Yet another specific feature of the changes in the consumer behavior of households was the increasing propensity to save. In January through September of 2004, the amount of cash household incomes made Rub. 7506.7 billion, savings, including the purchases of foreign exchange, made Rub. 1426.billion, what was by 20.4 per cent above the level registered in the preceding year. The amount of household deposits with crediting organizations on Ruble and foreign exchange denominated accounts made Rub. 1809.3 billion as on September 1, 2004, and increased by 17.1 per cent in comparison with the figures registered in the beginning of 2004 (the growth in Ruble and foreign exchange denominated accounts made 20.9 per cent and 8.1 per cent respectively). It should be noted that the household savings grew at the background of increasing differentiation of the population in terms of income levels. In January through September of 2004, the coefficient of funds made 14.8 times as compared with 14.4 times registered in the respective period of the preceding year, while the index of concentration of incomes (the Gini coefficient) increased to 0.406 as compared with 0.402 in the same period of 2003.
The structure of household incomes has significantly changed. In comparison with the figures observed in 2003, there was registered a stable increase in the share of property and business related incomes, while the share of wages and salaries and social payments declined.
Table The structure of household incomes in 2003 through 2004, in per cent 2003г. 2004г.
I II III IV I II III Cash incomes, total 100 100 100 100 100 100 Including:
Business incomes 11,4 11,1 11,8 11,1 11,4 11,5 12,Wages and salaries, including concealed wages and salaries 67,7 67,3 65,6 67,1 64,4 63,3 61,Social payments 14,3 14,3 14,7 13,8 13 13,7 13,Property related incomes 4,5 5 5,8 5,8 8,9 9,4 10,Other incomes 2,1 2,3 2,1 2,2 2,3 2,1 2,Source: Federal Service of State Statistics Taking into account the fact that wages and salaries account for dominating portion of household incomes, the priority problems are the problems of employment. In 2004, the size of employment in the economy increased by 2.3 per cent in comparison with the levels observed a year ago and made 68.1 million. The total number of unemployed calculated in accordance with the ILO methodology has declined by 1.1 million since January of 2004 and made 5.5 million by the end of October (7.4 per cent of the economically active population). The coefficient of tension (the number of unemployed citizens registered with employment agencies per vacancy) decreased from 2.3 in January of 2004 to 1.9 this October. As the demand for labor grows, there is observed a trend towards more efficient utilization of working time. In the first six months of 2004, the actual duration of a working day grew by 1.8 per cent in the economy at large and by 2.3 per cent in industry. As compared with the figures registered in the first six months of 2003, the number of employees working a short working week and being on forced administrative leaves has declined by almost one third. The changes on the labor market resulted from increasing rates of economic growth. As the labor motivation changes, there is observed a trend towards shorter leaves than stipulated by the labor legislation taken by the employees on the voluntary basis.
O. I. Izryadnova IET Business Survey: Industry in November of The first news on the state of the Russian industry in November do not permit to arrive to an unambiguous conclusion about the persistence of the upward trend registered in October in the course of surveys and later confirmed by official statistic data. In November, the rates of growth in demand did not increased, what made enterprises to diminish the intensity of production. However, the latter development resulted in favorable changes in the ratio between the dynamics of output and dynamics of demand. It is highly probable that the growth in output will persist in the next few months, although at a lower rate.
The data published by Rosstat in October provide certain evidence that the trend towards an industrial takeoff interrupted at the end of the 3rd quarter has resumed. In October, the average daily output grew by 0.5 per cent as compared with a 0.1 per cent decline observed in September (as adjusted for the seasonal factors). According to the estimates presented by the Center for Macroeconomic Analysis and Short Term Prognostication (CMASTP), in October the increase in the volumes of output of the raw materials sector (i.e. metallurgy, the chemical and forestry complex, as well as food industry) made the major contribution to the growth in the level of output across the industry at large. In January through October, the growth in industrial output made 106.2 per cent, while it should be noted that in October the increase made 103.5 per cent. In 2004, the industrial production index is estimated to make from 106.0 per cent to 106.2 per cent.
However, the first data on the state of the Russian industry in November do not permit to arrive to an unambiguous conclusion about the persistence of the upward trend registered in October in the course of surveys and later confirmed by official statistic data.
In November, the intensity of growth in sales (prior to the adjustment for the seasonal factor) declined by 6 points and turned out to be the minimum since July of 2004. A growth in sales was registered only in electrical power engineering and the forestry complex. Across other industries, the demand either decelerated its growth rates, or began to decrease in absolute terms (nonferrous metallurgy, construction industry, food industry). The data on sales as adjusted for the seasonal factor demonstrated the persistence of the November growth figures at the October level. However, the estimates of the increase in demand according to the above norm – below norm demonstrated that enterprises expected a more significant growth. The balance of evaluations declined by 2 points and was the lowest in the second six months of the year, while the share of “normal” evaluations also was at the minimum registered in the second half of the year.
In November, the rates of growth in output declined (prior to the adjustment for the seasonal factor) by 16 balance points at once. This year, only in January and May there were registered more slow rates of growth. The rates of increase in output have also decelerated across the majority of industries.
