 22.1 3.9 18.3 77.8 14.4
Q4:2019-20           3.7 19.5 76.8 15.9
Pending orders ‘Below Normal’ is optimistic. Footnote ‘@’ given in Table 1 is applicable here.

Table 4: Assessment and Expectations for Capacity Utilisation (Main Product)
(Percentage responses)
Quarter Total response Assessment Expectations
Increase Decrease No change Net response Increase Decrease No change Net response
Q3:2018-19 1,267 24.9 12.3 62.8 12.6 28.3 7.3 64.4 21.0
Q4:2018-19 1,258 26.2 13.3 60.5 12.8 30.3 6.5 63.1 23.8
Q1:2019-20 1,231 22.8 13.4 63.8 9.4 27.2 7.7 65.1 19.6
Q2:2019-20 481 15.9 24.9 59.2 -9.0 23.1 9.2 67.7 13.9
Q3:2019-20 775 17.5 25.8 56.7 -8.3 24.4 20.0 55.6 4.4
Q4:2019-20           23.1 15.2 61.6 7.9
‘Increase’ in capacity utilisation is optimistic. Footnote ‘@’ given in Table 1 is applicable here.

Table 5: Assessment and Expectations for Level of CU (compared to the average in last 4 quarters)
(Percentage responses)
Quarter Total response Assessment Expectations
Above Normal Below Normal Normal Net response Above Normal Below Normal Normal Net response
Q3:2018-19 1,267 10.1 12.9 76.9 -2.8 12.5 9.1 78.4 3.4
Q4:2018-19 1,258 11.6 13.0 75.3 -1.4 12.7 8.6 78.7 4.1
Q1:2019-20 1,231 9.6 14.8 75.7 -5.2 12.2 8.2 79.6 4.0
Q2:2019-20 481 8.1 26.6 65.3 -18.6 9.2 8.8 82.0 0.3
Q3:2019-20 775 6.6 26.9 66.5 -20.3 9.3 21.7 69.0 -12.4
Q4:2019-20           7.9 18.5 73.6 -10.6
‘Above Normal’ in Level of capacity utilisation is optimistic. Footnote ‘@’ given in Table 1 is applicable here.

Table 6: Assessment and Expectations for Assessment of Production Capacity (with regard to expected demand in next 6 months)
(Percentage responses)
Quarter Total response Assessment Expectations
More than adequate Less than adequate Adequate Net response More than adequate Less than adequate Adequate Net response
Q3:2018-19 1,267 10.3 7.2 82.5 3.0 11.9 6.3 81.8 5.6
Q4:2018-19 1,258 11.2 7.4 81.4 3.8 10.6 6.1 83.3 4.5
Q1:2019-20 1,231 11.0 6.7 82.2 4.3 12.2 6.2 81.6 6.0
Q2:2019-20 481 15.1 14.2 70.7 0.9 13.5 6.9 79.6 6.6
Q3:2019-20 775 15.8 11.7 72.5 4.2 15.3 12.4 72.2 2.9
Q4:2019-20           14.6 11.4 74.0 3.2
‘More than adequate’ in Assessment of Production Capacity is optimistic. Footnote ‘@’ given in Table 1 is applicable here.

Table 7: Assessment and Expectations for Exports
(Percentage responses)
Quarter Total response Assessment Expectations
Increase Decrease No change Net response Increase Decrease No change Net response
Q3:2018-19 1,267 25.1 13.0 61.9 12.1 26.1 10.2 63.7 15.9
Q4:2018-19 1,258 25.0 12.0 63.0 13.0 27.8 8.0 64.2 19.8
Q1:2019-20 1,231 24.6 11.5 64.0 13.1 25.7 8.0 66.2 17.7
Q2:2019-20 481 21.3 21.3 57.5 0.0 24.0 8.2 67.8 15.8
Q3:2019-20 775 18.3 19.2 62.5 -0.9 24.3 17.0 58.7 7.3
Q4:2019-20           22.4 13.8 63.9 8.6
‘Increase’ in exports is optimistic. Footnote ‘@’ given in Table 1 is applicable here.

