The budget will be presented by interim Finance Minister Piyush Goyal as Finance Minister Arun Jaitley is on medical leave.
As part of our pre-budget coverage, we conducted a poll to understand the key expectations and sentiment of the general public. IndiaInfoline's Budget 2019 Poll revealed a set of interesting expectations from respondents.
Here are some key highlights:
When asked if this budget would be full of populist measures, around 73% people said that they expected a populist budget with the general elections being around the corner.
Roughly 61% respondents expected a change in capital market taxes. The NDA government, in Budget 2018, introduced long-term capital gains taxes on equity gains of more than Rs1 lakh per year, which majorly upset market participants. It also introduced a Dividend Distribution Tax of 10% on dividends declared under equity schemes payable by mutual fund houses. Investors would expect that this tax burden would either be reduced or retracted.
Further, ~78% people expect changes in the tax structure for the salaried class. However, this seems unlikely as this won't be a full budget.
An interesting response we received was that on farm loan waivers - 65% voted against farm loan waivers being the right approach to solve the farmer crisis. A majority of the respondents thought that this would not resolve the ongoing agrarian crisis. However, this being a pre-election budget may have some form of subsidization from the government.
MSMEs are also expected to get due attention as they reel under several challenges. 71% of the respondents believe that there will be some key announcements in favor of MSMEs which may help job creation as well.