Mumbai: Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia on Wednesday said the third quarter GDP numbers are likely to ‘decelerate’ from the previous quarter.

"GDP numbers in the third quarter will be subdued. It is likely that it may decelerate in that period. However, whether growth rate in the second half will be less than the first half will be known after the third quarter figures are out," he said, delivering 3rd M Visvesvaraya memorial lecture here.

GDP growth in the second quarter came down to 6.9 percent from 8.4 percent a year ago, indicating a slowdown in the economy, taking the H1 numbers to 7.3 percent. However, headwinds to growth in Q3 emanate from the IIP numbers for the first month of the third quarter, which contracted by a whopping 5.1 percent against a full 11.3 percent year ago.

About the growth forecast for the whole fiscal, Ahluwalia said, "The economy has slowed down, but, we have not seen whether the deceleration has bottomed out ... we should wait for third quarter numbers to have a better picture of the whole year GDP number."

He also said although it is going to be around 7 percent that will not be a bad number by global standards.

Terming the sharp fall in October IIP data as temporary adjustment to slower growth rate, Ahluwalia said, "IIP data themselves have a lot of shortcomings in terms of reporting, which means the monthly numbers are not very reliable."

On inflation, he said it would be around 7 percent by end of the fiscal. "Food inflation has come down and overall inflation is also coming down. We hope inflation will be around 7 percent by the end of the fiscal."

Implementation of the proposed Food Security Bill will not add to food inflation as supply-side concerns can be taken care of in the future, he added.

Referring to the massive fall of rupee, he said the exchange rate movement is not unreasonable. "We have seen rupee falling to lower levels and then coming to Rs 44-45 to a dollar in the past. The rupee movement is demand-supply driven and there is nothing unreasonable in it."

(Agencies)