Table 8: Assessment and Expectations for Imports
(Percentage responses)
Quarter Total response Assessment Expectations
Increase Decrease No change Net response Increase Decrease No change Net response
Q3:2018-19 1,267 20.1 8.5 71.4 11.6 19.3 7.1 73.6 12.2
Q4:2018-19 1,258 19.7 8.7 71.6 10.9 21.0 5.3 73.7 15.7
Q1:2019-20 1,231 18.2 8.3 73.4 9.9 19.2 6.2 74.6 13.0
Q2:2019-20 481 16.0 14.5 69.6 1.5 18.4 7.4 74.2 11.1
Q3:2019-20 775 13.2 12.3 74.5 0.9 18.1 11.7 70.2 6.4
Q4:2019-20           15.7 10.2 74.1 5.4
‘Increase’ in imports is optimistic. Footnote ‘@’ given in Table 1 is applicable here.

Table 9: Assessment and Expectations for level of Raw Materials Inventory
(Percentage responses)
Quarter Total response Assessment Expectations
Above average Below average Average Net response Above average Below average Average Net response
Q3:2018-19 1,267 14.3 4.6 81.0 -9.7 11.3 4.6 84.1 -6.7
Q4:2018-19 1,258 14.9 5.5 79.6 -9.5 12.1 4.2 83.8 -7.9
Q1:2019-20 1,231 13.9 5.7 80.4 -8.3 12.0 3.7 84.3 -8.3
Q2:2019-20 481 17.1 8.4 74.5 -8.6 11.8 4.2 84.0 -7.7
Q3:2019-20 775 13.9 7.7 78.4 -6.2 13.2 6.6 80.3 -6.6
Q4:2019-20           10.6 7.0 82.4 -3.6
‘Below average’ Inventory of raw materials is optimistic. Footnote ‘@’ given in Table 1 is applicable here.

Table 10: Assessment and Expectations for level of Finished Goods Inventory
(Percentage responses)
Quarter Total response Assessment Expectations
Above average Below average Average Net response Above average Below average Average Net response
Q3:2018-19 1,267 15.0 4.9 80.1 -10.0 10.8 5.2 83.9 -5.6
Q4:2018-19 1,258 14.4 6.5 79.1 -7.9 11.1 4.6 84.3 -6.5
Q1:2019-20 1,231 13.5 6.7 79.8 -6.8 10.5 4.9 84.6 -5.6
Q2:2019-20 481 22.5 8.0 69.5 -14.5 13.0 6.0 81.0 -7.0
Q3:2019-20 775 18.3 7.3 74.4 -11.0 15.7 5.0 79.3 -10.7
Q4:2019-20           12.9 6.2 80.9 -6.7
‘Below average’ Inventory of finished goods is optimistic. Footnote ‘@’ given in Table 1 is applicable here.

Table 11: Assessment and Expectations for Employment Outlook
(Percentage responses)
Quarter Total response Assessment Expectations
Increase Decrease No change Net response Increase Decrease No change Net response
Q3:2018-19 1,267 16.1 6.7 77.1 9.4 17.1 4.2 78.7 12.9
Q4:2018-19 1,258 16.7 6.9 76.5 9.8 17.0 4.8 78.2 12.2
Q1:2019-20 1,231 15.9 7.3 76.8 8.6 17.1 4.8 78.1 12.3
Q2:2019-20 481 13.4 14.2 72.4 -0.9 16.6 5.7 77.7 10.9
Q3:2019-20 775 12.2 13.8 74.0 -1.6 12.1 11.4 76.5 0.7
Q4:2019-20           12.5 10.7 76.8 1.8
‘Increase’ in employment is optimistic. Footnote ‘@’ given in Table 1 is applicable here.

