TOI recently tweeted a ‘news story’ along with an infographic to show the ‘dip in car sales after demonetization’. Even a two-minute reading of this material raised some simple and worrying questions on the integrity of reporting.
Firstly, the demonetization is of ₹500 and ₹1000 currency notes. Cars referred to above have a starting price of ₹3.5 lac. Why should the withdrawal of ₹500 and ₹1000 impact products of such high value?
So, if the demonetization has impacted car sales, that shows that bulk of the car sales must have been happening on cash basis. So, this ‘dip’ means the black money transactions are disappearing out of our economy. Isn’t this a good thing? And why should the headline carry a negative tone – ‘car sales take a ‘dip’? Shouldn’t it instead read ‘demonitisation succeeds in tackling car sales through black money’.
Even if the reporter or curator was negligent, can he/she miss the ‘fact’ that there is a 70-80% drop in luxury segment which ranges from ₹26 lac to ₹1.5 crores!!! If this has happened after demonetization what does this mean? If these drops are down to demonetization, as it’s being suggested, shouldn’t they be complimenting?
Why are the ‘reasons for fall in sales’ so weak? How about the reason that some people are unable to use black money for purchasing cars and hence the sales have dropped.
For the luxury car segment (which is from ₹26 lac to ₹1.5 crore), the cash crunch just shouldn’t matter. Neither does the ‘salaried class’ reason matter. Some waiting for newer models? Isn’t that a Q4 behaviour of prospective car buyers every year? How lame and unresearched this is.
Plus, the comparison between 2015 and 2016 shows that this is an annual phenomenon. So, is there even a need to connect this with demonetization?
How can I take these people seriously?