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Monday, December 31, 2018

NIA to get chair professor soon

NIA to get chair professor soon
City: 

After the successful selection of its chief earlier this month, National Insurance Academy (NIA) — the only insurance institute in the country located in Pune — will soon get its chair professor (general insurance). NIA has already floated nominations for the position and it is expected that the institute will pick the candidate from among the public sector general insurance firms.

A search-cum-selection committee has been constituted by the NIA for this purpose. “It will make recommendations to the governing board for the appointment after interacting with the short-listed candidates,” said former NIA director Sushobhan Sarker.

In accordance with the decision taken at the NIA governing board meeting held on November 30, the institute is initiating the process of selection of chair professor (general insurance). According to a notification, a copy of which is available with FC, NIA has invited nominations for chair professor. “The position is meant for an eminent person who is from the general insurance stream of public sector units (PSUs). The indicated zone of consideration will be persons who are/have worked in the cadre of general managers. The applicant shall not be more than 62 years of age as on February 1, 2019,” the notification said. NIA is a premier insurance academy sponsored by the public sector insurance industry. Besides running a two-year flagship post-graduate diploma in insurance, it also conducts a variety of short duration courses for the Indian insurance industry.

As far as the salary of the proposed chair professor is concerned, it will be related to the scale of pay of professor at the academy. “The salary fixation will be done in a manner, which will protect the last salary drawn without taking into consideration perquisites received by the incumbent in his/her previous position,” the notification said.

Recently, G Srinivasan, former chairman-cum-MD at New India Assurance Company, has been appointed the director of NIA. His appointment is for a period of three years or until he attains the age of 65, whichever is earlier from the date of taking charge at his post.

NIA to get chair professor soon


Source: MDFC

Rahul Gandhi has all qualities to make an excellent PM: Tharoor

Rahul Gandhi has all qualities to make an excellent PM: Tharoor
City: 

Rahul Gandhi has all the right qualities to make an “excellent” prime minister, senior Congress leader Shashi Tharoor said on Sunday, even as he emphasised that the issue of PM candidate is likely to be decided after the 2019 polls “collectively” by the party and its allies.

Tharoor also said the recent assembly elections have made it clear that the Congress remains the only alternative political party with a pan-India presence, and therefore, would be the “natural fulcrum” for any national alliance. “Rahul Gandhi is our leader, which means that if Congress gets a majority, he will be PM. If Congress is in a coalition government, obviously wider discussions will be held with other coalition partners to arrive at a consensus candidate,” he said.

Tharoor said any decision on the PM candidate put forward by the Congress and its allies will take place through established processes and conventions which will have to be representative of the interests of the larger coalition. It will be a “collective decision” and, as is usually the case, this is only likely to be discussed after the election results, he said.

“At a personal level, having had several interactions and discussions in close quarters with the Congress president, to my mind it is evidently clear that Rahul ji has all the right qualities to make an excellent prime minister for the country,” Tharoor said when asked about Gandhi seemingly emerging as the opposition’s PM face despite them saying that a decision on it will be taken after polls.

He said Gandhi’s inclusive style of leadership, a willingness to reach across the political divide, the empathy extended towards aggrieved sections of the society, a commitment to the pluralist fabric of the country, paired with a distinctive charisma, humility and remarkable awareness, all suggest that he would be able to “fittingly live up to the expectations of the top job.”

“And at some level, one could argue that recent statements by non-Congress leaders reflect a growing confidence that Rahul is indeed the right man for the job,” the 62-year-old leader said.

His remarks assume significance as they come after DMK president MK Stalin had vowed to make Gandhi the country’s next prime minister and lauded him for having the ability to defeat the Narendra Modi-led government at the Centre.

Asked about Bollywood actor Naseeruddin Shah’s remarks on mob violence in India, Tharoor said the reactions and threats, and demonstrations against his public appearances, have been “unseemly and unwarranted.” “I have always maintained that the answer to an opinion must be another opinion. There simply can be no place for violence or a total disregard for individual liberties that have been enshrined in our Constitution such as the fundamental right of expression, in the democratic India of the 21st century,” he said.

Rahul Gandhi has all qualities to make an excellent PM: Tharoor


Source: MDFC

Triple talaq bill will ruin families: AIMWPLB

Triple talaq bill will ruin families: AIMWPLB
City: 

The All India Muslim Women Personal Law Board (AIMWPLB) on Sunday termed the triple talaq bill as one which will “ruin” families if its is made into a law, and said it will launch an agitation against it.

