THE BUZZ RETURNS
Business Today|October 31, 2021
There has been marked improvement in business sentiment as corporate leaders have overcome Covid-19 woes, finds the latest quarter’s Business Today Business Confidence Index. Industry is upbeat about the future and expects improvement in the overall economic situation
MANU KAUSHIK

45 PER CENT of respondents expect a boost in economic activity and employment from the Centre’s asset monetisation plan

TIME CHANGES FAST in the corporate world. In June, business confidence was at its lowest in two years, but about three months later, the sentiment has moved up to its highest level in 10 quarters. What has changed in just a quarter to justify this swing? Leading economists say a lot of factors have contributed to the sharp rise in Business Today’s latest BCI (Business Confidence Index). On a scale of 100, for instance, BCI jumped to 49.6 in the September quarter, compared to 43.2 in the June quarter. Given that the latest BCI is at a 10-quarter high, it is a strong indicator of buoyancy in the confidence levels of business leaders. Market research agency C fore quizzed 500 CEOs and chief financial officers across 12 cities for the survey.

“Covid-19-related uncertainties have receded materially during the quarter ending September. That has been the key source of optimism for businesses, especially as against a particularly harsh situation in the previous quarter. On the ground, a number of high-frequency indicators, including PMI [Purchasing Managers’ Index], tax compliance, consumer sentiment, and spending have improved ahead of the festival season. Better credit availability and buoyant financial markets might have fed into the positive sentiment as well,” says Siddhartha Sanyal, Chief Economist, and Head-Research, Bandhan Bank.

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