News in Numbers, Aug 3, 2016: Share of diesel variants in cars, NGOs’ foreign funding…

🚘 Will you buy a diesel car today?

The reasons to buy a diesel car are coming down day after day. The percentage of diesel variants in new cars is just one in four now, from one in two a few years ago. This is just one of the five interesting numbers we picked for you today.

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Have a look at them, and please do share this post to your friends. Here’s the link to subscribe.

26%

What is it? The share of diesel variants in new cars in India as of May 2016

Why is it important? This is down from 52% four years ago. The decline is due to rise in diesel prices on the back of government cutting fuel subsidies. In June 2012, diesel price in Delhi was 41.28 per litre or Rs 26.50 lower than petrol prices. Now it’s Rs 54.3/litre, just Rs 6.84 lower.

Tell me more: In Delhi, diesel car sales have dropped significantly after National Green Tribunal said cars over ten years will be deregistered.

4 million

What is it? The number of tax arrears cases – where the due amount is less than Rs 5000 – likely to be waived off.

Why is it important? An application of the Pareto Principle, which says large effects come from a few causes. Writing these amounts off would help Income Tax department focus on large defaulters where the amount that can be recovered would be larger, and the probability of recovery would be higher.

Tell me more: Of the 4 million cases, 1.8 million cases have arrears of less than Rs 100, and the rest between Rs 101 and Rs 5000.

Rs 22,137 crore

What is it? Foreign contribution received by 3,068 non-governmental organisations (NGOs) in 2014-15.

Why is it important? This represents 83% increase in foreign funding for NGOs that received Rs 1 crore or more. In 2013-14, the increase was a modest 17%. As part of the plan to monitor foreign funding of NGOs more closely, Government cancelled registrations of more than 10,000 NGOs that did not file annual returns.

Tell me more: Six states – Delhi, Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka – received 75% of the total amount in 2014-15.

8.5%

What is it? The drop in share price of Bharat Financial, formerly known as SKS Microfinance, after the company’s president S Dilli Raj was arrested by financial crimes investigators.

Why is it important? The company is among the biggest players in microfinance industry with claimed membership of 7 million, and Dilli Raj was the second-in-command. Bharat Financial claims the arrest was not related to the present company. It was based on a case filed by IDBI Bank against First Leasing Company of India, where Dilli Raj worked till January 2008.  First Leasing’s ex-MD Farouk M Irani was arrested in June this yearunder the same case.

Tell me more: Bharat Financial survived turbulent times when Andhra Pradesh government enacted a tough law to regulate micro lending in 2010. This law effectively meant most lending by microfinance firms couldn’t be collected from borrowers.

6

What is it? The number of hours West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee had to wait before her turn came to speak at an inter-state council meeting in Delhi on July 16

Why is it important? West Bengal comes right at the end, if the state names are arranged alphabetically. Ms Banerjee was reportedly prompted by this to rename the state ‘Bengal’ in English and ‘Bangla or Banga’ in Bengali. The change would help it move to fourth position. The state cabinet cleared a proposal to this effect on Tuesday. However, it needs to be cleared by both houses of parliament in Delhi.

Tell me more:  This is the not the first time West Bengal proposed a name change. Earlier, it wanted the to be called Paschim Banga. The central government didn’t approve.

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News in Numbers, May 16, 2016: Google’s likely antitrust fine, polling across three states…

€3 billion

What is it? The antitrust fine amount Google is reportedly to be served with, by the European Commission in the near future.

Why is it important? If true, this would be the highest antitrust fine imposed on any company, surpassing a €1.1 billion fine on chip-maker Intel in 2009. The world’s largest search engine has been accused of promoting its shopping service in Internet searches, harming its rival services. This is likely to force Google to stop manipulating its search results, a case which has gone on since 2010 in the European Union.

Tell me more: The fine is expected to be announced in June and could go up to €6.6 billion, one-tenth of Google’s annual sales.

5,000

What is it? The number of jobs affected in the automobile sector due to the ban on diesel cars and SUVs with engine capacity of 2,000 cc and above in the Delhi-NCR area, according to an industry body.

Why is it important? The Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers has contended that there is no link between engine capacity and emission levels and automakers such as Mercedes Benz have argued that their vehicles are BS VI-compliant and that diesel does not pollute the air anymore than petrol. Some have called for phased reduction, which might also give more time for transition for workers. However, Supreme Court appears to be entertaining no further debate on the issue.

