RBI Notifications

OBICUS Survey by RBI


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: OBICUS

Mains level: Not Much

The Reserve Bank of India has launched the latest round of quarterly order books, inventories and capacity utilization survey (OBICUS) of the manufacturing sector.

OBICUS is something new than we often get to hear from RBI…. Most recent was Ways and Means Advances. We can expect prelims question like- “Order books, inventories and capacity utilization survey (OBICUS) of the manufacturing sector is held by” – with options like NSSO, Labour Bureau etc.


  • OBICUS survey on the manufacturing sector is published quarterly by the RBI since March 2008.
  • It provides an insight into the demand conditions faced by the Indian manufacturing sector.
  • It covers over 2500 public and private limited companies in the manufacturing sector.
  • The company-level data collected during the survey are treated as confidential and never disclosed.

Items included in OBICUS

  • The information collected in the survey includes quantitative data on new orders received during the reference quarter, backlog of orders, pending orders, total inventories with a breakup between work-in-progress (WiP) and finished goods (FG) inventories and item-wise production.

Significance of OBICUS

  • The survey provides valuable input for monetary policy formulation.
  • It represents the movements in actual data on order books, inventory levels of raw materials and finished goods and capacity utilization.
  • These are considered as important indicators to measure economic activity, inflationary pressures and the overall business cycle.
  • The survey also gives out the ratio of total inventories to sales and ratio of raw material (RM) and finished goods (FG) inventories to sales in percentages.

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