Economy: October 2020 Current Affairs Current Affairs Notes | EduRev

Current Affairs & Hindu Analysis: Daily, Weekly & Monthly

Current Affairs : Economy: October 2020 Current Affairs Current Affairs Notes | EduRev

 Page 1


 
22                                                                               www.visionias.in                                                                        ©Vision IAS  
3. ECONOMY 
3.1. POVERTY AND SHARED PROSPERITY 
Why in news? 
World Bank recently released the report titled “Poverty and Shared Prosperity 2020: Reversals of Fortune” which 
examines how the COVID19 crisis, compounding the risks posed by armed conflict and climate change, is 
affecting poverty trends, inclusive growth, and the characteristics of the poor around the world.  
Key findings 
• Reversal of extreme poverty trends: Extreme poverty is defined as living below the international poverty 
line of $1.90 or roughly Rs 145-150 per day. Global extreme poverty is expected to rise in 2020 for the first 
time in over 20 years mainly due to three reasons:  
o COVID-19 and its associated economic crisis:  
? Current projections suggest that, in 2020, between 88 million and 115 million people could fall 
back into extreme poverty as a result of the pandemic—returning global poverty rates to 2017 
levels—with even larger numbers in 2021.  
? South Asia will be the hardest hit region, with 49 million additional people pushed into extreme 
poverty followed by South Africa. 
o Armed conflicts:  
? More than 40 percent of the world’s poor now live in conflict-affected countries, a number 
expected to rise further in the coming decade.  
? Conflict destroys assets and livelihoods. In the Middle East and North Africa, for example, extreme 
poverty rates nearly doubled between 2015 and 2018, spurred by the conflicts in the Syria and 
Yemen. 
o Climate change:  
? Under present scenarios, the combined effects of climate change could push between 68 million 
and 132 million more people into poverty by 2030.  
? With their livelihoods predominantly based on primary activities, the poorest are least able to 
adapt, more vulnerable and less resilient to the impacts of climate change. The impacts of climate 
change can also raise food prices, worsen people’s health, and increase exposure to disasters.  
• Shared Prosperity: Shared prosperity is defined as the growth in the income of the poorest 40% of a country’s 
population. A high level of shared prosperity is an important indicator of inclusion and well-being in any 
country.  
o During 2012-2017, the growth was inclusive and the incomes of the poorest 40 per cent of the population 
grew at 2.3% per annum. However, average global shared prosperity may stagnate or even contract over 
2019-2021 due to the reduced growth in average incomes as a result of COVID crisis. This may lead to an 
increase in income inequality, resulting in a world that is less inclusive. 
• Changing profile of global poor: The poor remain predominantly rural, young, and undereducated. However, 
the current COVID crisis is creating  millions of “new poor.” The new poor” probably will:   
o be more urban than the chronic poor. 
o be more engaged in informal services and manufacturing and less in agriculture. 
Way forward suggested by the report 
• Policy responses need to reflect the changing profile of the poor : Safety net programs will in particular need 
to reach people in the informal sector in both rural and urban areas  
• Poverty action needs to address hot spots of conflict, climate change and COVID-19.  
• Learning lessons from emergency actions taken during COVID and long-term development experiences : 
o Closing the gap between policy aspiration and attainment: Much more attention needs to be given not 
just to “getting policies right” but to building the capability of the administrative systems that are tasked 
with implementing them.  
o Enhancing and improving data: Data limitations create doubts among the general public, obstruct 
scientific progress, and hinder the implementation of sound, evidence-based development policies. 
Page 2


 
22                                                                               www.visionias.in                                                                        ©Vision IAS  
3. ECONOMY 
3.1. POVERTY AND SHARED PROSPERITY 
Why in news? 
World Bank recently released the report titled “Poverty and Shared Prosperity 2020: Reversals of Fortune” which 
examines how the COVID19 crisis, compounding the risks posed by armed conflict and climate change, is 
affecting poverty trends, inclusive growth, and the characteristics of the poor around the world.  
Key findings 
• Reversal of extreme poverty trends: Extreme poverty is defined as living below the international poverty 
line of $1.90 or roughly Rs 145-150 per day. Global extreme poverty is expected to rise in 2020 for the first 
time in over 20 years mainly due to three reasons:  
o COVID-19 and its associated economic crisis:  
? Current projections suggest that, in 2020, between 88 million and 115 million people could fall 
back into extreme poverty as a result of the pandemic—returning global poverty rates to 2017 
levels—with even larger numbers in 2021.  
? South Asia will be the hardest hit region, with 49 million additional people pushed into extreme 
poverty followed by South Africa. 
o Armed conflicts:  
? More than 40 percent of the world’s poor now live in conflict-affected countries, a number 
expected to rise further in the coming decade.  
? Conflict destroys assets and livelihoods. In the Middle East and North Africa, for example, extreme 
poverty rates nearly doubled between 2015 and 2018, spurred by the conflicts in the Syria and 
Yemen. 
o Climate change:  
? Under present scenarios, the combined effects of climate change could push between 68 million 
and 132 million more people into poverty by 2030.  
? With their livelihoods predominantly based on primary activities, the poorest are least able to 
adapt, more vulnerable and less resilient to the impacts of climate change. The impacts of climate 
change can also raise food prices, worsen people’s health, and increase exposure to disasters.  
• Shared Prosperity: Shared prosperity is defined as the growth in the income of the poorest 40% of a country’s 
population. A high level of shared prosperity is an important indicator of inclusion and well-being in any 
country.  
o During 2012-2017, the growth was inclusive and the incomes of the poorest 40 per cent of the population 
grew at 2.3% per annum. However, average global shared prosperity may stagnate or even contract over 
2019-2021 due to the reduced growth in average incomes as a result of COVID crisis. This may lead to an 
increase in income inequality, resulting in a world that is less inclusive. 
• Changing profile of global poor: The poor remain predominantly rural, young, and undereducated. However, 
the current COVID crisis is creating  millions of “new poor.” The new poor” probably will:   
o be more urban than the chronic poor. 
o be more engaged in informal services and manufacturing and less in agriculture. 
Way forward suggested by the report 
• Policy responses need to reflect the changing profile of the poor : Safety net programs will in particular need 
to reach people in the informal sector in both rural and urban areas  
• Poverty action needs to address hot spots of conflict, climate change and COVID-19.  
• Learning lessons from emergency actions taken during COVID and long-term development experiences : 
o Closing the gap between policy aspiration and attainment: Much more attention needs to be given not 
just to “getting policies right” but to building the capability of the administrative systems that are tasked 
with implementing them.  
o Enhancing and improving data: Data limitations create doubts among the general public, obstruct 
scientific progress, and hinder the implementation of sound, evidence-based development policies. 
 
