News in numbers, Dec 1, 2015: India’s Q2 GDP growth, pending patent applications…

 

7.4%

 

What is it? Rate at which the Indian economy grew in the July-September quarter of 2015-16.

 

Why is it important? It was 7% in the April-June quarter. It is buoyed by a 9.3% growth in manufacturing and a 6.7% increase in electricity in the September quarter. This provides a boost to the Indian government, which is trying to revive stalled projects, attract foreign investments to bring back momentum to economic recovery. Some believe the GDP numbers may prompt the Reserve Bank of India to maintain key interest rates in its fifth bimonthly monetary policy on Tuesday.

 

Tell me more: Despite a 15% drop in monsoon rains, farm output grew at 2.2% in the second quarter of 2015-16 compared to 1.9% growth in the previous quarter.

 

2.5 lakh

 

What is it? Number of patent applications pending due to shortage of manpower, according to Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in the Parliament on Monday.

 

Why is it important? As it is, India scores poorly on patents. The number of patents granted per million population (under the Patent Cooperation Treaty) is 1.5 for India compared to China’s 11.7, USA’s 149.8 and South Korea’s 201.5. The backlog is likely to shrink. The government is in the process of filling 459 vacant posts of examiners of patents and designs and has created 263 contractual posts to fill in for the same.

 

Tell me more: The Patent Cooperation Treaty provides a unified patent filing process and helps applicants in seeking protection internationally for their inventions.

 

6.67%

 

What is it? Share of higher educational institutions in India that have women in leadership positions, according to a report.

 

Why is it important? Shows that India has a long way to go in terms of gender parity. This percentage number compares poorly with the equivalent numbers for Australia (21%), US (18%) and the UK (17%).

 

Tell me more: Across all the seven All India Institutes of Medical Sciences, 31 National Institutes of Technology and six Indian Institutes of Science Education & Research, only the NIT-Puducherry has a woman director. The report, prepared by management consulting firm EduShine Advisory Group looked at all higher educational institutions including central, state, deemed varsities, and institutes of national importance.

 

5

 

What is it? Number of currencies that will be in the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) basket of reserve currencies, with the inclusion of China’s Yuan on October 1, 2016.

 

Why is it important? This means the yuan would be more widely used in international transactions and with this, it may become cheaper for China to borrow money and it may help stabilise its currency. Analysts say this could also mean that the global economy would be much more exposed to the Chinese economy. The other reserve currencies in the basket are the US dollar, the euro, the yen and the pound.

 

Tell me more: The last change to the basket of reserve currencies was made in 2000 when the euro replaced the German mark and the franc.

 

$200 million

 

What is it? Reported deal size of online classifieds platform Quikr acquiring real estate portal CommonFloor.com, though neither of the two have confirmed the development.

 

Why is it important? Once confirmed, this would be the first large consolidation deal in the online property selling space. With this deal, Quikr would be able to strengthen its newly launched vertical, QuikrHomes, an online real estate portal.

 
Tell me more: This November, Quikr announced that it had acquired Indian Realty Exchange, a real estate agent aggregator, for an undisclosed amount.

 

 

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