“The law should have been made according to the Quran. There should have been some scope for agreement. Talaq (divorce) happens when all options exhaust. If the proposed legislation becomes a means of punishment instead of relief for the people, then we will launch an agitation,” said Shaista Ambar, chairperson of AIMWPLB. She claimed the proposed legislation will ruin families.

Lok Sabha on Thursday passed the bill which criminalises the practice of instant triple talaq, with the government rejecting the contention that it was aimed at targeting a particular community.

The opposition, which had been demanding that the bill be referred to a ‘joint select committee,’ staged a walkout when its demand was rejected by the government.

The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill 2018 was passed by the Lower House with 245 voting in favour and 11 opposing the legislation. The bill will now go to Rajya Sabha for approval.

Triple talaq bill will ruin families: AIMWPLB


Source: MDFC

Bollywood flavour to boost tourism in Huntsville

Bollywood flavour to boost tourism in Huntsville
City: 

Tourism officials in Alabama are working hard for the opening of six places in Huntsville state, which were filmed in the Bollywood flick ‘Zero,’ with expectations that fans of Shah Rukh Khan, Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif would surely visit the places.

“The state is preparing for a rush of fans,” said Alabama tourism department deputy director Grey Brennan. “By visiting the actual locations where scenes from the movie were filmed, these fans will get a ‘Zero’ movie experience they will always remember,” emphasised Brennan.

“Huntsville is also home to US Space & Rocket Centre, the largest space flight museum in the world, which would definitely attract visitors,” he hoped.

In Alabama, the experience can include visits to Von Braun Centre, Hindu Cultural Centre of North Alabama, Huntsville Botanical Garden, Grille 29 and downtown Huntsville. One can also walk amid 27 rockets in the rocket garden and experience thrilling space-flight simulations.

Explaining the preparation, Brennon said, “The family-and-adult space camps would be a must for the visitors. You get to launch on simulated missions and train like an astronaut on the multi-axis trainer and 1/6th gravity chair.” However, people are required to make advance booking to have these experiences.

Bollywood flavour to boost tourism in Huntsville


Source: MDFC

Gravity: A year in bonds, macro and more

Gravity: A year in bonds, macro and more
The 10-year bond yield between the start of the year and now has barely moved. This masks a greater than 100 bps range intra- year and was accompanied by nothing less than full drama with respect to macro

Just by looking at year opening and closing bond yields, one may be forgiven in thinking that not much has gone by this year. Thus the 10-year government bond yield between the start of the year and at the time of writing has barely moved. As we know, however, this masks a greater than 100 bps range intra-year and was accompanied by nothing less than full drama with respect to Indian and global macro. The theme of this year-end piece is ‘gravity’. Apart from being the title of a favourite song, this word also marks a lot of goings on this year both in macro as well as in markets.

Shifting sands

To us the biggest theme of the year was the changing narrative on global growth. It is useful to put this in context by recalling some recent history. Post the Chinese devaluation and the associated force of gravity on commodities, the world entered a period of growth scare. However, we were pulled back from this through implicit policy coordination amongst the world’s large economies. Thus, China launched a mini stimulus to backstop growth deterioration whereas the US ‘talked down’ the dollar somewhat which resulted in some easing of global financial conditions. From there, the world entered into a phase of largely synchronised recovery which lasted till the better part of 2017 and which was possibly aided by the change in US presidency towards a more regulation light and pro fiscal policy. The one economy that bucked this trend of synchronised recovery and buckled to the force of gravity, however, was India. We actually slowed during this period and materially so. Most of this is probably attributable to India specific factors like demonetisation and the potential uncertainties around GST. However, the momentum had somewhat begun to slow over 2016 itself. Nevertheless, as these factors started stabilising India showed a strong recovery over first half of 2018.

Starting 2018, however, the world narrative on synchronised recovery started to shift. Thus the US was accelerating largely on a late cycle fiscal stimulus implemented by the Trump government. But many parts of the rest of the world, notably China, had started to feel some gravitational pull. This shift in theme had two major implications for emerging markets including India. One, export cycles started slowing with a decided skew getting created in world demand. Two, since growth was being led by the US, the dollar started to rise materially. Also, quite unhelpfully for India oil prices spiked during the year even has metals and soft commodities were largely subdued. This combination of rising dollar and higher crude was a potent mix for many emerging markets and particularly for large oil importers like India. There was rapid tightening in our financial conditions specifically over the third quarter of the calendar year which, alongside a slowing global export cycle, had obvious implications for growth.