At the same time, enterprises in ferrous metallurgy, chemistry, petrochemistry, construction industry, and light industry reported a decline in absolute terms. As concerns the mechanical engineering, the intensity of growth has decreased by 17 points at once, however, it remained positive – the output still increases, although at a very slow rate. After the adjustment for the seasonal factor, the reports of the surveyed enterprises also demonstrated a deceleration of industrial growth. The balance declined by points and turned out to be the minimal since January of 2003. However, the ratio between the demand and output changed to the better in November. The share of enterprises, where output followed demand increased to 67 per cent. This increase occurred at the expense of the shrinking share of industrial enterprises, where output outpaced demand. In November, output outpaced demand only at 18 per cent of enterprises, while in the preceding 10 months of the year this share was at 26 per cent on the average. In November, the share of producers unable to meet the demand did not change: 15 per cent of enterprises reported that the demand for their products outpaced their output.
After a growth in purchases of machinery and equipment registered in two consecutive quarters, in the 4th quarter there was registered a decline of this indicator, in spite of the fact that the industry had practically used all idle production capacities remaining from the times of planned economy. In the 4th quarter, the evaluations of their production capacities by enterprises in comparison with the expected demand changed dramatically. The share of enterprises evaluating their available production capacities as excessive as compared with the expected demand for their products practically plummeted from per cent to 20 per cent. Therefore, enterprises believe that they will have to use their production capacities to the maximal degree in order to meet the effective demand. In the case the “symmetrical indicator” (i.e. the share of enterprises, where it is believed that their available production capacities are not sufficient to meet the expected demand for their products) is taken into account, it turns out that the Russian industry is close to the physical shortage of production capacities necessary to meet the expected demand for its products. The balance of this indicator (more than sufficient – less than sufficient) declined from + 15 per cent to + 6 per cent in the 4th quarter. In a short time, enterprises may encounter the problem of the lack of production capacities for production of their goods, of course in the case the industrial growth continues.
As concerns the short term outlook for the Russian industry, the forecasts of changes in demand are also far from being optimistic. In November, the balance of forecasts of sales declined to + 5 per cent, what is the minimum registered in 2004. After this indicator is adjusted for the seasonal factor, its value proved to be not so depressing; however, it was apparently insufficient for a revision of the pessimistic expectations.
The November forecasts of changes in demand turned out to be the most pessimistic in 2004. Although it seems that a growth in output will persist in the industry at large and across the majority of individual industries (with the exception of light and construction industries), the rates of this growth will be extremely low.
S. Tsukhlo Russian Agrifood Sector: Gowth Factors Exhausted The 2004 agrifood sector performance definitely indicates that the period of recuperative growth launched by 1998 crisis is over. Both agriculture and food industry stopped growing (Picture 1 and Picture 2).
In recent years the basic growth factor in the sector has been the protection of domestic market from import due to devaluated ruble. Larger exports can also be attributed to this factor (although to a lesser extent). But beginning from 2000 the deficit of agrifood trade started to grow again despite expanding exports. Imports of agrifood items already surpass the 1998 indicators (Picture 3). In this situation the government attempts to extend the factor’s effect by strengthening trade protectionism. Year after year budget support to agriculture in real terms diminishes while the overall level of protection increases quite intensely. In other words, on the national level the government tries to prolong growth in the sector by protecting it from import. Indeed, in recent years the weighted average import duty10 on agrifood items was raised (in 2002 it amounted to 13.2%, in 2003 – to 15.3%11), meat quotas, duties on import of rice and other commodities were introduced, cases of non-tariffs barriers to import became more frequent.
However, all these measures have failed to improve the sector’s performance – the average growth rates are falling at a high pace. Production indicators in some agricultural sub-sectors deteriorate. Although the output of many farm crops in 2004 exceeds the level of extremely poor-crop 2003, it still remains quite low as compared to previous years (Picture 4). Production of basic livestock products decreases as well (Picture 5), the only exception being poultry the output of which grows by 15-17% a year.
Does this mean that opportunities opened before the Russian agrifood sector after 1998 have been fully missed We find that it’s not exactly so. The above mentioned facts reflect the situation in domestic agrifood sector at large. However, from the Soviet period it inherited quite a lot of marginal production that long remained afloat due to soft budget constraints, lack of efficient bankruptcy mechanism, non-developed land market and other market reform failures. Actually, the sector is rapidly polarizing: on the one side, we evidence the emergence of quite competitive producers that succeeded in modernizing technologies, management and production structure within the short respite after 1998; on the other side, farms for which the period of recuperative growth only protracted the dying agony still continue operating.
This process is most vivid in agriculture where bankruptcy of enterprises is coupled with acute social problem and poor legislative basis. One can surely assert that two segments shaped in the sector Ad valorem part without specific component.
presently referred to as “agriculture”: farm production proper characterized by larger output, higher productivity and modernization, and the segment of former Soviet agricultural enterprises that became marginal producers and currently survive only thanks to state support at all levels having just one goal – to provide a source of income for local population. In fact, the second segment cannot be regarded as a part of the sector, and these are its performance indicators that pull the national averages of growth and productivity down. This assertion is supported by a lot of indirect evidences that will be described below.
First of all, agricultural production is quite clearly concentrating in a limited number of producers.
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