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The Economy Observer: IMD expects normal rainfall in 2018

  • The Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) released its first forecast for the 2018 southwest monsoon (June-September) rainfall. It expects monsoon rainfall at 97% of the long period average (LPA). The agency has assigned 54%probability of a normal to above normal southwest monsoon rainfall.
  • IMD's April forecasts for southwest monsoon rainfall are not very reliable. They have deviated from the actual rainfall significantly in four out of the last five years.
  • With rising tensions about farmers' distress, general elections in 2019 and the fact that winter monsoon (January-February) rainfall in 2018 was the worst (only ~38% of normal rainfall) in at least 26 years, 2018 southwest monsoon holds special significance.