The government has steered clear of a populist Budget in what is the last full Budget before the general elections scheduled next year, analysts said on Wednesday.
Motilal Oswal, MD & CEO, Motial Oswal Financial Services, said the Budget remains focused on long-term economic growth through capex and sops to boost consumption for the middle-income group. This would support strong corporate earnings with positive bias for sectors like infra, housing, cement, capital goods, auto, and tourism. Despite the upcoming state elections, the government did not deliver a populist Budget and tried to maintain fiscal prudence, Oswal said.
Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services, said the market had mixed expectations on the budget presumed to be populist and low elbowroom for the government ahead of the slowing economy, high inflation, and interest rates.
George Thomas, Fund Manager - Equity, Quantum AMC, said the government has chosen higher capital expenditure as the main catalyst to stimulate the economy than any major consumption boost. Budgeted capex has a robust growth of 37 percent over the revised estimates of the current year.
Thomas said despite being the last full Budget before the Lok Sabha elections, the absence of major populist measures is positive.
The Budget lacked any major direct measures to stimulate consumption and the rural economy. The absence of any changes in the capital gains tax rate is a relief. Overall, the fiscal consolidation pathway and robust infra spends would support broader economic growth in the medium term.
Sachin Menon, Partner, and Head, Indirect Tax, KPMG in India, said that kudos to the Finance Minister and her team for pulling off a growth-oriented Budget without much populism in a pre-election year. (KB/IANS)