23                                                                               www.visionias.in                                                                        ©Vision IAS  
o Investing in preparedness and prevention: An example of successful international cooperation in disaster 
preparedness is the Indian Ocean Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System (IOTWMS) which is 
operational since 2013.  
o Expanding cooperation and coordination: The fact that all are affected in the current crisis is an 
opportunity for leaders to promote a sense of social inclusion and collective resolve, to improve the 
empirical foundations of policy making, and ensure that governments’ decisions are trusted.  
Poverty in India 
• India remains the home of 364 million poor people (28 percent), out of a global population of the 1.3 billion as per 
Human Development Index (HDI), 2019. 
• 271 million people came out of poverty between 2005-15. However, as per Niti Aayog's SDG Index 2019, Indians have 
fallen back into poverty, hunger and income inequality in the past two years.  
• Measures taken for poor during the COVID include package under Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana, cash 
transfers under PM Kisan scheme, more liberal financing under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment 
Guarantee Act, 2005, empowering the poor, labourers, migrants through the Atma Nirbhar bharat scheme etc.  
• Poverty estimation in India is carried out by NITI Aayog’s task force through the calculation of poverty line based 
on the data captured by the National Sample Survey Office under the Ministry of Statistics and Programme 
Implementation (MOSPI). 
• Poverty line estimation in India is based on the consumption expenditure and not on the income levels. 
3.2. NOBEL PRIZE IN ECONOMICS 
Why in news?  
This year’s Nobel Economics Prize has 
been awarded to U.S. economists Paul 
Milgrom and Robert Wilson for their 
works on auction theory. 
More in news  
• They won the Nobel Economics Prize 
for improvements to auction theory 
and invention of new auction 
formats that could also be applied to 
selling of goods and services (such as 
radio frequencies) that are difficult to 
sell through traditional auction 
formats. 
• The discoveries have benefitted 
sellers, buyers and taxpayers around 
the world. 
What is auction theory?  
• It is a concept of transparent 
allocation of resources or items of business in a free market to the best bidder for optimum utilization.  
• It is a branch of applied economics and prescribes different sets of rules or designs for transactions. 
• Essentially, it is about how auctions lead to the discovery of the price of a commodity. Auction theory studies: 
o How auctions are designed? 
o What rules govern the auctions? 
o How bidders behave in auction? 
o What outcomes are achieved through auction? 
• Benefits of the auction theory: 
o It helps to understand the bidders’ behaviours 
o It helps in choosing the best design/format of the auction for various goods and services. 
o It also helps understand the evolving nature of auction and pricing of items and resources in a country or 
globally. 
What is an auction? 
• An auction is a price discovery mechanism of various goods and 
services.  
• In any auction, potential buyers place competitive bids on the 
goods and services (put for bidding) either in an open or closed 
format. 
• Generally, in any auction, the private entities want to maximize their 
revenue, whereas government may give priority to the factors 
other than maximizing revenue. 
• For instance, instead of allocating the spectrum to the highest bidder 
government may choose a bidder who would make the telecom 
accessible to the poor.  
o In fact in India, before auctions became the norm for limited 
resources such as radio waves, governments used to allocate 
them through licensing mechanism to the private entity best 
suited for ensuring social benefits like accessibility to the poor.  
o This approach, however, led to a proliferation of lobbying. 
• Key variables that determine the outcome of an auction: 
o Rules of the auction 
o Value (personal or professional) attached to the good put to 
vote 
o The uncertainty involved in bidding 
Page 3


 
22                                                                               www.visionias.in                                                                        ©Vision IAS  
3. ECONOMY 
3.1. POVERTY AND SHARED PROSPERITY 
Why in news? 
World Bank recently released the report titled “Poverty and Shared Prosperity 2020: Reversals of Fortune” which 
examines how the COVID19 crisis, compounding the risks posed by armed conflict and climate change, is 
affecting poverty trends, inclusive growth, and the characteristics of the poor around the world.  
Key findings 
• Reversal of extreme poverty trends: Extreme poverty is defined as living below the international poverty 
line of $1.90 or roughly Rs 145-150 per day. Global extreme poverty is expected to rise in 2020 for the first 
time in over 20 years mainly due to three reasons:  
o COVID-19 and its associated economic crisis:  
? Current projections suggest that, in 2020, between 88 million and 115 million people could fall 
back into extreme poverty as a result of the pandemic—returning global poverty rates to 2017 
levels—with even larger numbers in 2021.  
? South Asia will be the hardest hit region, with 49 million additional people pushed into extreme 
poverty followed by South Africa. 
o Armed conflicts:  
? More than 40 percent of the world’s poor now live in conflict-affected countries, a number 
expected to rise further in the coming decade.  
? Conflict destroys assets and livelihoods. In the Middle East and North Africa, for example, extreme 
poverty rates nearly doubled between 2015 and 2018, spurred by the conflicts in the Syria and 
Yemen. 
o Climate change:  
? Under present scenarios, the combined effects of climate change could push between 68 million 
and 132 million more people into poverty by 2030.  
? With their livelihoods predominantly based on primary activities, the poorest are least able to 
adapt, more vulnerable and less resilient to the impacts of climate change. The impacts of climate 
change can also raise food prices, worsen people’s health, and increase exposure to disasters.  
• Shared Prosperity: Shared prosperity is defined as the growth in the income of the poorest 40% of a country’s 
population. A high level of shared prosperity is an important indicator of inclusion and well-being in any 
country.  
o During 2012-2017, the growth was inclusive and the incomes of the poorest 40 per cent of the population 
grew at 2.3% per annum. However, average global shared prosperity may stagnate or even contract over 
2019-2021 due to the reduced growth in average incomes as a result of COVID crisis. This may lead to an 
increase in income inequality, resulting in a world that is less inclusive. 
• Changing profile of global poor: The poor remain predominantly rural, young, and undereducated. However, 
the current COVID crisis is creating  millions of “new poor.” The new poor” probably will:   
o be more urban than the chronic poor. 
o be more engaged in informal services and manufacturing and less in agriculture. 
Way forward suggested by the report 
• Policy responses need to reflect the changing profile of the poor : Safety net programs will in particular need 
to reach people in the informal sector in both rural and urban areas  
• Poverty action needs to address hot spots of conflict, climate change and COVID-19.  
• Learning lessons from emergency actions taken during COVID and long-term development experiences : 
o Closing the gap between policy aspiration and attainment: Much more attention needs to be given not 
just to “getting policies right” but to building the capability of the administrative systems that are tasked 
with implementing them.  
o Enhancing and improving data: Data limitations create doubts among the general public, obstruct 
scientific progress, and hinder the implementation of sound, evidence-based development policies. 
 