Table 12: Assessment and Expectations for Overall Financial Situation
(Percentage responses)
Quarter Total response Assessment Expectations
Better Worsen No change Net response Better Worsen No change Net response
Q3:2018-19 1,267 28.5 11.9 59.6 16.5 34.4 7.5 58.0 26.9
Q4:2018-19 1,258 29.3 11.4 59.3 17.8 35.2 6.5 58.3 28.7
Q1:2019-20 1,231 29.7 8.6 61.7 21.1 35.0 5.7 59.3 29.3
Q2:2019-20 481 21.2 22.2 56.6 -1.1 34.3 6.1 59.6 28.3
Q3:2019-20 775 24.6 19.3 56.1 5.3 30.6 14.8 54.7 15.8
Q4:2019-20           31.2 11.7 57.1 19.5
‘Better’ overall financial situation is optimistic. Footnote ‘@’ given in Table 1 is applicable here.

Table 13: Assessment and Expectations for Working Capital Finance Requirement
(Percentage responses)
Quarter Total response Assessment Expectations
Increase Decrease No change Net response Increase Decrease No change Net response
Q3:2018-19 1,267 30.5 5.6 63.9 24.9 30.6 4.0 65.4 26.6
Q4:2018-19 1,258 30.8 4.6 64.6 26.2 29.9 4.4 65.7 25.6
Q1:2019-20 1,231 28.5 5.4 66.1 23.2 29.6 4.1 66.3 25.6
Q2:2019-20 481 28.4 10.7 60.9 17.7 27.7 5.5 66.8 22.1
Q3:2019-20 775 27.4 8.7 63.9 18.7 29.3 5.5 65.3 23.8
Q4:2019-20           27.3 5.7 66.9 21.6
‘Increase’ in working capital finance is optimistic. Footnote ‘@’ given in Table 1 is applicable here.

Table 14: Assessment and Expectations for Availability of Finance (from Internal Accruals)
(Percentage responses)
Quarter Total response Assessment Expectations
Improve Worsen No change Net response Improve Worsen No change Net response
Q3:2018-19 1,267 21.2 10.4 68.4 10.8 24.9 6.7 68.3 18.2
Q4:2018-19 1,258 22.8 7.5 69.6 15.3 25.4 6.2 68.4 19.2
Q1:2019-20 1,231 23.2 7.2 69.6 16.0 25.5 5.0 69.5 20.5
Q2:2019-20 481 19.6 12.7 67.7 6.9 23.0 5.7 71.3 17.3
Q3:2019-20 775 19.0 12.4 68.6 6.6 21.4 8.1 70.5 13.2
Q4:2019-20           22.1 8.8 69.1 13.4
‘Improvement’ in availability of finance is optimistic. Footnote ‘@’ given in Table 1 is applicable here.

Table 15: Assessment and Expectations for Availability of Finance (from banks and other sources)
(Percentage responses)
Quarter Total response Assessment Expectations
Improve Worsen No change Net response Improve Worsen No change Net response
Q3:2018-19 1,267 17.2 6.0 76.8 11.2 19.0 5.9 75.1 13.1
Q4:2018-19 1,258 17.8 7.0 75.2 10.8 20.1 4.1 75.8 16.0
Q1:2019-20 1,231 17.9 6.0 76.1 11.9 19.3 5.0 75.7 14.2
Q2:2019-20 481 14.3 10.0 75.8 4.3 17.4 4.4 78.2 13.0
Q3:2019-20 775 14.6 7.4 78.1 7.2 18.7 6.0 75.3 12.7
Q4:2019-20           17.7 5.9 76.4 11.7
‘Improvement’ in availability of finance is optimistic. Footnote ‘@’ given in Table 1 is applicable here.

