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Gold imports rise 19.5% to $34.32 bn in FY15

Gold imports surged 19.5 per cent to reach $34.32 billion in 2014-15 due to declining prices and easing of restrictions by the Reserve Bank. Imports of the metal were $28.7 billion the previous fiscal, 2013-14.
Increase in gold imports impacts the country’s trade deficit, which has reached $137 billion in 2014-15, and the current account deficit (CAD). The imports almost doubled in March to $4.98 billion which pushed the trade deficit to a four-month high of $11.79 billion for the month, according to the Commerce Ministry data. India is the largest importer of gold, which mainly caters to the demand of the jewellery industry.

The Reserve Bank and the government have maintained that the CAD level is comfortable, but the spike in gold imports may spark fresh worries. It has narrowed to 1.7 per cent for the first nine months of the previous fiscal. According to the Reserve Bank data, in the April-December period of last fiscal, CAD stood at $31.1 billion or 2.3 percent of GDP. On November 28, RBI had scrapped the controversial 80:20 scheme. 

April MF equity inflows hit 7-yr high of `7,600-cr
Mutual fund managers pumped in over Rs 7,600 crore in equity markets in April, making it their highest net inflow in more than seven years, mainly on account of positive investor sentiments and the government’s reforms agenda. In comparison, they pulled out Rs 2,698 crore from the stock markets in April 2014. According to the latest Sebi data, mutual fund (MF) managers invested a net sum of Rs 7,618 crore in April this year. This was the highest net inflow in equities since January 2008, when fund managers poured in Rs 7,703 crore. 
Besides, fund managers invested a net amount of Rs 28,650 crore in debt markets last month.  PTI
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