23                                                                               www.visionias.in                                                                        ©Vision IAS  
o Investing in preparedness and prevention: An example of successful international cooperation in disaster 
preparedness is the Indian Ocean Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System (IOTWMS) which is 
operational since 2013.  
o Expanding cooperation and coordination: The fact that all are affected in the current crisis is an 
opportunity for leaders to promote a sense of social inclusion and collective resolve, to improve the 
empirical foundations of policy making, and ensure that governments’ decisions are trusted.  
Poverty in India 
• India remains the home of 364 million poor people (28 percent), out of a global population of the 1.3 billion as per 
Human Development Index (HDI), 2019. 
• 271 million people came out of poverty between 2005-15. However, as per Niti Aayog's SDG Index 2019, Indians have 
fallen back into poverty, hunger and income inequality in the past two years.  
• Measures taken for poor during the COVID include package under Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana, cash 
transfers under PM Kisan scheme, more liberal financing under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment 
Guarantee Act, 2005, empowering the poor, labourers, migrants through the Atma Nirbhar bharat scheme etc.  
• Poverty estimation in India is carried out by NITI Aayog’s task force through the calculation of poverty line based 
on the data captured by the National Sample Survey Office under the Ministry of Statistics and Programme 
Implementation (MOSPI). 
• Poverty line estimation in India is based on the consumption expenditure and not on the income levels. 
3.2. NOBEL PRIZE IN ECONOMICS 
Why in news?  
This year’s Nobel Economics Prize has 
been awarded to U.S. economists Paul 
Milgrom and Robert Wilson for their 
works on auction theory. 
More in news  
• They won the Nobel Economics Prize 
for improvements to auction theory 
and invention of new auction 
formats that could also be applied to 
selling of goods and services (such as 
radio frequencies) that are difficult to 
sell through traditional auction 
formats. 
• The discoveries have benefitted 
sellers, buyers and taxpayers around 
the world. 
What is auction theory?  
• It is a concept of transparent 
allocation of resources or items of business in a free market to the best bidder for optimum utilization.  
• It is a branch of applied economics and prescribes different sets of rules or designs for transactions. 
• Essentially, it is about how auctions lead to the discovery of the price of a commodity. Auction theory studies: 
o How auctions are designed? 
o What rules govern the auctions? 
o How bidders behave in auction? 
o What outcomes are achieved through auction? 
• Benefits of the auction theory: 
o It helps to understand the bidders’ behaviours 
o It helps in choosing the best design/format of the auction for various goods and services. 
o It also helps understand the evolving nature of auction and pricing of items and resources in a country or 
globally. 
What is an auction? 
• An auction is a price discovery mechanism of various goods and 
services.  
• In any auction, potential buyers place competitive bids on the 
goods and services (put for bidding) either in an open or closed 
format. 
• Generally, in any auction, the private entities want to maximize their 
revenue, whereas government may give priority to the factors 
other than maximizing revenue. 
• For instance, instead of allocating the spectrum to the highest bidder 
government may choose a bidder who would make the telecom 
accessible to the poor.  
o In fact in India, before auctions became the norm for limited 
resources such as radio waves, governments used to allocate 
them through licensing mechanism to the private entity best 
suited for ensuring social benefits like accessibility to the poor.  
o This approach, however, led to a proliferation of lobbying. 
• Key variables that determine the outcome of an auction: 
o Rules of the auction 
o Value (personal or professional) attached to the good put to 
vote 
o The uncertainty involved in bidding 
 
24                                                                               www.visionias.in                                                                        ©Vision IAS  
o It helps to understand the outcomes of different rules for auction and consequent final prices. 
o It also helps to understand why governments across the world should not put too much emphasis on 
maximizing revenues 
? For instance, in India the spectrum is allocated to the highest bidder; this is also one of the reasons 
why telecom sector is under heavy debt. 
? To avoid such problems in auction India should chose the ‘second-price’ auction theory that allows 
the winning bidder (or the highest bidder) to pay what the second-highest bidder offered. 
Individuals contributions 
• Winners curse:  Wilson worked on common value principle and opined that the rational bidders tend to place 
bids below their own best estimate of the common value to evade the winner’s curse. 
o It is possible to overbid ($50 when the real 
value is closer to $25) due to various 
reasons, in such cases one wins the 
auction but loses out in reality. 
• Multi stage bidding: Milgrom opined that 
private values differ from bidder to bidder. He 
demonstrated that an auction format will give 
the seller higher expected revenue when 
bidders learn more about each other’s 
estimated values (which depends on both 
private as well as common value) during 
bidding.  
o Therefore, allowing multi-stage bidding is 
a good way to get more value as every 
participant gets more time to 
match/outbid the previous highest bid.  
o He analysed the bidding strategies in a number of well-known auction formats, and demonstrated that an 
auction format will give the seller higher expected revenue when bidders learn more about each other’s 
estimated values during bidding. 
3.3. ASSET RECONSTRUCTION COMPANIES 
Why in News? 
Recently, former central bankers favored role of Asset reconstruction companies (ARCs) in insolvency resolution. 
About ARCs 
• ARC is a special type of financial institution that buys the debtors of the bank at a mutually agreed value and 
attempts to recover the debts or associated securities by itself.  
• Narsimham Committee – I (1991) envisaged setting up of a central Asset Reconstruction Fund to facilitate 
Banks to improve their balance sheets by cleaning up their non-performing loans portfolio. Later, Narsimham 
Committee – II (1998) proposed ARCs.  
• ARC is incorporated under the Companies Act and registered with Reserve Bank of India under the 
Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interest (SARFAESI) Act, 
2002.  
o RBI regulates ARCs as Non-Banking Financial Companies. 
• ARCIL was the first ARC set up by ICICI Bank, State Bank of India and IDBI. There are around 24 ARCs now and 
Edelweiss is the largest one. 
• Role of ARCs as defined under SARFAESI Act: 
o Acquisition of financial assets 
o Change or takeover of Management / Sale or Lease of Business of the Borrower 
o Rescheduling of Debts 
o Enforcement of Security Interest 
o Settlement of dues payable by the borrower 
Common value and Private value  
• These terms refer to the benefits that a person may derive 
from a particular good or service.  
• Common value: Common value is the real monetary value 
(realized as well as unrealized) of the goods/ services. It is 
same for everyone.  
o Examples include the future value of radio 
frequencies or the volume of minerals in a particular 
area or cost involved in a making a painting.  
• Private value: It is the personal value attached to the 
goods/ services by an individual. It differs from person to 
person.  
o An art loving person will value a painting more than a 
philistine; someone may attach his/her status to 
winning the auction at any cost. 
Page 4