Table 16: Assessment and Expectations for Availability of Finance (from overseas, if applicable)
(Percentage responses)
Quarter Total response Assessment Expectations
Improve Worsen No change Net response Improve Worsen No change Net response
Q3:2018-19 1,267 6.9 4.0 89.1 2.9 9.5 4.3 86.2 5.2
Q4:2018-19 1,258 8.6 3.9 87.6 4.7 9.0 3.0 88.0 6.0
Q1:2019-20 1,231 8.2 4.0 87.8 4.3 9.5 3.5 87.0 6.0
Q2:2019-20 481 6.9 4.1 89.1 2.8 13.1 3.5 83.5 9.6
Q3:2019-20 775 7.5 5.0 87.6 2.5 9.2 4.1 86.7 5.1
Q4:2019-20           7.3 4.3 88.4 3.0
‘Improvement’ in availability of finance is optimistic. Footnote ‘@’ given in Table 1 is applicable here.

Table 17: Assessment and Expectations for Cost of Finance
(Percentage responses)
Quarter Total response Assessment Expectations
Increase Decrease No change Net response Increase Decrease No change Net response
Q3:2018-19 1,267 24.9 5.4 69.7 -19.5 24.7 4.9 70.4 -19.8
Q4:2018-19 1,258 21.3 5.6 73.1 -15.7 22.3 4.8 73.0 -17.5
Q1:2019-20 1,231 22.4 4.9 72.7 -17.6 20.2 5.8 74.0 -14.4
Q2:2019-20 481 21.3 8.1 70.6 -13.1 22.5 7.1 70.4 -15.4
Q3:2019-20 775 16.9 8.2 74.9 -8.7 18.5 8.4 73.1 -10.0
Q4:2019-20           15.0 7.1 77.9 -7.9
‘Decrease’ in cost of finance is optimistic. Footnote ‘@’ given in Table 1 is applicable here.

Table 18: Assessment and Expectations for Cost of Raw Materials
(Percentage responses)
Quarter Total response Assessment Expectations
Increase Decrease No change Net response Increase Decrease No change Net response
Q3:2018-19 1,267 53.1 3.9 43.1 -49.2 46.5 1.9 51.6 -44.5
Q4:2018-19 1,258 46.8 4.8 48.4 -41.9 42.1 3.5 54.3 -38.6
Q1:2019-20 1,231 46.4 3.1 50.5 -43.3 37.2 3.5 59.2 -33.7
Q2:2019-20 481 42.4 7.1 50.5 -35.3 31.4 3.8 64.8 -27.6
Q3:2019-20 775 37.2 11.1 51.7 -26.1 37.0 6.2 56.8 -30.8
Q4:2019-20           35.6 5.6 58.8 -30.0
‘Decrease’ in cost of raw materials is optimistic. Footnote ‘@’ given in Table 1 is applicable here.

Table 19: Assessment and Expectations for Salary/Other Remuneration
(Percentage responses)
Quarter Total response Assessment Expectations
Increase Decrease No change Net response Increase Decrease No change Net response
Q3:2018-19 1,267 29.8 1.6 68.6 -28.2 25.6 1.2 73.2 -24.4
Q4:2018-19 1,258 28.5 1.8 69.7 -26.7 22.8 1.4 75.8 -21.4
Q1:2019-20 1,231 38.8 1.6 59.6 -37.2 34.0 1.1 64.9 -32.9
Q2:2019-20 481 38.6 2.6 58.8 -36.0 34.5 0.9 64.6 -33.7
Q3:2019-20 775 38.6 2.6 58.8 -36.0 34.5 0.9 64.6 -33.7
Q4:2019-20           25.0 1.8 73.2 -23.2
‘Decrease’ in Salary / other remuneration is optimistic. Footnote ‘@’ given in Table 1 is applicable here.

Table 20: Assessment and Expectations for Selling Price
(Percentage responses)
Quarter Total response Assessment Expectations
Increase Decrease No change Net response Increase Decrease No change Net response
Q3:2018-19 1,267 19.9 13.7 66.4 6.2 21.0 6.7 72.3 14.3
Q4:2018-19 1,258 17.5 13.1 69.3 4.4 19.4 7.1 73.5 12.3
Q1:2019-20 1,231 17.1 10.5 72.4 6.6 19.5 8.5 72.0 11.0
Q2:2019-20 481 13.8 21.4 64.8 -7.6 15.5 8.4 76.1 7.1
Q3:2019-20 775 12.0 21.6 66.4 -9.6 18.6 14.0 67.3 4.6
Q4:2019-20           15.2 13.0 71.9 2.2
‘Increase’ in selling price is optimistic. Footnote ‘@’ given in Table 1 is applicable here.

