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World Steps Up to Study India's Cash Ban While Modi Looks Away

  • Economists said cash ban equal to 2 percentage point rate hike
  • Modi’s framing of cash ban as anti-graft moved helped in polls
Customers wait to exchange Indian five hundred and one thousand rupee banknotes at a bank in India on Nov. 15, 2016.
Customers wait to exchange Indian five hundred and one thousand rupee banknotes at a bank in India on Nov. 15, 2016.Photographer: Anindito Mukherjee/Bloomberg

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s administration hasn’t assessed the impact of one of history’s most sweeping changes in currency policy.

“No Madam,” was the Indian junior finance minister’s reply to a lawmaker’s question in parliament Dec. 14 on whether the government had studied the aftereffects of the move in November 2016 to invalidate almost all of the country’s currency overnight. One of the chief aims of the exercise was to curb corruption in Asia’s third-largest economy.