Over the last couple of months of the year, there seems to be another shift to the global narrative. Gravity is after all a universal force. The phase of synchronised recovery that had given way to unsynchronised recovery for most of 2018 seemed to be moving into some sort of synchronized slowdown.  Thus parts of the US including housing and auto as well as business investments more generally seem to be losing momentum. Growth forecasts for next year are closer to the perceived longer term trend rate of growth versus the fiscal induced much-above-trend growth this year. Helping the narrative along are minor inversions in the US yield curve seen lately. At close of year, the markets have almost fully priced out any rate hikes from the Fed next year. The dollar versus emerging markets has come off as well thus helping financial conditions everywhere. Oil has experienced a brutal force of gravity, falling more than 1/3rd in a couple of months. Given these, a lot of pressure on India has subsided. Helping the turn has been our food CPI experiencing an exceptional gravitational pull as well and collapsing into deflation, thereby keeping us on course for a second successive year of sub 4 per cent CPI.

RBI’s reaction function

A lot of critique is opportunistically piled on to RBI’s door for consistently overestimating CPI, and sometimes remarkably so. However, in most cases this has been true for private forecasts as well. These errors tell more about the nature of the forecast variable itself rather than the process of forecasting. Nevertheless, there are enough lessons from CPI targeting thus far to start to appreciate that it is a difficult variable to forecast and even more difficult to target. So far most of our history with CPI targeting has been sanguine and has coincided with large downward changes in minimum support price (MSP) growth and rural wages. There have potentially been efficiency gains as well with better management of cereal inventory and possible fall in transportation costs. Many of these, it is to be noted, have little to do with monetary policy. The point here is that the efficacy of monetary policy to target a variable that is heavy on food and fuel and may also be responding to changes in cost of financing in the informal economy, may be limited. Thus the recent sanguine phase shouldn’t be wasted and the RBI/MPC should potentially start targeting some band on a consistent definition of real rates and link it to the assessed phase of the business cycle. Thus it can target a higher real rate band in a closed output gap scenario and so on. But we digress, and further exploration of this theme is best left to a future note.

In some ways, MPC’s rate setting has been the best inasmuch as it has tended to not react to extremes. Thus when talk was of ‘deflationary forces’ affecting the economy around mid of last year, it avoided reacted excessively, choosing to reluctantly offer one rate cut only. Then in the run up to this October’s policy when the consensus wanted substantial rate hikes to defend the rupee, it chose to focus on underlying CPI and merely contended itself with changing stance. This slower moving reaction function seems more apt when changing policy rates, which themselves only impact the real economy with a 2 – 3 quarter lag. If one has to fault at all, one could potentially have asked for more patience last year when RBI absorbed Rs 90,000 crores of permanent system liquidity via open market operations (OMOs) when currency in circulation (CIC) trends were still stabilizing and when its own analysis had deemed this excess liquidity as being largely non-inflationary. Similarly, one could have argued that pace of OMO purchases could have been stepped up earlier in the current year itself responding to the evolving balance of payment (BoP) situation and with the CIC calculations already pointing towards sizeable deficits later in the year. Nevertheless, the important thing is that the approach on liquidity is now solidly proactive with the central bank working on anticipated drain and not hesitating in providing forward guidance on liquidity creation.

There is a role for gravity here as well. Lately the narrative with respect to the RBI versus government has turned somewhat too simplistic. The primary hypothesis has been that the government wants RBI to do its bidding in a variety of ways and that the recent change in Governor will help facilitate these demands. These are matters of utmost gravity and one has to exercise due prudence in making such interpretations. First, there is enough evidence already of full continuity in monetary policy under the new governor. The preference of tool for liquidity creation remains OMOs rather than CRR, whereas the potential for monetary easing if CPI moves as envisaged had already been flagged by previous governor Patel in his last monetary policy. So to say that potential for monetary easing has now opened up is untrue. Amongst non-monetary policy considerations, a big item of debate has been the view that RBI is overly capitalized and that some part of its reserves should thus be transferred to the government. A committee, composed 50 per cent of current and ex RBI officials, has been formed that will study the matter and opine in due course. Again it is hard to envisage how this could have been much different had there been no change in governor at RBI. The point is to caution against excessively simplistic causations that give no benefit of doubt to what is the most important policy maker and an important custodian of the country’s macro-stability, the government.

Goings on in credit

The latter part of 2018 witnessed an important domestic development for our money markets: a wobble in the housing and non-bank finance (HFC / NBFC) market. Apparently triggered by default by a large NBFC, the financing market for all but the bluest of chip HFC / NBFCs seemed to dry up for a period of time over September – November. Thankfully, the financing issues have now been largely arrested without any major systemic accident, chiefly courtesy proactive liquidity provided by state run banks. As gravity presumably strikes to future balance sheet growth and as more generally credit flow to certain sub-sectors slows in an environment slowing growth momentum, it remains to be seen what happens to general asset qualities in some segments going forward.

