India’s Oct industrial output rises at fastest pace for 16 months

NEW DELHI (Reuters) -India’s industrial output rose 11.7% year-on-year in October, the fastest pace in 16 months and beating expectations, data from the Ministry of Statistics showed on Tuesday, driven by strong festive demand for electricity and durable goods.

Analysts in a Reuters poll had forecast growth of 10%.

India’s months long festive season peaks during Diwali, the festival of lights, which was celebrated on Nov. 12.

Manufacturing output in October rose 10.4% year-on-year, electricity generation was up 20.4% and mining activities increased 13.1%, the data showed.

Infrastructure goods and capital goods grew 11.3% and 22.6%, respectively. Consumer durables – goods that don’t wear out quickly – rose 15.9% in October, against an 18.1% contraction in the same month last year.

Aditi Nayar, an economist at ICRA, noted consumer durables and non-durables lagged their October 2021 levels, suggesting some caution around the data.

“ICRA expects the year-on-year industrial output growth to slow down sharply to 2-4% in Nov 2023, driven by the fewer number of working days amid the late onset of the festive season in 2023 vis-à-vis 2022, as well as an unfavourable base,” Nayar added.

Industrial output in the first seven months of the fiscal year that started in April was up 6.9% from the same period a year ago.

(Reporting by Shivangi AcharyaEditing by Mark Potter)