Impact of Inflation on Business Sector in India

Arpit avatar

Inflation is increase in prices and fall in the purchasing value of money over the time. It means that the same amount of money buys fewer things. This can be caused by various factors, including increased demand for goods, increased production costs, or decreased supply.

Definition of Inflation

David Ranson defines inflation as “the loss in purchasing power of a currency unit such as the dollar, usually expressed as a general rise in the prices of goods and services.”

Milton Friedman while not directly defining inflation, Friedman offers a perspective often used in defining it: “Inflation is always and everywhere a monetary problem.” This suggests inflation is linked to the growth of the money supply.

Maram Ibrahim defines inflation as “the rate at which the prices for goods and services increase.”

Negative Impact

inflation in use and india

Reduced purchasing power: Inflation badly impact on the purchasing power of money. It mean that the same amount of money can buy fewer goods and services. Lets understand with a small example let government distribute lots of money to everyone.

And now you went to shop and ask shopkeeper that I want 1 kg sugar now shopkeeper will say I will charge ₹900 for this sugar. So if you told that its price is ₹50/kg then he said that why I will sell you when I already have money. This can lead to a decline in the standard of living for individuals and households.

Uncertainty and instability: High inflation rates create instability in the economy. And businesses find it difficult to plan and make investment decisions. Because they are unsure about future prices and costs. This can block economic growth.

Income redistribution: Inflation lead to a redistribution of income and wealth. Those who are on fixed incomes or have low wages they are struggling to keep up with rising prices. While those who own assets or have higher incomes they are better able to protect their purchasing power.

Negative impact on savings and investments: Inflation break down the value of savings and investments. If the rate of inflation is higher than the rate of return on savings, the real value of these assets decreases over time.

Increased production costs: Inflation lead to higher production costs for businesses, and if there are sudden increases in the prices of raw materials. This can reduce profitability and competitiveness, leading to job losses and slower the economic growth.

Impact on interest rates: Inflation influence the interest rates of any credit or loan which you have taken. Central banks generally raise interest rates to control inflation, which can increase borrowing costs for businesses and individuals. This reduce the investment and consumption, and directly affect the economy monitory system

Social and political implications: High inflation rates have social and political implications. It can lead to social confusion, as people struggle to cope with rising prices and declining living standards. In extreme cases, it can even contribute to political instability.

Decreased Demand

Now I’m giving you my own example

Rising inflation is really impacting how I spend my money. With the higher cost of living, I’ve had to be more careful with my spending and cut back overall. I’m buying less, especially for non-essential items and big purchases. For example, I’m much more likely to delay buying a new electronic device than to buy less groceries.

When it comes to essentials, I’m prioritizing staples over discretionary items. For things like household products, snacks, frozen foods, dairy and eggs, I’ve switched to store-brand or generic alternatives instead of buying name brands. The store brands are typically cheaper, so it helps me save some money on everyday items.

From what I know, the impact of inflation varies across regions. Here in Europe, we’re really feeling the higher cost of living. But I’ve heard consumers in the Americas aren’t being hit as hard. And in Southeast Asia, the effects on consumer confidence differ depending on the specific market.

Positive Impact of Inflation

Inventory Appreciation: Businesses holding inventory experience an increase in its value due to inflation. This happens because the replacement cost of the inventory rises. As the general price of goods increases. When sold at the higher current market price. It can lead to a higher profit margin compared to if the inventory was purchased at an earlier, lower price.

Hedging with Pricing Power: Companies with strong brand loyalty like (Apple, Procter & Gamble). They have very limited competition have more chance to increase the prices without any impacting sales volume. This allows them to maintain profit margins even when their input costs increase.

By strategically raising prices, these companies can effectively hedge against inflation and protect their profitability.

Impact on MSMEs in India

In the India, inflation has a significant impact on MSMEs (Small and Medium-sized Enterprises), primarily due to their limited resources and bargaining power.

Impact on MSMEs

  1. Increased Operational Costs: Inflation leads to higher costs of raw materials, labor, and other inputs. For MSMEs, which often have limited resources, these increased costs and also impact their profit.
  2. Decreased Purchasing Power: As inflation break the purchasing power of money, MSMEs find it harder to attract customers or maintain their market share, especially against larger competitors who can absorb higher costs.
  3. Credit Constraints: Inflation can lead to higher interest rates, making it more expensive for MSMEs to borrow. It limit their ability to expand or invest in new projects.
  4. Increased Risk of Bankruptcy: The combination of higher operational costs, decreased purchasing power, and credit constraints can increase the risk of bankruptcy for MSMEs.

Government Policies

  • Interest Rate Hikes: The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) often raises interest rates to control inflation. Higher interest rates make borrowing more expensive, which can help reduce demand and slow down inflation. However, this also increase the cost of borrowing for businesses, including MSMEs, potentially affecting their ability to invest or expand.
  • Monetary Policy: The RBI’s monetary policy, including the management of money supply and interest rates, plays a crucial role in controlling inflation. Tightening monetary policy can help reduce inflation but may also have negative effects on businesses, including MSMEs, by making it more expensive to borrow.
  • Fiscal Policy: The government’s fiscal policy, including taxation and government spending, also influence inflation. For example, reducing government spending or increasing taxes help control inflation but also have negative effects on businesses, including MSMEs, by reducing their disposable income or increasing their tax burden.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *