Finance & Economy
  • On India's high savings rate:
    • India's high savings rate has been a crucial driver of its economic boom, providing productive capital and helping to fuel a virtuous cycle of higher growth, higher income and higher savings. India's savings stood at a whopping Rs. 9.85 trillion (US $192 bn) as at the end of 2006-07.  Since the 1990s, the gross domestic savings rate has risen steadily from an average of 23% to an estimated high of 35% in the 2006/07 fiscal year (April-March). The latter rate compares very favourably not only with developed economies (the US and the UK have savings rates of around 14%), but also with other emerging economies—with a few exceptions such as Malaysia (38%) and Chile (35%).
    • India's household sector (including some small businesses) continues to account for the lion's share—some 70%—of savings. 
    • Can you identify the reasons for the savings buoyancy in India?  Normally, a growing economy is expected to induce more spending and less of savings.  But in Indian context, this has not happened.  What can possibly explain this?
      • One reason for this is the woeful inadequacy of India's social-security system. Only around 10% of India's working population is covered by a retirement-benefit scheme. With increased urban migration, the joint family system (where several generations live together) is declining, reducing traditional old-age support from families. Health-insurance coverage is very low. 
      • Many Indians remain averse to taking loans. Personal savings remain vital to meet long-term needs such as home buying, children's education, retirement and healthcare.
  • Want to understand how shipping business is a leading indicator for global economic trends?
    • Ships travel to and from the manufacturing and trading hubs.  If ships float high on water, it means that they are carrying less or even no cargo.  If there is less cargo moving around the world, it results in dramatically lower rates for hiring large ships, and so a growing crisis in world shipping.
    • All this points to a slowing world economy.  That's how shipping is a leading indicator for the world economy.
  • Big earthquake in Italy
    • Several people are reported to have been killed in a powerful earthquake in central Italy.
    • The magnitude 6.3 earthquake struck about 95km north-east of the capital, Rome, at a depth of 10km.
    • Two smaller earthquakes struck the same region of Italy on Sunday but caused no damage.
    • Powerful earthquakes are relatively rare in Italy. In 2002, an earthquake in the southern Italian town of San Giuliano di Puglia killed more than 20 people.
    • In 1997, 13 people died when a strong earthquake struck Italy's central region.
  • How scratching stops an itch?
    • Scientists have shown scratching helps relieve an itch as it blocks activity in some spinal cord nerve cells that transmit the sensation to the brain.
    • Research has suggested that a specific part of the spinal cord - the spinothalamic tract - plays a key role.  Nerve cells in this area have been shown to be more active when itchy substances are applied to the skin.
  • Andy Murray wins Sony Ericsson Open in Miami, US
    • Andy Murray captured arguably the biggest title of his career to date with a straight-sets defeat of Novak Djokovic at the Sony Ericsson Open.
    • The British number one beat third seed Djokovic 6-2 7-5 in Miami for his third Masters title, following wins in Cincinnati and Madrid last year.
    • After dominating the first set in searing heat, Murray fought back from 5-2 down to clinch the second.


Ash said...

sir the relationship between ships and economy still remains unclear to me.... your explanation sounds more like an explanation of 'the principle of Floatation'.....
Pardon me if im wrong !

Rajashekar said...

Sir! I could not understand the relationship between ships and economy.Please explain. I first thought on lines of "law of floatation" and could not proceed further.