Nomura India Business Resumption Index regains its mojo after fatigue in
the past two weeks.
The Nomura India Business Resumption Index (NIBRI) rose to a record high of 99.4 for the week ending 8 August, from 94.0 last week, near the pre-pandemic level of 100, and surpassing the pre-second wave peak (of 99.3 in mid- February).
After briefly plateauing, mobility picked up sharply, with Google workplace, retail & recreation and Apple driving index rising by 7.4pp, 5.3pp and 6.7pp, respectively. Power demand also
rose 5.3% w-o-w (sa) after contracting for three consecutive weeks, while the labour participation rate rose to 41.5% from 39.8% previously, pushing up the unemployment rate to 8.1%.
Pandemic cases remain flat at ~40,000 per day, and at close to 5mn doses/day, the vaccination pace is higher than the daily rate of 3.9mn in June. However, there are state-wide divergences, on the seroprevalence rate, infection cases, vaccinations and the lockdown situation.
Some states are doubling down on restrictions (like Karnataka and Tamil Nadu), while others like Maharashtra are easing further.
Overall, the latest rise in the NIBRI corrects its plateauing since mid-July, and suggests the swifter-than-expected recovery from the second wave slump has continued in early August. Whether the surge in mobility, in turn, triggers a third wave is a key risk that we continue to monitor.
Note: The NIBRI comprises Google mobility indices, driving mobility from Apple, power demand and the labour force participation rate. Google mobility and Apple driving indices are
based on a 7-day moving average. We consider 23 Feb 2020 as the base for all the series and subsequent data entries have been indexed to it. The readings account for the latest
data for Google mobility indices, which are available with a lag of roughly one week compared to the other indicators. The latest readings of NIBRI are provisional estimates. .
Source: Google, Apple, CMIE, Bloomberg and Nomura Global Economics