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COVID-19 toll on Indian economy deepens, jobs crisis to worsen: Poll

Renewed restrictions to curb the current coronavirus wave have stalled economic activity, leaving many millions out of work and pushing economists - who have broadly been bullish - to downgrade their views for the second time since early April.

May 28, 2021 / 07:49 AM IST

India's economic outlook has weakened again, albeit slightly, with worst-case scenario forecasts suggesting the toll from the coronavirus pandemic could be much deeper, stoking fears the job crisis may worsen over the coming year, a Reuters poll found.

Renewed restrictions to curb the current coronavirus wave have stalled economic activity, leaving many millions out of work and pushing economists - who have broadly been bullish - to downgrade their views for the second time since early April.

The May 20-27 poll showed the outlook for the current quarter was lowered to 21.6% annually, and to 9.8% on average for this fiscal year, down from 23.0% and 10.4% respectively a month ago. The economy was then forecast to grow 6.7% next fiscal year, compared to 6.5% predicted previously.

While the consensus pointed to healthy growth figures later this year, all 29 economists, in response to an additional question, warned the outlook was either "weak and prone to further downgrades" or "fragile, with a limited downside".