An important development was in the credit markets in India. As risk aversion led by the HFC / NBFC episode took hold, one would have reasonably assumed the lowest rated assets to do the worst. Instead, we saw the spread between AA and A rated papers on an average dropping by a full 100 bps during this period! Exploring this unexpected imposition of gravity further, we found the underlying reason to be quite mundane but nevertheless concerning. A bulk of A rated and below category papers don’t trade and hence there is no actual price discovery in such papers. Whereas, AA had better price discovery from the market and hence felt the impact of the environment. This led to the massively counter-intuitive narrowing of spreads between the two.  It provides obvious food for thought to investors who anyway should be looking to move towards quality fixed income given the underlying macro backdrop of slowing growth and a more constrained fund raising environment for parts of the system.

The way forward

Given the massive shifts in macro and themes over the past year itself, any year ahead prognosis has to come with significant caveats. Thus ideally forecasts should be made for the real long term (when either one dies or averages catch up) or not at all. Nevertheless, fortified with year-end cheer and protected with assumptions generously made, we shall go ahead with at least a thesis for the next year. Thus the start point for the year is a possible phase of synchronised global slowdown developing. This largely means that the US is finally responding to the gravitational pull already in play for most of the rest of the world. If this sustains, it is obviously bullish for bonds including in India. Thus, our view for some time already has been that peak growth in India is past us and that owing to recent tightening of financial conditions and slowing global trade cycles, incremental momentum is set to slow. This saw early evidence in July – September growth data itself. Combined with the global backdrop of demand concerns and easing commodity prices, as well as local CPI also meaningfully surprisingly lower, this means that it is reasonable to look for easier monetary policy ahead. Indeed, our swap curve, which was pricing in more than 3 successive rate hikes a few months back, is already pricing in monetary easing over the next year. While the fall in bond yields has also been dramatic from the top, there is still more than enough value in quality bonds for the asset allocator, if this is indeed the turn of a global economic cycle. The current dramatic pace of OMOs will of course subside come April. This will probably narrow some of the very large spreads on AAA and state government bonds versus central government bonds. But if the global theme remains that of slowing growth and inflation and potential changes to reaction functions of large global central banks, then OMOs should not be the only dominant variable in thinking about the market. Neither is value on a risk – reward basis only limited to one area of duration. The one risk to be continually monitored in India will be the evolution of fiscal stance both in the run up to as well as post the general elections scheduled in the year.

The global theme itself may take one of many directions. The first, and probable best case, is that the gradual de-acceleration sustains which leads the Fed to back off completely and heralds a period of contained dollar strength and commodity prices. This will be good for emerging market bonds including India and will provide policy space to ease for local reasons if required. The second is that this slowdown accelerates accompanied with higher financial market volatilities. In such a case dollar may get safe haven bids and may strengthen alongside falling bond yields. However, this kind of dollar strength may not deter emerging markets like India from easing policy given that commodity prices will be weak in such a scenario and local growth impact could be substantial. The third could be that the current scare fades, trade tensions resolve, the recent resolve from China for measured accommodation yields results and the current deflationary fears fade completely. In such a case, there may be no case left for long duration bonds.

All told and taking into account recent events, it is prudent to for now stay with the theme of slower growth and higher market volatilities. In such a scenario, some significant adjustments need to be made to fixed income allocations away from credit and into quality fixed income. Most asset allocation has leaned heavily towards credit over the past few years.  This has been consistent with one phase of a cycle and needs to change if the cycle turns. Thus slowing growth and rising volatility is almost always associated with rising credit spreads. This is already happening elsewhere in the world but has barely started in India. Also, as in the case of A and below mentioned above, in some cases spreads have unjustifiably compressed in India only reflecting lack of liquidity. Thus there is significant price distortion in the lower rated part of the market which first needs to correct to earlier equilibrium and then rise further to reflect the new realities in credit markets.

Gravity: A year in bonds, macro and more


Source: MDFC

Govt proposes to invest Rs 1,227 cr through EDF

Govt proposes to invest Rs 1,227 cr through EDF
City: 

The government has proposed to contribute Rs 1,227 crore through electronic development fund to boost intellectual property rights in the field of information technology and electronics. According to information updated on ministry of electronics and IT, the total corpus recommended to be invested by 22 daughter funds in technology firms is around Rs 10,906 crore, in which government has proposed to contribute Rs 1,227 crore, subject to final approval of the EDF board.

When contacted about the status of EDF, a Meity official said the government has so far approved investment in 13 daughter funds.

