Newsletter: 27th November – 3rd December

INDIAN ECONOMY

State-run banks’ bad loans over Rs 6 lakh crore as on end-September 

Gross non-performing assets (NPAs), or bad loans, of public sector banks (PSBs) as on end-September rose to Rs 6,30,323 crore, as against Rs 5,50,346 crore at the end of the first quarter on June 30, Parliament was informed.

India ranked 102nd on enabling cross border trade: World Economic Forum 

India has improved its ranking by four places to 102nd position among 136 economies in terms of enabling cross border trade, with Singapore leading the list, the World Economic Forum (WEF).

Cash shortage may slowdown GDP to 6.5% in Oct-Dec quarter: Nomura 

Cash crunch post demonetisation is expected to slow down India’s GDP growth to 6.5 per cent for the fourth quarter of 2016 and is likely to spill over into the first quarter of 2017, says a report.

Demonetisation: BofA cuts India’s current fiscal growth forecast to 6.9% 

The Indian economy is going through a shallow recovery and GDP growth is expected to come down to 6.9 percent this fiscal following demonetisation, says a Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BofA-ML) report.

Demonetisation took a toll on manufacturing sector growth in November: PMI 

Demonetisation hampered manufacturing growth in November which softer expansion in new business inflows, a private survey showed. At 52.3 in November, the seasonally adjusted Nikkei India Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index was lower than the 22 month high of 54.4 in October.

Delhi, not Mumbai, India’s economic capital 

Mumbai ranks 31st among 50 top metropolitan economic entities globally in 2015, as per latest data released by Oxford Economics. The unflattering news for Mumbaikars is that the city has ceded its position as economic capital of India to Delhi.

NITI Aayog sets up CMs’ panel on road map for digital payment 

The government’s premier think tank NITI Aayog has constituted a committee of chief ministers to examine and promote the use of digital payment systems across the country. Andhra Pradesh chief minister Chandrababu Naidu is the convenor of the 13-member committee.

Rs 10,000 withdrawal allowed from Jan Dhan account in a month 

With deposits in Jan Dhan accounts swelling manifolds since the Reserve Bank of India has now started capping withdrawals in these accounts. In a notification issued on Wednesday RBI announced that withdrawals from Jan Dhan accounts would be capped at Rs 10,000 per month.

RBI raises MSS limit 20 times to Rs 6 lakh crore 

RBI has raised ceiling for market stabilisation scheme or MSS 20 times to Rs 6 lakh crore to suck excess cash out of the banking system and help banks earn some return from the deluge of deposits they have garnered after the government’s dramatic demonetisation move.

RuPay card usage jumps 118 per cent in 1st week of demonetisation 

RuPay card usage jumped by over 118.6 per cent in the week following demonetisation that took effect from November 8 mid-night while the overall debit and credit card transactions recorded an increase of 70.5 per cent.

BUSINESS

Jio Money, number portability game changer moves by Jio 

Reliance Jio Infocomm said it had signed up over 6 lakh customers every single day during the past three months. But the big gamechanger move came in the form of Jio Money as well as number portability along with the extension of freebies till March 2017.

Tata Power calls EGM on Dec 26 to remove Mistry from board 

Tata Power has called for a shareholders meet on December 26 to remove Cyrus Mistry as director, but the power firm’s board meet on Tuesday turned out to be a tame affair with discussion mostly centred on financial performance.

Malaysia’s Axiata looks to sell its 20% stake in Idea Cellular 

Axiata is looking to sell its 20% stake in Idea Cellular as it believes the Idea’s valuation will remain subdued for at least the next three years given the likelihood of a pricing onslaught stemming from the entry of Reliance Jio Infocomm.

Ricoh sacks 2, accepts CEO’s resignation 

Ricoh India on Sunday said it has terminated employment of its CFO Arvind Singhal and Senior VP and COO Anil Saini on finding that they have “caused grave loss to the company”. Ricoh India has also accepted resignation of MD and CEO Manoj Kumar.

Prem Watsa in queue to put money into Catholic Syrian Bank 

Fairfax Financial Holdings, owned by Canadian billionaire Prem Watsa, is close to picking up a controlling 51% stake in Kerala based Catholic Syrian Bank (CSB), one of India’s oldest private sector lenders, marking the first takeover of a local private bank by a foreign investor.

Tata Power to sell PT Arutmin stake for $247 million 

Tata Power will sell its 30 per cent stake in Indonesia-based coal company PT Arutmin for a sharply lower consideration of USD 246.64 million after entering into revised pacts that take into account certain prior liabilities.