 
22                                                                               www.visionias.in                                                                        ©Vision IAS  
3. ECONOMY 
3.1. POVERTY AND SHARED PROSPERITY 
Why in news? 
World Bank recently released the report titled “Poverty and Shared Prosperity 2020: Reversals of Fortune” which 
examines how the COVID19 crisis, compounding the risks posed by armed conflict and climate change, is 
affecting poverty trends, inclusive growth, and the characteristics of the poor around the world.  
Key findings 
• Reversal of extreme poverty trends: Extreme poverty is defined as living below the international poverty 
line of $1.90 or roughly Rs 145-150 per day. Global extreme poverty is expected to rise in 2020 for the first 
time in over 20 years mainly due to three reasons:  
o COVID-19 and its associated economic crisis:  
? Current projections suggest that, in 2020, between 88 million and 115 million people could fall 
back into extreme poverty as a result of the pandemic—returning global poverty rates to 2017 
levels—with even larger numbers in 2021.  
? South Asia will be the hardest hit region, with 49 million additional people pushed into extreme 
poverty followed by South Africa. 
o Armed conflicts:  
? More than 40 percent of the world’s poor now live in conflict-affected countries, a number 
expected to rise further in the coming decade.  
? Conflict destroys assets and livelihoods. In the Middle East and North Africa, for example, extreme 
poverty rates nearly doubled between 2015 and 2018, spurred by the conflicts in the Syria and 
Yemen. 
o Climate change:  
? Under present scenarios, the combined effects of climate change could push between 68 million 
and 132 million more people into poverty by 2030.  
? With their livelihoods predominantly based on primary activities, the poorest are least able to 
adapt, more vulnerable and less resilient to the impacts of climate change. The impacts of climate 
change can also raise food prices, worsen people’s health, and increase exposure to disasters.  
• Shared Prosperity: Shared prosperity is defined as the growth in the income of the poorest 40% of a country’s 
population. A high level of shared prosperity is an important indicator of inclusion and well-being in any 
country.  
o During 2012-2017, the growth was inclusive and the incomes of the poorest 40 per cent of the population 
grew at 2.3% per annum. However, average global shared prosperity may stagnate or even contract over 
2019-2021 due to the reduced growth in average incomes as a result of COVID crisis. This may lead to an 
increase in income inequality, resulting in a world that is less inclusive. 
• Changing profile of global poor: The poor remain predominantly rural, young, and undereducated. However, 
the current COVID crisis is creating  millions of “new poor.” The new poor” probably will:   
o be more urban than the chronic poor. 
o be more engaged in informal services and manufacturing and less in agriculture. 
Way forward suggested by the report 
• Policy responses need to reflect the changing profile of the poor : Safety net programs will in particular need 
to reach people in the informal sector in both rural and urban areas  
• Poverty action needs to address hot spots of conflict, climate change and COVID-19.  
• Learning lessons from emergency actions taken during COVID and long-term development experiences : 
o Closing the gap between policy aspiration and attainment: Much more attention needs to be given not 
just to “getting policies right” but to building the capability of the administrative systems that are tasked 
with implementing them.  
o Enhancing and improving data: Data limitations create doubts among the general public, obstruct 
scientific progress, and hinder the implementation of sound, evidence-based development policies. 
 