Tell me more: Due to this ban between December 16, 2015 and April 30, 2016, production of 11,000 vehicles has been affected and a countrywide ban during the same period would have impacted 47,000 jobs and resulted in a loss of production of 1 lakh vehicles.

402

What is it? The total number of constituencies where polling is happening across Tamil Nadu (232 of 234), Kerala (140) and Puducherry (30).

Why is it important? In Tamil Nadu, which has always elected a clear winner for nearly 50 years, the fight is between J Jayalalithaa’s AIADMK and M Karunanidhi’s DMK, it remains to be seen if the combine of a few regional parties including Vijayakanth’s DMDK is able to make a mark to result in vote-splitting. In Kerala, the ruling UDF and the LDF are battling it out. In both these states, BJP’s vote share would be keenly watched as a measure of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s popularity, who campaigned in both the states.

Tell me more: In the southern union territory of Puducherry, two Congress parties are up in arms against each other – one, led by Sonia Gandhi and the other, a breakaway faction led by chief minister N Rangasamy.

6 days

What is it? The delay in the onset of Indian monsoons this year, which is now expected to hit the Kerala coast on June 7.

Why is it important? After two consecutive years of drought and with a quarter of India’s population reeling under its effects, India’s monsoon this year is highly anticipated. The monsoon accounts for over 70% of India’s annual rainfall, is the primary source of irrigation for half of the country’s cropland and refills over 80 nationally-monitored water reservoirs (important for drinking purposes, power and irrigation). The delay is unlikely to affect the sowing of the Kharif crops.

Tell me more: Monsoon usually arrives on June 1 and the India Meteorological Department’s forecast has a margin of error of four days.

0.616

What is it? The number of seconds by which Dutch teenager Max Verstappen beat Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen in Sunday’s Spanish Grand Prix.

Why is it important? With this win, 18-year-old Verstappen became the youngest winner of a Formula One race, beating four-times world champion Sebastian Vettel’s victory in 2008 at the age of 21. He is also the first Dutch race winner since the championship began in 1950.

Tell me more: Dominant players Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg collided and crashed out in the opening lap. Verstappen made his F1 debut when he was 17 for Toro Rosso, one of the two F1 teams owned by Austrian beverage company Red Bull, after which the minimum entry age was changed to 18 years.

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News in Numbers, May 4, 2016: Inequality in India, share of diesel vehicles drops…

51

What is it? India’s net Gini coefficient in 2013. Net Gini coefficient measures income inequality. Zero would mean everyone earns same income, and 100 would mean one person earns all the income.

Why is it important? India’s net Gini coefficient has increased from 45 in 1990, when the economic reforms kickstarted. This indicates the reforms helped some people more than the others, with unequal distribution of wealth, mainly driven by ‘inequality within urban areas, as well as by the urban-rural gap”

Tell me more: Till 1990, Korea, China and Singapore were called ‘miracle economies’ as rapid growth led to equitable income distribution. This pulled people out of poverty in large numbers.

39

What is it? The number of educational loans sanctioned for students registered with Vidya Lakshmi Portal in the nine months since it was launched in August 2015. Number of students registered are 862.

Why is it important? The numbers represent a tiny fraction of educational loan disbursed by banks. Indicates lack of awareness among students to avail this facility and reluctance among banks to disburse educational loans. Of Rs 66,858 crore of educational loans, 5.88% had turned bad as of December 2015,.

Tell me more: Students can apply to multiple banks by filing up a single form in Vidya Lakshmi Portal, an initiative by the Finance Ministry. 37 banks are registered as of now.

44%

What is it? The share of diesel vehicles in total car sales in twelve months ended March 2016.

Why is it important? This is the third consecutive year where diesel vehicles have conceded shares to petrol vehicles. Elimination of diesel subsidy has dented the cost advantage.

Tell me more: The price difference between petrol and diesel used to be Rs 22.07 per litre in March 2013, but now it has narrowed down to Rs 13.12 per litre now.

6%

What is it? The negative impact of water shortage on the GDPs (gross domestic product) of some regions by 2050 if there is no change in water policies, according to World Bank.

