Free Press Journal
  • Arun Jaitley

    Fiscal deficit: Avoiding fundamentalism

    At the macro level, an economy has four drivers of growth. Think of these as a four-wheel drive. If all are in sync and revved up properly then we get good speed i.e. growth of the economy. These four drivers are the sources of demand, or spending on goods and services. These are private consumption…

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  • The unfinished business of tax reform

    India’s modern tax reform agenda was defined by the reports of two celebrated task forces, both chaired by Vijay Kelkar. This was during the previous NDA regime of Prime Minister Vajpayee. Those two reports, on direct and indirect taxes, are still refreshingly relevant. The main thrust of the reforms was to have low tax rates,…

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  • Philanthropy, inequality and taxes

    India celebrates 26 November as Constitution Day. On this day in 1949, the Constituent Assembly adopted the final draft of the constitution, which was formally adopted two months later, on 26 January 1950.  The Assembly was formed in 1946 with 389 elected members (later reduced to 299 in 1947), and deliberated for almost three years,…

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  • Bank recap needs further reforms

    The ratio of non-performing loans to total credit for all of India’s banking, has been steadily deteriorating for at least six years. There are many reasons, and not all of them are blameworthy. For instance, when banks were asked to provide large scale credit for infrastructure projects, it was partly due to pressure from national…

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  • Too much inequality hurts growth

    President Donald Trump’s proposed tax reform is supposed to be the largest tax cut in history. It reduces the highest marginal income tax rate as also the corporate tax rate. It eliminates estate taxes. However, the benefits will flow disproportionately more to the rich. The Tax Policy Centre of America estimates that the tax cuts…

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  • economic growth

    Fiscal recipe to revive economic growth

    The most important thing is to acknowledge the economic slowdown. For the past six quarters, the growth rate has steadily gone down from 9.2 per cent to 5.7 per cent. Investment as a share of GDP, the kind that creates new businesses and factories, has been declining for five years. Job creation may not be…

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  • No silver bullet for stopping economy

    Quarterly GDP growth declined for the sixth consecutive quarter, ending June 2017. Starting with the quarter ending March 2016 last year, the growth rates have been 9., 7.9, 7.5, 7.0, 6.1 and now 5.7 for the latest June ending quarter. This is one of the longest continuing declining trend in the recent times. No doubt…

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  • Doubts and debates on demonetisation

    The cost of printing new notes, the unpreparedness of the banking system, the delay in restocking branches and ATMs, the long waiting lines for months, the inability of people to access their own money – all these costs were immediate and significant for the economy and the people. The slowdown in GDP growth for the…

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  • Signals from the Infosys shake-up

    Infosys was born thirty-seven years ago, just when the IBM PC was launched, and shortly before Apple launched the Mac. The birth of Infosys is the stuff of legend, as its seven penniless founders, set out to build a global company in 1981. And indeed by 1999, at the height of the dot-com era, Infosys…

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  • policy rate cut

    Depositors worried of further rate cuts

    Last week’s decision of the Monetary Policy Committee was keenly awaited. Would they cut the Reserve Bank of India’s policy rate by 25 or 50 basis points? (One basis point is one hundredth of one percent). This is called the repo rate, at which banks borrow emergency funds from the RBI against some collateral. It…

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