Never doubted new GDP numbers, says Raghuram Rajan

30 Jan 2016

NEW DELHI: A day after stating that “there are problems with the way we count GDP” RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan today said he has never raised doubts over the GDP numbers and they are broadly correct.


“It was not anything about new GDP numbers or the way GDP is calculated. I think it’s broadly correct” Rajan said while delivering the C D Deshmukh Memorial Lecture here.
Observing that there are “no hidden messages” in his lectures he said: “You do not have to gauge intent. I am direct when I speak”.
These comments follow another lecture Rajan gave yesterday in Mumbai before the students of the RBI­promoted Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research wherein he had said “There are problems with the way we count GDP which is why we need to be careful sometimes just talking about growth.”
In another development Rajan invoked ‘dosa economics’ to explain that pensioners are better off in the regime of falling inflation. Delivering the C D Deshmukh memorial lecture here he said that a pensioner would be able to buy more number of dosas from lower interest income provided the inflation remained under control.
“…while I sympathise with pensioners they certainly are better off today than in the past” Rajan said. Elaborating his point the RBI chief said a pensioner would be able to buy less number of dosas if the interest rate as well as the inflation remains high.
However pensioner’s ability to buy dosas would increase with fall in inflation as it would also protect the purchasing power of the principal amount invested in bank deposits or other debt instrument.
Pensioners oppose lowering of interest rates as it directly hit their income.
Rajan has been trying to keep the retail inflation under check despite pressure from the Finance Ministry and the industry to cut interest rate to boost growth.
He will be coming out with the next bi­monthly monetary policy on February 2.
Published in: The Economic Times, January 30, 2016