Why is it important? The reduction in GDP would be a reflection of social costs – decline in household income, spike in food prices, bad health, migration and even conflicts. Without better policies (that boost efficiencies and allocation of water to better uses), the report warns that the regions with abundant water supply, such as Central Africa and East Asia, will face scarcity and the regions where it’s already in short supply, such as Middle East and the Sahel in Africa, situation will worsen.

Tell me more: Water shortages would dent Middle East’s GDP by 14%, Sahel’s by nearly 12% of GDP, Central Asia’s by 11% and east Asia about 7%, according to the report High and Dry: Climate Change, Water and the Economy.

53.2%

What is it? Percentage of votes Donald Trump got in Indiana primary on Tuesday in the run up to US presidential elections.

Why is it important? Following this Ted Cruz, Trump’s most serious competitor, suspended his campaign for the White House. This makes Trump the presumptive nominee of the Republican Party. Many expected there would be a contested convention in July.

Tell me more: On Democratic side, Bernie Sanders won Indiana primaries, but not by big enough margin to close the lead Hillary Clinton has in terms of number of delegates.

 

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News in Numbers, Dec 17, 2015: Ban on diesel vehicles’ registration, US Fed rate hike

 

15%

 

What is it? Delhi’s share in Mercedes-Benz’s sales.

 

Why is it important? Supreme Court has banned registration of new diesel engines above 2000cc in Delhi, a big market for the luxury car maker, until March 31. The initiative is to curb alarming levels of pollution in Delhi. The ban might favour its rivals, since most of the diesel models of BMW, Audi and Volvo have engines below 2,000 cc. Mercedes-Benz has said that this order “will severely impact” their expansion plans and future investments already in place for the Indian market.

 

Tell me more: Mahindra & Mahindra, India’s largest utility vehicle maker, has said that this order would affect 2% of its monthly sales.

 

400

 

What is it? Number of start-ups Karnataka government hopes to help build with the help of its newly launched warehouse, launched in partnership with industry body Nasscom.

 

Why is it important? This is the second such warehouse by the state government and is on a bigger scale than the first, which incubated 64 start-ups. In the first warehouse, a quarter of the 64 start-ups have raised combined funds of Rs 600 crore. Bangalore ranks 15th in terms of best start-up ecosystems globally, according to a report by Silicon Valley-based start-up benchmarking firm and such measures are likely to advance its standing as a hub for start-ups in India as well as worldwide.

 

Tell me more: The state government recently launched a start-up policy with the view to aid the growth of 20,000 tech start-ups and generating 6 lakh direct and 12 lakh indirect jobs.

 

0.25-0.5%

 

What is it? United States benchmark interest rate, set by US Federal Reserve.

 

Why is it important? That’s 0.25% hike. It affects financial markets globally and therefore, is closely watched. As for India, this hike could mean investors may pull out their money from emerging markets like India to invest in the US in anticipation of higher returns and it remains to be seen how they react to the hike. Foreign institutional investors have pulled out $2.5 billion from Indian markets since November in anticipation of the hike. This, in turn, could weaken the rupee, making imports costlier and negatively impacting inflation in India.

 

Tell me more: This is the first time in nearly a decade that the US has gone for a hike in interest rates after keeping it around zero since the 2008 financial crisis. For the US, this is a sign of economic recovery.

 

0.59 hectares

 

What is it? The average landholding per rural household as of 2013, according to data from the National Sample Survey Office.

 

Why is it important? This has almost halved from 1.01 in 1992. A farm household needs to have at least 1 hectare of land to earn enough to fulfill its consumption expenditure. A farm household with 0.01-0.4 hectares of land earns an income of Rs 4,152 per month but its monthly consumption expenditure amounts to Rs 5,401. Also, farm households with less than 1 hectare account for over two-thirds of agricultural households that are indebted, with the debt levels decreasing with increase in landholding.

 

Tell me more: Every four out of five rural household have landholdings of less than one hectare and over 7% own more than two hectares.

 

€26 million

 

What is it? Amount Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has earned by launching six satellites for Singapore on Wednesday.

 

Why is it important? Underlines the commercial potential of India’s space programme. So far, India has earned around $36.7 million (at today’s exchange rate) from the launch of foreign satellites while around $74 million have been committed for those in the pipeline. It’s also yet another confirmation of the robustness of ISRO’s workhorse Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C29), which recorded its 32nd flight.

 

Tell me more: With Wednesday’s launch, ISRO has launched 57 satellites for 20 countries.

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