Govt proposes to invest Rs 1,227 cr through EDF


Source: MDFC

New NHAI norms may slow down project awards

New NHAI norms may slow down project awards
City: 

The recently revised standard contract agreement for national highways Centrally-sponsored road works proposed to be implemented on EPC basis could lead to a decline in the pace of new project awards in the short to medium terms, with the pending land acquisition being a primary constraint, warns a report.

“While the pipeline of projects to be awarded remains strong with the Bharatmala Pariyojana gaining ground, the land acquisition issues could delay the awarding,” rating agency Icra said in a weekend report. The target for FY19 is to award 20,000 km projects with majority on the EPC mode.

“Given the land acquisition related issues, and stringent provisions in the revised EPC contract agreement, it is likely that the NHAI will proceed with awarding of contracts only once the land acquisition is in advanced stage,” it said.

New NHAI norms may slow down project awards


Source: MDFC

Provision coverage ratio of PSBs on rise, crosses 66%

Provision coverage ratio of PSBs on rise, crosses 66%
City: 

Public sector banks’ provision coverage ratio – which measures the provisioning for bad loans – has gone up from less than 50 per cent in 2015 to 66.85 per cent as of September 2018, reflecting improvement in their financial health, a senior official said.

The provision coverage ratio (PCR) gives an indication of the provision made against bad loans from the profit generated. Higher the PCR, lower is the unexposed part of the bad debts.

“The PCR of public sector banks has risen steeply from 46.04 per cent as of March 2015 to 66.85 per cent as of September 2018, giving banks cushion to absorb losses,” financial services secretary Rajiv Kumar said.

At the same time, various initiatives taken by the government have yielded results, with the bad loans of public sector banks (PSBs) declining by over Rs 23,000 crore from a peak of Rs 9.62 lakh crore in March 2018, he added.

“Gross non-performing assets (NPAs) of PSBs have started declining after peaking in March 2018, registering a decline of Rs 23,860 crore in the first half of the current financial year,” he said.

Pointing out that the consistent rise in PCR also indicates the adoption of discipline for making adequate provisions for NPAs, he said the government backed it up with adequate capital support.

This has been achieved while being compliant with capital requirement norms, he added.

Earlier this month, finance minister Arun Jaitley had said the government will invest an additional Rs 41,000 crore into state-owned lenders over and above what was announced earlier to strengthen their capital base. This would enhance the total recapitalisation in the current financial year from Rs 65,000 crore to Rs 1.06 lakh crore.

On December 20, the government sought Parliament’s approval for infusion of the additional Rs 41,000 crore into the lenders.

Jaitley had said that this would enhance the lending capacity of PSBs and help them exit the Reserve Bank of India's prompt corrective action (PCA) framework that imposes curbs on certain business operations of the banks.

Meanwhile, according to RBI data, banks have seen a significant improvement in recovery of stressed assets helped by the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) and amendments in the Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interests (SARFAESI) Act, during FY18.

In the financial year ended March 2018, banks recovered Rs 40,400 crore worth of bad loans as against Rs 38,500 crore recovered in FY17.

The various channels through which lenders recovered their bad loans include the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC), SARFAESI Act, debt recovery tribunals (DRTs) and Lok Adalats.

While banks recovered Rs 4,900 crore of bad loans through the IBC, the amount recovered through SARFAESI was Rs 26,500 crore in FY18, the RBI said in its annual report on the trends and progress of banking in 2017-18, released to over the weekend.

“Apart from vigorous efforts by banks for speedier recovery, amending the SARFAESI Act to bring in a provision of three months’ imprisonment in case the borrower does not provide asset details and for the lender to get possession of the mortgaged property within 30 days, may have contributed to better recovery,” the report highlighted.

During the year, recovery through Lok Adalats and DRTs declined alongside the number of cases referred, partly indicative of the growing clout of the IBC mechanism for resolution of stressed assets, the monetary authority noted.

The average recovery through IBC is greater than other mechanisms (SARFAESI, DRTs and Lok Adalats) and is also improving gradually, pointing to the need and efficiency of such a channel, the report said.

“Strengthening the infrastructure of the insolvency resolution process, including the proposed increase in the number of benches of the National Company Law Tribunals (NCLTs), should help reduce the overall time currently being taken for resolution under the IBC,” the RBI said.

Besides recovery through various resolution mechanisms, banks are also cleaning up theirs balance sheets through sale of doubtful/loss assets to assets reconstruction companies (ARCs) and other banks/NBFCs/financial institutions by taking haircuts, the report said.

