7th pay commission arrears not to push up car, house sales

New Delhi: Car and house sales are not expected to go up after giving the seven months’ arrears of the 7th Pay Commission recommendations to central government employees on August 31.

As per the notification and resolution, central government employees will receive an average 14.27 per cent hike in basic pay effective from January 1, 2016.

The previous 6th Pay Commission had recommended a 20 per cent hike which the government doubled while implementing it in 2008.

The hype around the 7th Pay Commission recommendations is completely unnecessary, as the real impact is going to be much lesser both in absolute and relative terms compared with the previous 6th Pay Commission. As such, the employees can’t spend more to buy a car or a house.

7th pay commission arrears, its nothing more than peanut for lower and middle level employees. A middle level employee will take home the 7th pay commission arrears that may range from Rs 40,000 to Rs 80,000 on August 31.

How can he purchase a car? With the take arrears salary of Rs 40,000, getting a car loan of Rs 4 lakh is a big deal for an employee. The employee has to bring in margin money to the tune of 15 per cent to 30 per cent of the loan amount, depending on banks.

So, an employee, who is to get arrears Rs 40,000, he will have to pay Rs 80,000, the margin amount for a car loan, which is 20 per cent of a car of Rs 4 lakh. It seems impossible for him to pay the margin money upfront.

Over 80 percent central government employees are working in middle and lower level rungs.

So, bankers say that the 7th pay commission arrears effect on retail lending will be a little.

The last such comprehensive hike in salaries did lead to a sharp increase in consumer spending. House, car and two-wheeler sales, for instance, recorded a sharp surge shortly after the sixth pay panel payouts.

The sixth pay commission report was submitted in 2008, with the higher salaries coming into effect retrospectively from January 1, 2006.

It entitled government employees to huge arrears, a part of which was spent on margin money for buying cars and houses.

The Finance ministry Office Memorandum No.1-5/2016-IC said on Friday, “The 7th Pay Commission arrears shall be paid in cash in one installment along with the payment of salary for the month of August 2016.”

Accordingly, The government’s overall arrears payout will be lower because of only seven months arrears this time, compared to the previous pay commission, which came in late.

It may be recalled that a month ago, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had “congratulated” central government employees after the Union Cabinet accorded its approval to the 7th pay commission recommendations.



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