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Industrial Production Grows Faster Than Expected in India

India’s industrial output rose more than economists estimated in January following policy changes by the government to bolster an economy expanding at the weakest pace in a decade.

Production at factories, utilities and mines climbed 2.4 percent from a year earlier after a revised 0.5 percent drop in December, the Central Statistical Office said in a statement in New Delhitoday. The median of 28 estimates in a Bloomberg News survey was for a gain of 1.3 percent.

The government in last month’s budget said it will trim the fiscal deficit to a six-year low, seeking to reduce inflation risks and boost the central bank’s scope to cut interest rates. Wholesale prices probably increased at the slowest pace in more than three years in February, the median estimate in a Bloomberg survey shows before a report due March 14.

“Amidst expectations of a stretched and gradual demand revival, a sharp upswing in output is unlikely,” Tirthankar Patnaik, a Mumbai-based strategist at Religare Capital Markets Ltd., said before the release. The central bank will probably lower borrowing costs at next week’s policy meeting, he said….”

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