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The Sales Managers Index: India

Released: April 21 , 2016

Indian economy continues to gain momentum in April

  • Market growth remains strong while sales rise further
  • Prices ease to subdued levels amid lower fuel costs
  • Workforce numbers at fastest rate since survey began

The Indian economy continued to build momentum during April. At 68.3, up from 68.1 in March, the Headline Sales Managers’ Index (SMI) for India – a composite indicator designed to provide the most up-to-date monthly assessment of economic activity across all private sectors of the economy – signalled a slightly faster rate of growth. Furthermore, the headline index remained well above its long-term series average of 62.6 and has continually registered above the 50.0 no-change mark since records started in February 2012.

Business sentiment picked up in April, with the Business Confidence Index up marginally from the prior month. Positive sentiment was linked to expectations of improving business conditions, higher sales and company expansions.

The Market Growth Index, which reflects growth of the general marketplace in panellists’ own industry sectors, remained strong during April despite easing for the sixth consecutive month. At the same time, the Product Sales Index, which represents sales made by panellists’ own companies, increased to a four-month high in April, with panellists commenting on improved client demand conditions.

On the prices front, the Prices Charged Index registered above the 50.0 no-change mark for the fourth month running in April. The latest reading, nevertheless indicated subdued levels of price inflation reflecting reduced rates of fuel costs.

Moreover, April data highlighted another increase in employment levels, with the Staffing Index signalling the fastest rate since the survey began in January 2012. The continued improvements in workforce numbers can be mainly attributed to the general strengthening in market conditions.

World Economics Chief Executive Ed Jones commented on the release:

“The latest SMI survey data for India pointed to a slightly higher rate of economic activity in April. Although market growth registered a softer rate of increase, product sales picked up, reversing the slight deceleration seen in the previous month. In addition, job levels rose further as sales managers remained optimistic about future business activity. Meanwhile, prices charged were still muted. Overall, the latest data showed continued rapid levels of growth across India.”


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Notes to Editors
The SMI’s (Sales Managers’ Indexes) are compiled and analysed by World Economics and are based on survey data collected from a panel of US companies balanced by the all Industry Classification Board (ICB) sectors which are weighted to reflect their contribution to national Gross Domestic Product.

The Sales Managers’ Index results are calculated as
diffusion index which have the characteristics of leading indicators by taking the percentage of respondents that report that activity has risen (“Increasing") and adding it to one-half of the percentage that report the activity has not changed (“Unchanged"). Using half of the “Unchanged" percentage effectively measures the bias toward a positive (above 50 points) or negative (below 50 points) index. An example of how to calculate a diffusion index: if the response is 40% “Increasing," 40% “Unchanged," and 20% “Reducing," the Diffusion Index would be 60 points (40% + [0.50 x 40%]). A value of 50 indicates "no change" from the previous month.

The more distant the index is from the amount that would indicate "no change" (50 points), the greater the rate of change indicated. Therefore, an index value of 58 indicates a faster rate of increase than an index value of 53, and an index value of 40 indicates a faster rate of decrease than an index value of 45. A value of 100 indicates all respondents are reporting increased activity while 0 indicates that all respondents report decreased activity.

Three month Moving Averages are applied to each index to mitigate the effect of seasonal variations, original un-adjusted data are not revised after publication.

About the Sales Managers’ Indexes

The Sales Managers’ Index has been developed by World Economics, a leading edge provider of original economic data. Sister products include the World Price Index, Global Marketing Index, World Economics Journal, as well as country level Growth Trackers. 

The Sales Managers' Index provide the earliest monthly data on the speed and direction of US economic activity.

Key advantages of the US SMI:
  •   The SMI provides the first indication each month of the speed and direction of economic growth.   
  •   The SMI provides the most complete indication of growth, covering all private sector activity.
  •   The SMI is based on a key occupational group - sales executives - uniquely able to sense accurate changes in business activity levels.

  •  The SMI survey base - salespeople - are used by virtually all businesses, unlike other occupational groups.

  •   The SMI's focus on the world’s growth areas – providing comparative data for Asia, the America's and Africa.

About World Economics
World Economics is an organisation dedicated to producing analysis, insight and data relating to questions of importance in understanding the world economy. Its parent company Information Sciences Ltd has a long history of the development of key business information today used throughout the world, including the origination of the Purchasing Managers Indexes in Europe and Asia (now owned by Markit), and the development of WARC a global information provider for major corporations.

Currently our primary research objective is to encourage and assist the development of better and faster measures of economic activity. In cases where we believe we can contribute directly, as opposed to through highlighting the work of others, we are producing our own measures of economic activity.

Our work is mainly of interest to investors, organisations and individuals in the financial sector and to significant corporations with global operations, as well as governments and academic economists.

About the Sales Managers’ Indexes
About the Sales Managers’ Indexes
About the Sales Managers’ Indexes
About the Sales Managers’ Indexes
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