The output of eight core industries contracted 1.5 per cent in November. In the same month last year, it grew 3.3 per cent.

These eight industries have a combined share of over 40 per cent in the IIP (Index of Industrial Production). This means industrial growth is also expected to be subdued in November.

This is the fourth continuous month of decline reported in the core industries. But November’s decline is an improvement over the 5.8 per cent contraction reported in October.

In all, five sectors — electricity, steel, coal, natural gas and crude oil — have reported a decline while cement, fertiliser and refinery products posted positive growth.

The steepest decline, at 5.8 per cent, was in crude oil output while fertilisers recorded highest growth at 13.6 per cent.

DK Pant, Chief Economist at India-Ratings, said, “Most disappointing has been the contraction of electricity output for four consecutive months, which is a reflection of the state of the economy.’

Madan Sabnavis, Chief Economist at CARE Ratings, felt that though there was contraction in November, there is a silver lining and that is certain sectors like cement and fertilisers have registered positive growth. It is a mixed picture when it comes to non-energy based industries that have performed relatively better.

“Cement growth of 4.1 per cent comes against a high base of 8.8 per cent growth and is positive as it indicates strong developments in the construction areas.

“Growth in fertilisers is also strong at 13.6 per cent reflecting both demand for rabi sowing and build-up of inventory for the next season. This may slow down in the subsequent months,” Sabnavis said.