Table 21: Assessment and Expectations for Profit Margin
(Percentage responses)
Quarter Total response Assessment Expectations
Increase Decrease No change Net response Increase Decrease No change Net response
Q3:2018-19 1,267 16.1 27.8 56.1 -11.7 17.1 17.0 65.9 0.1
Q4:2018-19 1,258 16.2 25.5 58.3 -9.3 18.7 16.7 64.5 2.0
Q1:2019-20 1,231 16.1 24.1 59.8 -8.0 17.8 17.0 65.1 0.8
Q2:2019-20 481 13.5 36.1 50.4 -22.6 21.9 14.5 63.6 7.4
Q3:2019-20 775 12.3 34.4 53.3 -22.1 17.6 26.1 56.3 -8.5
Q4:2019-20           16.3 26.4 57.3 -10.2
‘Increase’ in profit margin is optimistic. Footnote ‘@’ given in Table 1 is applicable here.

Table 22: Assessment and Expectations for Overall Business Situation
(Percentage responses)
Quarter Total response Assessment Expectations
Better Worsen No change Net response Better Worsen No change Net response
Q3:2018-19 1,267 34.9 10.3 54.8 24.6 43.3 7.0 49.8 36.3
Q4:2018-19 1,258 33.9 11.5 54.7 22.4 43.2 6.5 50.3 36.7
Q1:2019-20 1,231 35.1 10.5 54.4 24.6 42.5 5.6 51.9 36.9
Q2:2019-20 481 24.5 25.4 50.1 -0.8 41.1 6.0 52.9 35.2
Q3:2019-20 775 26.4 22.9 50.8 3.5 37.3 15.6 47.1 21.7
Q4:2019-20           35.8 13.2 50.9 22.6
‘Better’ Overall Business Situation is optimistic. Footnote ‘@’ given in Table 1 is applicable here.

Table 23: Business Sentiments
Quarter Business Assessment Index (BAI) Business Expectations Index (BEI)
Q3:2018-19 107.1 115.0
Q4:2018-19 107.2 116.2
Q1:2019-20 108.4 113.5
Q2:2019-20 92.5 112.8
Q3:2019-20 93.0 102.2
Q4:2019-20   105.0

1 The survey results reflect the views of the respondents, which are not necessarily shared by the Reserve Bank of India. The results of the 87th round of the survey (Q2:2019-20) were released on October 4, 2019 on the RBI’s website.

2 For each of the survey round, two indices are computed - one based on assessment [viz., Business Assessment Index (BAI)] and another based on expectations [viz., Business Expectations Index (BEI)]. Each indicator for is calculated as a weighted net response of nine business indicators, weights being the share of industry groups in GVA. The nine indicators considered are: (1) overall business situation; (2) production; (3) order books; (4) inventory of raw material; (5) inventory of finished goods; (6) profit margins; (7) employment; (8) exports; and (9) capacity utilisation. BAI/BEI gives a snapshot of the business outlook in every quarter and takes values between 0 and 200, with 100 being the threshold separating expansion from contraction.

3 Net Response (NR) is the difference in percentage of the respondents reporting optimism and that reporting pessimism. The range is -100 to 100. Any value greater than zero indicates expansion/optimism and any value less than zero indicates contraction/pessimism. NR = (I – D), where, I is the percentage response of ‘Increase/optimism’, and D is the percentage response of ‘Decrease/pessimism’ and E is the percentage response as ‘no change/Equal’; I+D+E=100.  For example, increase in production is optimism whereas decrease in cost of raw material is optimism.


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