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The Sales Managers Index: India

Released: January 21 , 2016

India’s economy continues to grow rapidly

  • Rapid growth in manufacturing and services sectors
  • Business confidence remains very high
  • Employment growth at fastest rate since survey began

The World Economics Headline Sales Managers’ Index (SMI) for India – an indicator designed to provide the most up-to-date monthly assessment of economic activity in the country – posted 69.7 in January. This reflects rapid growth in economic activity across the country.

Sector data analysis shows that both Manufacturing and Services SMI’s remained at very high levels in January. These index values showed rapid and balanced growth for both sectors of the economy, with the services sector remaining the bigger driving force of the general economic expansion.

Business expectations regarding the short-term outlook for activity weakened in January but remained very high overall. The Business Confidence Index registered 91.0 as panellists expect greater sales and market growth in the next months.

Furthermore, the Market Growth Index, which reflects growth of the general marketplace in panellists’ own industry sectors showed strong growth. Likewise, the Product Sales Index, which represents sales made by panellists’ own companies was indicative of very fast levels of sales growth.

Prices charged rose for the first time since March 2015 in January, ending a nine-month sequence of deflation. The Prices Charged Index rose to 50.6 from 49.4 in December, with panellists citing the weakness of the rupee vs. the dollar as the key factor behind the slight increase in prices.

Employment levels rose further during January to a record high. The current sequence of employment growth now extends to six months, with the Staffing Index posting the fastest rate since the survey began in January 2012.

World Economics Chief Executive Ed Jones commented:

“Indian economic growth continued to expand rapidly in January. SMI data have now shown consistently fast growth for a lengthy period of time. Sales managers are further increasing their payroll numbers which suggests that the official rate of GDP growth will remain strong over the coming months.”


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The Sales Managers’ Index results are calculated by taking the percentage of respondents that report that the 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.

About the Sales Managers’ Indexes 
The Sales Managers’ Indexes are a series of new products available for Africa, Asia and the Americas, designed to raise the voice and profile of sales people throughout the world. The Sales Managers’ Indexes provide the earliest indication each and every month of the direction of economic activity, and the speed at which its markets are growing.

Sales Managers are unique as an occupational group in being really at the front line of economic activity. The Sales Manager is ideally placed to feel the first few whispers of caution in the market or to see the new green shoots of economic recovery.

The Sales Managers’ Index brings together the collective wisdom of Sales Managers and consequently produces the best and earliest source of understanding about what’s really happening in the Chinese economy.

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

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.

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.
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