35-40pct plunge witnessed in Diwali gifts this year: Survey
New Delhi [India], Oct. 21: In sync with the low-key festivities due to economic slowdown and pressure on their balance-sheets, corporate India saw lukewarm response in Diwali gifts this year to its associates, networked partners, employees and other key personalities, slashing the budget by at least 35-40 per cent under this head, a telephonic survey conducted by ASSOCHAM in the run-up to Diwali noted. The reduction in gifts is more for outside connects than employees who are more or less receiving their annual gesture from their employers. However, there has been certainly a downward impact on the bonus payments with several corporates reeling under debt and cutting costs in their overall operations. Besides, jerks arising out of demonetisation and the Goods and Services Tax (GST) too have affected the overall sentiment, the survey noted. "Consequent to slowdown in the Diwali gift sale, the FMCG companies which generally bet high on festive sales in the business of chocolates, cookies, sweets etc are reporting less than normal sales. Similar is the case with consumer durable firms engaged in washing machines, refrigerators, cooking ovens, electric stoves and other such items. Even the festive sale of high-end smartphones seems to have taken a hit," said D.S. Rawat, Secretary General of ASSOCHAM.
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