23                                                                               www.visionias.in                                                                        ©Vision IAS  
o Investing in preparedness and prevention: An example of successful international cooperation in disaster 
preparedness is the Indian Ocean Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System (IOTWMS) which is 
operational since 2013.  
o Expanding cooperation and coordination: The fact that all are affected in the current crisis is an 
opportunity for leaders to promote a sense of social inclusion and collective resolve, to improve the 
empirical foundations of policy making, and ensure that governments’ decisions are trusted.  
Poverty in India 
• India remains the home of 364 million poor people (28 percent), out of a global population of the 1.3 billion as per 
Human Development Index (HDI), 2019. 
• 271 million people came out of poverty between 2005-15. However, as per Niti Aayog's SDG Index 2019, Indians have 
fallen back into poverty, hunger and income inequality in the past two years.  
• Measures taken for poor during the COVID include package under Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana, cash 
transfers under PM Kisan scheme, more liberal financing under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment 
Guarantee Act, 2005, empowering the poor, labourers, migrants through the Atma Nirbhar bharat scheme etc.  
• Poverty estimation in India is carried out by NITI Aayog’s task force through the calculation of poverty line based 
on the data captured by the National Sample Survey Office under the Ministry of Statistics and Programme 
Implementation (MOSPI). 
• Poverty line estimation in India is based on the consumption expenditure and not on the income levels. 
3.2. NOBEL PRIZE IN ECONOMICS 
Why in news?  
This year’s Nobel Economics Prize has 
been awarded to U.S. economists Paul 
Milgrom and Robert Wilson for their 
works on auction theory. 
More in news  
• They won the Nobel Economics Prize 
for improvements to auction theory 
and invention of new auction 
formats that could also be applied to 
selling of goods and services (such as 
radio frequencies) that are difficult to 
sell through traditional auction 
formats. 
• The discoveries have benefitted 
sellers, buyers and taxpayers around 
the world. 
What is auction theory?  
• It is a concept of transparent 
allocation of resources or items of business in a free market to the best bidder for optimum utilization.  
• It is a branch of applied economics and prescribes different sets of rules or designs for transactions. 
• Essentially, it is about how auctions lead to the discovery of the price of a commodity. Auction theory studies: 
o How auctions are designed? 
o What rules govern the auctions? 
o How bidders behave in auction? 
o What outcomes are achieved through auction? 
• Benefits of the auction theory: 
o It helps to understand the bidders’ behaviours 
o It helps in choosing the best design/format of the auction for various goods and services. 
o It also helps understand the evolving nature of auction and pricing of items and resources in a country or 
globally. 
What is an auction? 
• An auction is a price discovery mechanism of various goods and 
services.  
• In any auction, potential buyers place competitive bids on the 
goods and services (put for bidding) either in an open or closed 
format. 
• Generally, in any auction, the private entities want to maximize their 
revenue, whereas government may give priority to the factors 
other than maximizing revenue. 
• For instance, instead of allocating the spectrum to the highest bidder 
government may choose a bidder who would make the telecom 
accessible to the poor.  
o In fact in India, before auctions became the norm for limited 
resources such as radio waves, governments used to allocate 
them through licensing mechanism to the private entity best 
suited for ensuring social benefits like accessibility to the poor.  
o This approach, however, led to a proliferation of lobbying. 
• Key variables that determine the outcome of an auction: 
o Rules of the auction 
o Value (personal or professional) attached to the good put to 
vote 
o The uncertainty involved in bidding 
 
24                                                                               www.visionias.in                                                                        ©Vision IAS  
o It helps to understand the outcomes of different rules for auction and consequent final prices. 
o It also helps to understand why governments across the world should not put too much emphasis on 
maximizing revenues 
? For instance, in India the spectrum is allocated to the highest bidder; this is also one of the reasons 
why telecom sector is under heavy debt. 
? To avoid such problems in auction India should chose the ‘second-price’ auction theory that allows 
the winning bidder (or the highest bidder) to pay what the second-highest bidder offered. 
Individuals contributions 
• Winners curse:  Wilson worked on common value principle and opined that the rational bidders tend to place 
bids below their own best estimate of the common value to evade the winner’s curse. 
o It is possible to overbid ($50 when the real 
value is closer to $25) due to various 
reasons, in such cases one wins the 
auction but loses out in reality. 
• Multi stage bidding: Milgrom opined that 
private values differ from bidder to bidder. He 
demonstrated that an auction format will give 
the seller higher expected revenue when 
bidders learn more about each other’s 
estimated values (which depends on both 
private as well as common value) during 
bidding.  
o Therefore, allowing multi-stage bidding is 
a good way to get more value as every 
participant gets more time to 
match/outbid the previous highest bid.  
o He analysed the bidding strategies in a number of well-known auction formats, and demonstrated that an 
auction format will give the seller higher expected revenue when bidders learn more about each other’s 
estimated values during bidding. 
3.3. ASSET RECONSTRUCTION COMPANIES 
Why in News? 
Recently, former central bankers favored role of Asset reconstruction companies (ARCs) in insolvency resolution. 
About ARCs 
• ARC is a special type of financial institution that buys the debtors of the bank at a mutually agreed value and 
attempts to recover the debts or associated securities by itself.  
• Narsimham Committee – I (1991) envisaged setting up of a central Asset Reconstruction Fund to facilitate 
Banks to improve their balance sheets by cleaning up their non-performing loans portfolio. Later, Narsimham 
Committee – II (1998) proposed ARCs.  
• ARC is incorporated under the Companies Act and registered with Reserve Bank of India under the 
Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interest (SARFAESI) Act, 
2002.  
o RBI regulates ARCs as Non-Banking Financial Companies. 
• ARCIL was the first ARC set up by ICICI Bank, State Bank of India and IDBI. There are around 24 ARCs now and 
Edelweiss is the largest one. 
• Role of ARCs as defined under SARFAESI Act: 
o Acquisition of financial assets 
o Change or takeover of Management / Sale or Lease of Business of the Borrower 
o Rescheduling of Debts 
o Enforcement of Security Interest 
o Settlement of dues payable by the borrower 
Common value and Private value  
• These terms refer to the benefits that a person may derive 
from a particular good or service.  
• Common value: Common value is the real monetary value 
(realized as well as unrealized) of the goods/ services. It is 
same for everyone.  
o Examples include the future value of radio 
frequencies or the volume of minerals in a particular 
area or cost involved in a making a painting.  
• Private value: It is the personal value attached to the 
goods/ services by an individual. It differs from person to 
person.  
o An art loving person will value a painting more than a 
philistine; someone may attach his/her status to 
winning the auction at any cost. 
 
