What is it? The rate of growth of core sectors in March, 2017, which contribute 37.9% to the Index of Industrial Production.
Why is it important? This is faster growth than seen in February, at 1% year-on-year. Output of steel, coal, and natural gas prices spurred the increase.
Tell me more: However, the growth was slower than last year’s March, when the eight core sectors together grew at 9.3%.
What is it? The number of local hires by Infosys in the US over the next two years.
Why is it important? This is part of its plans to work around the visa restrictions the US is levying after the new administration came into power. North America (includes Canada) accounts for over 60% of Infosys’ revenues. It joins Wipro in having announced plans for local hires in the US.
Tell me more: Infosys will also set up four technology and innovation hubs in the US. The first hub will be operational from 2021.
Rs 3,326 crore
What is it? The private equity investment in residential realty projects in the first quarter of 2017
Why is it important? It is a 42% decline from the previous quarter of Oct-Dec, 2016, at Rs 5,725 crore. PE investors stayed away as sales were slow and new launches were far and in between. Sales had slowed down as buyers waited for the imminent launch of the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2017. The act also calls for stricter measures against builders who do not complete projects or divert buyer’s money to other projects. Cushman & Wakefield who published the PE numbers, says builders were also seeking less funds to focus on completing existing projects.
Tell me more: Lower security of new investments in builders who were over-leveraged also made PE investors stay away.
Rs 235 crore
What is it? Cost of South Asia satellite to be launched on Friday.
Why is it important? Indian Space Research Organisation’s communication satellite is billed as India’s gift to neighbours, including Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Maldives and Afghanistan. It would help in access to education, healthcare and disaster relief infrastructure.
Tell me more: The 2230 kg satellite will be launched by ISRO’s GSLV Mk-3 from Sriharikota on May 5th.
What is it? The number of robots being deployed by Credit Suisse within the bank.
Why is it important? Robots, usually associated with with large factories, are making inroads into services sector, raising fears about job losses among some sections, even as banks look to automation to maintain growth and profits. These robots will help Credit Suisse employees with regulations and compliance queries, much like Apple’s Siri or Amazon’s Alexa (except that Siri and Alexa are generalist).
Tell me more: It’s not clear if these robots are hardware or only software. “Non-industrial robot revenues are likely to grow 10-fold within [next five years], and with the development of AI, Big Data Analytics and the Internet of Things we will start to perceive robots not only in hardware, but also in software terms,” an article published in Credit Suisse site last year said.