In recent months, a sharp debate has broken out over whether India is or isn’t creating new jobs. Supporters of the government cite studies, such as those based on Employees Provident Fund data, that show rising job growth. Critics point to household surveys that show jobs being shed in the past year, after the government shocked the economy by suddenly withdrawing most cash from circulation and then introducing a complex goods-and-services tax.Who’s right? Both are — and both are missing the point.QuicktakeIndia’s AspirationsJobs data in India is notoriously bad and contradictory. The five-year National Sample Survey doesn’t tell us about last year, and the Annual Survey of Industries data doesn’t capture new industries or services. Given different definitions of employment and different sources of data — many of which are marred by flaws — simply agreeing on how to measure job growth in India is a well-nigh impossible task.Broad jobs numbers in India aren’t especially revealing in any case. Employment rates and rates of participation in the labor force vary significantly between males and females, with India having one of the lowest proportions of working women (28 percent) in the world. The old and the young similarly have low participation… Read full this story
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