25                                                                               www.visionias.in                                                                        ©Vision IAS  
Advantages of ARCs 
• Centralization of bad loans in one or a few hands and provides scope for special legislative powers to a few 
ARCs rather than to each bank. 
• Regular banking relations are not affected as banks are left with cleaner balance sheets and do not have to 
deal with problem clients.  
• It can mix up good assets with bad ones, as it deals with a larger portfolio, and make a sale which is palatable 
to buyers. 
• Means of boosting the entrepreneur’s confidence, and gives other options than filing for bankruptcy or 
insolvency in times of stress.  
• Benefits whole economy as a previously non-performing asset is now with operationality and functionality. 
Investors will be able to spot an undervalued product, acquire it at low cost, work to restoring it somewhere 
nearer to its true value and sell it off for a healthy profit. 
Issues with ARCs functioning 
RBI’s Financial Stability Report (2019) indicates fairly low recovery for banks through the ARC model between 
2004 and 2018. The maximum average recovery by ARCs as a percentage of total bank claims stood at 21.5% in 
2010.  Since then, it has steadily declined and reached 2.3% in 2018. The key reasons for the non-performance 
of ARC model were: 
• Earlier, ARCs were required to hand over the distressed business back to the original promoter once they 
had generated enough value to repay the debt. Thus, they had little incentive to turn around distressed 
businesses. 
• ARCs were not adequately capitalized to meet the requirement of banks to transfer NPAs. 
• Valuation of NPA remains a concern as there is always a difference of opinion on recovery period, method of 
valuation, and data collection. 
• Difficult to expeditiously aggregate loans from all other creditors even if an ARC acquires the NPA of a 
particular bank. Also, developing and possessing requisite skill sets in managing the acquired distressed 
companies is a big challenge for ARCs. 
• Lack of flexibility in controlling structure of an ARC, as it is either owned by the private parties or the bank 
(i.e. not by the government) with restrictions on a controlling stake and minimum investment by a single 
party. 
• Regulatory ambiguty in functioning of ARCs. For ex: Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 (IBC) has provisions 
for submission of ‘resolution plans’ by financial entities (including an ARC), the SARFAESI Act does not 
explicitly permit ARCs to ‘invest’ in or acquire equity in firms. 
Way forward 
• Bridging NPA valuation gap by introducing set of guidelines to be carried out by an external agency before 
the sale. 
• Setting up of a Distressed Loan Sales Trading Platform for receiving bids for NPAs for better price discovery. 
• Preparing a panel of sector specific management firms/ individuals having expertise in running firms/ 
companies which could be considered for managing the (acquired distressed) companies. 
• A relaxation of controlling structure norm would encourage more private entities to have a presence in this 
sector bringing more depth to this sector. This will bring specialists into the game and the sector will be more 
competitive and transparent. 
3.4. SWAMITVA SCHEME 
Why in News? 
The SVAMITVA (Survey of Villages and Mapping with Improvised Technology in Village Areas) scheme was recently 
launched by the Prime Minister on the occasion of National Panchayati Raj. 
About SVAMITVA Scheme 
• It is a Central Sector Scheme that aims to provide an integrated property validation solution for rural India, 
engaging the latest Drone Surveying technology, for demarcating the inhabitant (Aabadi) land in rural areas. 
Page 5


 
22                                                                               www.visionias.in                                                                        ©Vision IAS  
3. ECONOMY 
3.1. POVERTY AND SHARED PROSPERITY 
Why in news? 
World Bank recently released the report titled “Poverty and Shared Prosperity 2020: Reversals of Fortune” which 
examines how the COVID19 crisis, compounding the risks posed by armed conflict and climate change, is 
affecting poverty trends, inclusive growth, and the characteristics of the poor around the world.  
Key findings 
• Reversal of extreme poverty trends: Extreme poverty is defined as living below the international poverty 
line of $1.90 or roughly Rs 145-150 per day. Global extreme poverty is expected to rise in 2020 for the first 
time in over 20 years mainly due to three reasons:  
o COVID-19 and its associated economic crisis:  
? Current projections suggest that, in 2020, between 88 million and 115 million people could fall 
back into extreme poverty as a result of the pandemic—returning global poverty rates to 2017 
levels—with even larger numbers in 2021.  
? South Asia will be the hardest hit region, with 49 million additional people pushed into extreme 
poverty followed by South Africa. 
o Armed conflicts:  
? More than 40 percent of the world’s poor now live in conflict-affected countries, a number 
expected to rise further in the coming decade.  
? Conflict destroys assets and livelihoods. In the Middle East and North Africa, for example, extreme 
poverty rates nearly doubled between 2015 and 2018, spurred by the conflicts in the Syria and 
Yemen. 
o Climate change:  
? Under present scenarios, the combined effects of climate change could push between 68 million 
and 132 million more people into poverty by 2030.  
? With their livelihoods predominantly based on primary activities, the poorest are least able to 
adapt, more vulnerable and less resilient to the impacts of climate change. The impacts of climate 
change can also raise food prices, worsen people’s health, and increase exposure to disasters.  
• Shared Prosperity: Shared prosperity is defined as the growth in the income of the poorest 40% of a country’s 
population. A high level of shared prosperity is an important indicator of inclusion and well-being in any 
country.  
o During 2012-2017, the growth was inclusive and the incomes of the poorest 40 per cent of the population 
grew at 2.3% per annum. However, average global shared prosperity may stagnate or even contract over 
2019-2021 due to the reduced growth in average incomes as a result of COVID crisis. This may lead to an 
increase in income inequality, resulting in a world that is less inclusive. 
• Changing profile of global poor: The poor remain predominantly rural, young, and undereducated. However, 
the current COVID crisis is creating  millions of “new poor.” The new poor” probably will:   
o be more urban than the chronic poor. 
o be more engaged in informal services and manufacturing and less in agriculture. 
Way forward suggested by the report 
• Policy responses need to reflect the changing profile of the poor : Safety net programs will in particular need 
to reach people in the informal sector in both rural and urban areas  
• Poverty action needs to address hot spots of conflict, climate change and COVID-19.  
• Learning lessons from emergency actions taken during COVID and long-term development experiences : 
o Closing the gap between policy aspiration and attainment: Much more attention needs to be given not 
just to “getting policies right” but to building the capability of the administrative systems that are tasked 
with implementing them.  
o Enhancing and improving data: Data limitations create doubts among the general public, obstruct 
scientific progress, and hinder the implementation of sound, evidence-based development policies. 
 