During 2017-18, the acquisition cost of ARCs as a proportion to the book value of assets, has gone up, indicating better realisations by banks on sale of stressed assets.

While private sector banks have been most aggressive on asset sales, state-run lenders lagged, mainly owing to large haircuts and various management issues, the report said.

Provision coverage ratio of PSBs on rise, crosses 66%


Source: MDFC

Govt seen going full throttle on labour reforms

Govt seen going full throttle on labour reforms
City: 

The Centre will spare no effort to push through some key labour reforms in the new year and is expected to get Parliament’s nod on at le­ast two codes on wages as well as industrial relations be­fore going to general elections. The labour ministry is alr­­eady in the process of seeki­ng the Union cabinet’s app­r­o­­val on amended wage code bi­ll after its vetting by the pa­r­­liamentary standing comm­i­­ttee, so that it could be pu­s­h­­ed for passage in Parliam­e­nt.

The Code on Wages Bill 2017 was introduced in the Lok Sabha on August 10, 2017 and thereafter referred to the standing committee.

Similarly, the labour ministry is keen to push the passage of Code on Industrial Relations, in the run-up to the 2019 polls.

The ministry, however, has decided to remove cert­a­in provisions in the bill, dr­a­wing flak from trade unions.

In line with the recommendations of the Second National Commission on Labour, the ministry has taken steps for formulating four labour codes on wages; industrial relations; social security and welfare; and occupational safety, health and working conditions by amalgamating, simplifying, and rationalising the relevant provisions of the existing central labour laws.

“Keeping the social secur­ity and welfare aspects of workmen better and intact, we are working in the direct­i­on of bringing reforms in various labour laws with obj­e­ctive of ease of doing busin­e­ss in new future,” labour minister Santosh Gangwar said. The minister also said that the government has taken several new initiatives in the labour and employment sector this year.

The ministry is also working on Code on Social Security & Welfare.

Govt seen going full throttle on labour reforms


Source: MDFC

Jet Airways in talks with SBI for Rs 1,500 cr loan

Jet Airways in talks with SBI for Rs 1,500 cr loan
City: 

Loss-making carrier Jet Airways is in discussions with the State Bank of India for raising Rs 1,500 crore short-term loan to meet its working capital requirement and some payment obligations, a source said. Jet Airways strategic partner and Middle-east carrier Etihad, which   h holds 24 per cent stake in the Indian full service carrier, is likely to provide guarantee for the loan, he said.

Significantly, the talks for availing loan are going on at a time when EY is carrying out a forensic audit of the Jet Airways on the orders of the airline’s largest lender for alleged irregularities. “Jet Airways is in discussions with its largest lender to SBI for raising short-term loans worth Rs 1,500 crore. The airline is looking to mop up these funds to meet its working capital requirement as well as for meeting some payment obligations. Jet Airways is expected to provide Etihad Airways’ guarantee for this financing,” an airline source told PTI.

The Naresh Goyal-controlled airline, which has posted three consecutive quarterly losses of over Rs 1,000 crore each since March, already has as much as Rs 8,052 crore of debt on its books as on September 30.

Rating agency Icra has already cut the rating on Jet Airways borrowing programmes. When contacted, SBI spokesperson said, “It is the policy of the bank not to comment upon individual accounts and its treatment”.

While Jet Airways did not respond to PTI queries on this issue, an Etihad Airways in an e-mail response to PTI from Abu Dhabi said, it “does not comment on rumour or speculation”.

“Jet Airways has been seeking these funds as its earlier proposal of raising $350 million Etihad-guaranteed loan from overseas lenders is still at the negotiations table and expected to take time,” the source said who is privy to both the discussions. With its financials in perils and the airline facing cash drought, promoter Goyal is looking to infuse capital in a manner where he does not have to lose control of the Jet Airways, which he set up 25 years ago.

At an emergency board meeting late this month, he asked his team to look for alternate routes of funding while resurrecting the airline.

His airline has already held preliminary level discussions with Tata Group for a possible stake sale a couple of months ago. However, reportedly “unhappy” over the deal, he turned back to his Gulf friend once again to rescue the airline.

In 2013, Etihad had bailed out Jet Airways by acquiring 24 per cent stake in the airline for Rs 2,060 crore, besides extending low-interest loan of $150 million as well as purchasing 50.1 per cent stake in its loyalty programme JetPrivilege.