BSNL’s operating profit jumps six-fold to Rs 3,855 crore in FY16 

State-owned Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) has reported nearly six-fold jump in operating profit during 2015-16 at Rs 3,855 crore from Rs 672 crore in the preceding fiscal, while revenue from operation turned out to be highest in the last five years.

Royal Bank of Scotland fails stress test: Bank of England 

The Royal Bank of Scotland is the worst prepared among Britain’s lenders for another financial crisis, the Bank of England said today, forcing the state- rescued lender into a new capital-raising plan.

Samsung, under investor pressure, considers split 

Tech giant Samsung Electronics, under pressure from shareholders to improve investor returns, said it will consider creating a holding company in what would be the biggest shake-up in its 47-year history. The move and a plan to raise dividends come after US hedge fund Elliott Management called for the South Korean firm to split itself into a holding vehicle and an operating company.

Airtel Payments Bank opens 10,000+ savings accounts in 2 days 

Over 10,000 customers opened savings accounts with Airtel Payments Bank within the first two days of the first payments bank in India going live, mostly in semi-urban and rural areas. It offers the highest annual interest rate of 7.25% and an insurance of Rs 1 lakh per account.

Apollo Hospitals subsidiary sells 29% to World Bank’s arm IFC 

Apollo HospitalsBSE 1.77 % today said its clinics subsidiary Apollo Health and Lifestyle has raised Rs 450 crore by selling 29 per cent equity stake to World Bank’s arm IFC, to fund its growth plans.

Chitra Ramkrishna Quits NSE, J Ravichandran Interim Chief 

Chitra Ramkrishna unexpectedly quit as chief executive officer of National Stock Exchange (NSE) on Friday, ending her 24-year career at the country’s largest bourse that she helped found. Ramkrishna, who took over as head of the exchange in 2013, quit due to personal reasons, NSE said in a press release after a board meeting. J Ravichandran, group president, will be in charge till the board appoints a new CEO, it said.

Bharat Forge acquires US-based WFT and PMT Holding 

Auto components major Bharat Forge said it has completed acquisition of US-based Walker Forge Tennessee LLC (WFT) and PMT Holdings Inc, USA for USD 14 million (around Rs 95 crore).

Plea in High Court against CIC refusal to give info on Tata-Docomo share transfer 

A plea has been moved in the Delhi High Court against the Central Information Commission’s (CIC) refusal to provide information regarding Tata Sons application to RBI in connection with purchase of Japanese telecom major NTT Docomo’s stake in Tata Teleservices Ltd (TTSL).

WORLD

OPEC agrees first output cut since 2008, Saudis to take “big hit” 

Opec has agreed its first limit on oil output since 2008, sources in the producer group told Reuters, with Saudi Arabia accepting “a big hit” on its production and agreeing to arch-rival Iran freezing output at pre-sanctions levels.

Euro zone jobless hits seven-year low, drops below 10 per cent 

The unemployment rate in the euro zone fell to a seven-year low in October, according to data published on Thursday, and has dropped below 10 percent for the first time since 2011.

China’s per-capita touches $ 8000, 70% poverty eradicated 

China has eradicated 70 per cent of poverty and the country’s per-capita GDP has grown to $ 8,000 due to three decades of economic development, according to a white paper issued

Net oil importer Indonesia leaves producer club OPEC, again 

Indonesia has suspended its membership of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), less than a year after rejoining the cartel, as the net oil importer said it could not agree to the group’s production cuts.

Donald Trump says he’s stepping out of his business empire 

President-elect Donald Trump said Wednesday that he’s leaving his business empire to focus on being the nation’s 45th president, bowing to pressure to avoid potential conflicts of interest between governing and profiting in the private sector.

Plane with Brazilian soccer team crashes in Colombia 

A chartered aircraft with 81 people on board, including a Brazilian first division soccer team heading to Colombia for a regional tournament final, has crashed on its way to Medellin’s International airport. Aviation authorities said there are reports of at least six survivors.

Greece targets trial return to markets in 2017, full return in 2018 – Deputy PM 

Greece aims to make a trial return to capital markets in the first half of 2017, which will pave the way for a full market return in 2018 when its programme ends, Deputy Prime Minister Yannis Dragasakis said.

Starbucks’s visionary CEO Howard Schultz stepping down 

Starbucks Chairman Howard Schultz, credited with taking the company from small beginnings to an international behemoth, is stepping down as CEO to focus on new high-end coffee shops, handing the reins to Chief Operating Officer Kevin Johnson.

Beijing to quit coal mining by 2020 

Beijing will close its last three coal mines in the next four years and entirely quit coal mining by 2020, ending an 800-year-old practice in a bid to curb alarming air pollution.

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