23                                                                               www.visionias.in                                                                        ©Vision IAS  
o Investing in preparedness and prevention: An example of successful international cooperation in disaster 
preparedness is the Indian Ocean Tsunami Warning and Mitigation System (IOTWMS) which is 
operational since 2013.  
o Expanding cooperation and coordination: The fact that all are affected in the current crisis is an 
opportunity for leaders to promote a sense of social inclusion and collective resolve, to improve the 
empirical foundations of policy making, and ensure that governments’ decisions are trusted.  
Poverty in India 
• India remains the home of 364 million poor people (28 percent), out of a global population of the 1.3 billion as per 
Human Development Index (HDI), 2019. 
• 271 million people came out of poverty between 2005-15. However, as per Niti Aayog's SDG Index 2019, Indians have 
fallen back into poverty, hunger and income inequality in the past two years.  
• Measures taken for poor during the COVID include package under Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana, cash 
transfers under PM Kisan scheme, more liberal financing under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment 
Guarantee Act, 2005, empowering the poor, labourers, migrants through the Atma Nirbhar bharat scheme etc.  
• Poverty estimation in India is carried out by NITI Aayog’s task force through the calculation of poverty line based 
on the data captured by the National Sample Survey Office under the Ministry of Statistics and Programme 
Implementation (MOSPI). 
• Poverty line estimation in India is based on the consumption expenditure and not on the income levels. 
3.2. NOBEL PRIZE IN ECONOMICS 
Why in news?  
This year’s Nobel Economics Prize has 
been awarded to U.S. economists Paul 
Milgrom and Robert Wilson for their 
works on auction theory. 
More in news  
• They won the Nobel Economics Prize 
for improvements to auction theory 
and invention of new auction 
formats that could also be applied to 
selling of goods and services (such as 
radio frequencies) that are difficult to 
sell through traditional auction 
formats. 
• The discoveries have benefitted 
sellers, buyers and taxpayers around 
the world. 
What is auction theory?  
• It is a concept of transparent 
allocation of resources or items of business in a free market to the best bidder for optimum utilization.  
• It is a branch of applied economics and prescribes different sets of rules or designs for transactions. 
• Essentially, it is about how auctions lead to the discovery of the price of a commodity. Auction theory studies: 
o How auctions are designed? 
o What rules govern the auctions? 
o How bidders behave in auction? 
o What outcomes are achieved through auction? 
• Benefits of the auction theory: 
o It helps to understand the bidders’ behaviours 
o It helps in choosing the best design/format of the auction for various goods and services. 
o It also helps understand the evolving nature of auction and pricing of items and resources in a country or 
globally. 
What is an auction? 
• An auction is a price discovery mechanism of various goods and 
services.  
• In any auction, potential buyers place competitive bids on the 
goods and services (put for bidding) either in an open or closed 
format. 
• Generally, in any auction, the private entities want to maximize their 
revenue, whereas government may give priority to the factors 
other than maximizing revenue. 
• For instance, instead of allocating the spectrum to the highest bidder 
government may choose a bidder who would make the telecom 
accessible to the poor.  
o In fact in India, before auctions became the norm for limited 
resources such as radio waves, governments used to allocate 
them through licensing mechanism to the private entity best 
suited for ensuring social benefits like accessibility to the poor.  
o This approach, however, led to a proliferation of lobbying. 
• Key variables that determine the outcome of an auction: 
o Rules of the auction 
o Value (personal or professional) attached to the good put to 
vote 
o The uncertainty involved in bidding 
 
24                                                                               www.visionias.in                                                                        ©Vision IAS  
o It helps to understand the outcomes of different rules for auction and consequent final prices. 
o It also helps to understand why governments across the world should not put too much emphasis on 
maximizing revenues 
? For instance, in India the spectrum is allocated to the highest bidder; this is also one of the reasons 
why telecom sector is under heavy debt. 
? To avoid such problems in auction India should chose the ‘second-price’ auction theory that allows 
the winning bidder (or the highest bidder) to pay what the second-highest bidder offered. 
Individuals contributions 
• Winners curse:  Wilson worked on common value principle and opined that the rational bidders tend to place 
bids below their own best estimate of the common value to evade the winner’s curse. 
o It is possible to overbid ($50 when the real 
value is closer to $25) due to various 
reasons, in such cases one wins the 
auction but loses out in reality. 
• Multi stage bidding: Milgrom opined that 
private values differ from bidder to bidder. He 
demonstrated that an auction format will give 
the seller higher expected revenue when 
bidders learn more about each other’s 
estimated values (which depends on both 
private as well as common value) during 
bidding.  
o Therefore, allowing multi-stage bidding is 
a good way to get more value as every 
participant gets more time to 
match/outbid the previous highest bid.  
o He analysed the bidding strategies in a number of well-known auction formats, and demonstrated that an 
auction format will give the seller higher expected revenue when bidders learn more about each other’s 
estimated values during bidding. 
3.3. ASSET RECONSTRUCTION COMPANIES 
Why in News? 
Recently, former central bankers favored role of Asset reconstruction companies (ARCs) in insolvency resolution. 
About ARCs 
• ARC is a special type of financial institution that buys the debtors of the bank at a mutually agreed value and 
attempts to recover the debts or associated securities by itself.  
• Narsimham Committee – I (1991) envisaged setting up of a central Asset Reconstruction Fund to facilitate 
Banks to improve their balance sheets by cleaning up their non-performing loans portfolio. Later, Narsimham 
Committee – II (1998) proposed ARCs.  
• ARC is incorporated under the Companies Act and registered with Reserve Bank of India under the 
Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interest (SARFAESI) Act, 
2002.  
o RBI regulates ARCs as Non-Banking Financial Companies. 
• ARCIL was the first ARC set up by ICICI Bank, State Bank of India and IDBI. There are around 24 ARCs now and 
Edelweiss is the largest one. 
• Role of ARCs as defined under SARFAESI Act: 
o Acquisition of financial assets 
o Change or takeover of Management / Sale or Lease of Business of the Borrower 
o Rescheduling of Debts 
o Enforcement of Security Interest 
o Settlement of dues payable by the borrower 
Common value and Private value  
• These terms refer to the benefits that a person may derive 
from a particular good or service.  
• Common value: Common value is the real monetary value 
(realized as well as unrealized) of the goods/ services. It is 
same for everyone.  
o Examples include the future value of radio 
frequencies or the volume of minerals in a particular 
area or cost involved in a making a painting.  
• Private value: It is the personal value attached to the 
goods/ services by an individual. It differs from person to 
person.  
o An art loving person will value a painting more than a 
philistine; someone may attach his/her status to 
winning the auction at any cost. 
 
