Indians are buying less of everything as the economy is losing steam, slowing down for the third consecutive quarter. One indication of this is the changing commentary of managements, which are aimed at pacifying the shareholders at a time of unusual circumstances.
Major fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) companies are suffering the impact of rural distress. Sales growth of even basic products like atta, hair oil and toothpaste have declined.
ITC, while announcing its latest quarterly results said: "The FMCG-Others segment delivered a resilient performance during the quarter amidst a marked slowdown in the FMCG industry across urban and rural markets".
The well known coffee and Maggie maker Nestle India said: "We are proud of our strong performances in Maggi, Kitkat and Munch among others. However, environment continues to be challenging with headwinds in commodity prices and softer demand conditions".
The Cinthol soap, GoodKnight mosquito repellant and Ezee detergent maker, Godrej Consumer Products, said: "Our India business delivered a steady volume growth of 5 per cent, amidst a general slowdown in staples consumption. We expect a gradual recovery in the coming quarters for the industry and also for our business".
Weak rural demand also impacted the sale of two wheelers. Commenting on the company's mperformance Eicher Motors said: "The two-wheeler and the CV (commercial vehicles) industry continue to face headwinds on account of weak consumer demand".
"In the CV industry, sales have been low due to the weak demand on account of economic slowdown and liquidity and it is also witnessing heavy discounting," the company added.
FMCG giant Hindustan Uniliver, which saw a significant decline in sales volumes during the June quarter, had also said that "the near-term demand will remain subdued given macroeconomic conditions."