Jet Airways in talks with SBI for Rs 1,500 cr loan


Source: MDFC

Tamil Nadu TNPSC Combined Civil Services I Main exam results announced, how to check

Tamil Nadu TNPSC Combined Civil Services I Main exam results announced, how to check


Source: TIE

Bigg Boss 12 finale

Bigg Boss 12 finale


Source: TIE

Russian president Vladimir Putin continues tradition, plays ice hockey at Moscow’s Red Square

Russian president Vladimir Putin continues tradition, plays ice hockey at Moscow’s Red Square


Source: TIE

Happy New Year 2019 Advance Wishes Images, Status, Quotes, Wallpapers, SMS, Messages, Photos, Pics, Videos

Happy New Year 2019 Advance Wishes Images, Status, Quotes, Wallpapers, SMS, Messages, Photos, Pics, Videos


Source: TIE

India are real deal now, they don’t struggle overseas anymore, says Allan Border

India are real deal now, they don’t struggle overseas anymore, says Allan Border


Source: TIE

5 ways to enjoy New Year’s Eve when you’re pregnant

5 ways to enjoy New Year’s Eve when you’re pregnant


Source: TIE

Micromax Infinity N12 review: Can this help forge a comeback for the brand?

Micromax Infinity N12 review: Can this help forge a comeback for the brand?


Source: TIE

India vs Australia: Familiar demons to follow Australia into New Year’s Test

India vs Australia: Familiar demons to follow Australia into New Year’s Test


Source: TIE

Inside SS Rajamouli’s son SS Karthikeya’s wedding

Inside SS Rajamouli’s son SS Karthikeya’s wedding


Source: TIE

Realme to expand offline sales partnerships to 150 cities in 2019

Realme to expand offline sales partnerships to 150 cities in 2019


Source: TIE

Fitbit Charge 3 with OLED display, heart rate sensor launched in India: Price, specs

Fitbit Charge 3 with OLED display, heart rate sensor launched in India: Price, specs


Source: TIE

PM Modi congratulates Sheikh Hasina on win in Bangladesh elections, reiterates India’s support

PM Modi congratulates Sheikh Hasina on win in Bangladesh elections, reiterates India’s support


Source: TIE

‘Who killed Sohrabuddin investigation?’ Arun Jaitley counters Rahul Gandhi

‘Who killed Sohrabuddin investigation?’ Arun Jaitley counters Rahul Gandhi


Source: TIE

Delhi metro pink line: Lajpat Nagar-Mayur Vihar Pocket 1 corridor inaugurated, services to start from 4 pm

Delhi metro pink line: Lajpat Nagar-Mayur Vihar Pocket 1 corridor inaugurated, services to start from 4 pm


Source: TIE

Rajasthan govt gives 1 per cent reservation to backward classes in state judicial services

Rajasthan govt gives 1 per cent reservation to backward classes in state judicial services


Source: TIE

India vs Australia: Assured visitors sniff maiden series win in Sydney

India vs Australia: Assured visitors sniff maiden series win in Sydney


Source: TIE

TNDTE diploma result 2018: Know date and time

TNDTE diploma result 2018: Know date and time


Source: TIE

No interim relief for Bhim Army rally in Pune

No interim relief for Bhim Army rally in Pune


Source: TIE

Colorado man accused of killing missing fiancee due in court

Colorado man accused of killing missing fiancee due in court


Source: TIE

Richa Chadha on her 2018: The year has given me clarity and courage

Richa Chadha on her 2018: The year has given me clarity and courage


Source: TIE

Rohit Sharma and Ritika Sajdeh blessed with baby girl

Rohit Sharma and Ritika Sajdeh blessed with baby girl


Source: TIE

MTV Ace of Space host Vikas Gupta: The makers are already planning the next season

MTV Ace of Space host Vikas Gupta: The makers are already planning the next season


Source: TIE

What Indians viewed on YouTube in 2018: UPSC, IBPS exam preparation to learning farming practices

What Indians viewed on YouTube in 2018: UPSC, IBPS exam preparation to learning farming practices


Source: TIE

Delhi shivers at 3.8 degrees Celsius, air quality drops to ‘severe’

Delhi shivers at 3.8 degrees Celsius, air quality drops to ‘severe’


Source: TIE

Zero, Thugs of Hindostan, Race 3: Presenting the Khans’ box-office report of 2018

Zero, Thugs of Hindostan, Race 3: Presenting the Khans’ box-office report of 2018


Source: TIE

1984 anti-Sikh riots case: Sajjan Kumar likely to surrender today

1984 anti-Sikh riots case: Sajjan Kumar likely to surrender today


Source: TIE

SWAYAM exam 2019: Last date to register today, check how to apply

SWAYAM exam 2019: Last date to register today, check how to apply


Source: TIE

Return to sender: Roger Federer looking forward to Serena William’s serve

Return to sender: Roger Federer looking forward to Serena William’s serve


Source: TIE

Cyber attack disrupts printing of major newspapers

Cyber attack disrupts printing of major newspapers


Source: TIE

Kerala Win Win Lottery W-493 Results Today: Winners to be announced shortly

Kerala Win Win Lottery W-493 Results Today: Winners to be announced shortly


Source: TIE

Mumbai: Work to give makeover to CSMT junction on lines of Times Square to start from January 15

Soon, the work to give a makeover to Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus (CSMT) junction on the lines of New York’s Times Square to start from January 15.