25                                                                               www.visionias.in                                                                        ©Vision IAS  
Advantages of ARCs 
• Centralization of bad loans in one or a few hands and provides scope for special legislative powers to a few 
ARCs rather than to each bank. 
• Regular banking relations are not affected as banks are left with cleaner balance sheets and do not have to 
deal with problem clients.  
• It can mix up good assets with bad ones, as it deals with a larger portfolio, and make a sale which is palatable 
to buyers. 
• Means of boosting the entrepreneur’s confidence, and gives other options than filing for bankruptcy or 
insolvency in times of stress.  
• Benefits whole economy as a previously non-performing asset is now with operationality and functionality. 
Investors will be able to spot an undervalued product, acquire it at low cost, work to restoring it somewhere 
nearer to its true value and sell it off for a healthy profit. 
Issues with ARCs functioning 
RBI’s Financial Stability Report (2019) indicates fairly low recovery for banks through the ARC model between 
2004 and 2018. The maximum average recovery by ARCs as a percentage of total bank claims stood at 21.5% in 
2010.  Since then, it has steadily declined and reached 2.3% in 2018. The key reasons for the non-performance 
of ARC model were: 
• Earlier, ARCs were required to hand over the distressed business back to the original promoter once they 
had generated enough value to repay the debt. Thus, they had little incentive to turn around distressed 
businesses. 
• ARCs were not adequately capitalized to meet the requirement of banks to transfer NPAs. 
• Valuation of NPA remains a concern as there is always a difference of opinion on recovery period, method of 
valuation, and data collection. 
• Difficult to expeditiously aggregate loans from all other creditors even if an ARC acquires the NPA of a 
particular bank. Also, developing and possessing requisite skill sets in managing the acquired distressed 
companies is a big challenge for ARCs. 
• Lack of flexibility in controlling structure of an ARC, as it is either owned by the private parties or the bank 
(i.e. not by the government) with restrictions on a controlling stake and minimum investment by a single 
party. 
• Regulatory ambiguty in functioning of ARCs. For ex: Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 (IBC) has provisions 
for submission of ‘resolution plans’ by financial entities (including an ARC), the SARFAESI Act does not 
explicitly permit ARCs to ‘invest’ in or acquire equity in firms. 
Way forward 
• Bridging NPA valuation gap by introducing set of guidelines to be carried out by an external agency before 
the sale. 
• Setting up of a Distressed Loan Sales Trading Platform for receiving bids for NPAs for better price discovery. 
• Preparing a panel of sector specific management firms/ individuals having expertise in running firms/ 
companies which could be considered for managing the (acquired distressed) companies. 
• A relaxation of controlling structure norm would encourage more private entities to have a presence in this 
sector bringing more depth to this sector. This will bring specialists into the game and the sector will be more 
competitive and transparent. 
3.4. SWAMITVA SCHEME 
Why in News? 
The SVAMITVA (Survey of Villages and Mapping with Improvised Technology in Village Areas) scheme was recently 
launched by the Prime Minister on the occasion of National Panchayati Raj. 
About SVAMITVA Scheme 
• It is a Central Sector Scheme that aims to provide an integrated property validation solution for rural India, 
engaging the latest Drone Surveying technology, for demarcating the inhabitant (Aabadi) land in rural areas. 
 
26                                                                               www.visionias.in                                                                        ©Vision IAS  
o It aims to update the ‘record-of-rights’ in the revenue/property registers and issue property cards to the 
property owners in rural areas.  
• It is a collaborative effort of the Ministry of Panchayati Raj 
(MoPR) (Nodal Ministry for implementation of the scheme), 
State Panchayati Raj Departments, State Revenue / Land 
Records Departments and Survey of India (technology 
partner for implementation). 
• Key Components of the scheme 
o Establishment of CORS network: Continuously 
Operating Reference Stations (CORS) is a network of 
reference stations that supports establishment of 
Ground Control Points, which is an important activity 
for accurate Georeferencing, ground truthing and 
demarcation of Lands. 
o Large Scale Mapping (LSM) using Drone: Rural inhabited (abadi) area would be mapped by Survey of India 
using drone Survey to generate high resolution and accurate maps to based on which, property cards 
would be issued to the rural household owners. 
o Information, Education and Communication: Awareness program to sensitize the rural population about 
the surveying methodology and its benefits. 
o Enhancement of Spatial Planning Application “Gram Manchitra”: The digital spatial data/maps created 
under drone survey shall be leveraged for creation of spatial analytical tools to support preparation of 
Gram Panchayat Development Plan (GPDP). 
o Online Monitoring and reporting dashboard would monitor the progress of activities. 
o Program Management Units: The scheme will be implemented through the regular departmental 
mechanisms, which will be assisted by Programme Management Units at the National and State level. 
• Coverage: The Pilot Phase for the year 2020-21 will extend to six States (Haryana, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, 
Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand) covering approx. 1 lakh villages and CORS network 
establishment is planned for two States (Punjab and Rajasthan). 
o The scheme aims to cover all 6.62 lakh villages in the country by the end of financial year 2023-24. 
Intended Benefits of the scheme 
• Financial stability to the citizens in rural India: A ‘record of rights’ will enable rural households to use their 
property as a financial asset for taking loans and other financial benefits. 
• Enhanced collection of property tax: Updation of property and asset register will strengthen tax collection 
and demand assessment process of Gram Panchayats.  
o The 2018 Economic Survey estimated only 19% of the potential property tax was being collected by Gram 
Panchayats 
• Making land marketable: The property cards will help increase liquidity of land parcels in the market.  
• Reduction in property related disputes and legal cases: through creation of accurate land records.  
• Improved quality of GPDP: GIS maps of Gram Panchayat and community assets like village roads, ponds, 
canals, open spaces, school, Anganwadi, Health sub-centres, etc. can be used to prepare better-quality GPDP. 
o Further, these GIS maps and spatial database would also help in preparation of accurate work estimates, 
allocation of construction permits, elimination of encroachments, etc.for various works undertaken by 
Gram Panchayats and other Departments of State Government. 
• Aid relief work:  Accurate land records will make relief and compensation work easier in disaster affected 
areas. 
Potential issues in implementation of the scheme 
• Reluctance in community: Land and boundaries are sensitive topics among rural poeple, which can discourage 
them to participate in such policy reforms. 
• Exclusion of vulnerable people:  Dalits, women, tenant farmers and tribal communities are often excluded 
from accessing land, even though they may legitimately have a claim.  
• Lack of functional market in rural areas for the using land as a marketable collateral 
About Survey of India 
• It is the National Survey and Mapping 
Organization of the country under the 
Department of Science & Technology. 
• It was set up in 1767 and is the oldest 
scientific department of the Govt. of India.  
• It takes a leadership role in providing user 
focused, cost effective, reliable and quality 
geospatial data, information and intelligence 
for meeting the needs of national security, 
sustainable national development, and new 
information markets.  
Read More
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