According to Indian Express, this makeover includes delineated traffic lanes, walking, resting zones, and multiple access, exit points. This makeover of the CSMT junction was proposed by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) and an American organisation. The junction will be redesigned by the National Association of City Transportation Officials-Global Designing Cities Initiative (NACTO-GDCI) under BIGRS (Bloomberg Philanthropies Initiative for Global Road Safety).

Vinod Chithore, chief engineer, roads and traffic department told the leading daily, “From January 15, we will conduct trials without any permanent changes at first. If it is successful, then we will make permanent changes. The area has high footfall and it is a critical junction to be redesigned.”

On the similar lines, 20 junctions across the city will be redesigned, the initiative includes Dr Annie Besant Road, B R Ambedkar Road, Jijabai Bhosle Marg, Jogeshwari Vikhroli Link Road, P D’Mello Road, Santacruz Chembur Link Road, Senapati Bapat Marg, V N Purohi Marg.



Source: FPJ

Congo votes in long-delayed presidential election

Kinshasa: People in Congo have begun voting in a long-delayed presidential election that could bring the troubled country’s first peaceful, democratic transfer of power. Some unrest is feared in the election after a last-minute decision to bar an estimated one million people from voting because of a deadly Ebola virus outbreak in the country’s east. The decision has been widely criticised as threatening the credibility of the election.

Two main opposition candidates, Martin Fayulu and Felix Tshisekedi, are challenging President Joseph Kabila’s preferred successor, former interior minister Emmanuel Ramazani Shad­ary, who is under sanctions from the European Union. Amid rainy weather in the capital, Kinshasa, Kabila and Shadary voted at the central Gombe Institute polling station.

“My message today to my compatriots is to come and vote for their candidates and brave the rain,” said Kabila, after voting. Shadary called for “peace and calm”, adding, “I am very confident in victory because the Congolese people will trust me, I campaigned all over the country.”



Source: FPJ

Take part in ‘Dry January’ challenge to stay healthy and wealthy in 2019

London: Taking part in ‘Dry January’ challenge, which involves abstaining from alcohol for the first month of the new year, can help people regain control over their drinking and spending, as well as boost health, a study has found. Researchers from University of Sussex in the UK took data from over 800 people who took part in Dry January in 2018.

The results showed that Dry January participants were drinking less in up to August. They reported that frequency of being drunk dropped from 3.4 per month to 2.1 per month on average. “The simple act of taking a month off alcohol helps people drink less in the long term: by August people are reporting one extra dry day per week,” said Richard de Visser, from the University of Sussex.

There are also considerable immediate benefits: nine in ten people save money, seven in ten sleep better and three in five lose weight,” he said. “These changes in alcohol consumption have also been seen in the participants who didn’t manage to stay alcohol-free for the whole month – although they are a bit smaller.

This shows that there are real benefits to just trying to complete Dry January,” said de Visser. The research showed that 88 per cent saved money; 70 per cent had generally improved health; 71 per cent slept better; and 58 per cent lost weight. De Visser’s findings come from three self-completed online surveys: 2,821 on registering for Dry January; 1,715 in the first week of February; and 816 participants in



Source: FPJ

Janhvi Kapoor looks an absolute CHIC on the cover page of a magazine; see pic

Ghazipur violence: 27 arrested so far after constable’s death during stone-pelting

Ghazipur: Twenty-seven people have been arrested so far in connection with the Ghazipur stone pelting that claimed the life of a police constable, Superintendent of police (SP) Ghazipur said on Monday.

Police Constable Suresh Vats was killed and two civilians were injured on December 29 after some members of a protest rally, organised by Nishad Party, allegedly hurled stones on them near Naunera area in Ghazipur.

The cop was deployed at Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s rally in Ghazipur and was returning from the event when the incident took place. Meanwhile, Union Minister and Uttar Pradesh MP Mahesh Sharma said that the incident was reactionary and shouldn’t be politicised.

“It is unfortunate, but this should not be linked with the law and order situation in the state. It was a reactionary incident. The Chief Minister took immediate action after taking cognisance of it,” Sharma told ANI.



Source: FPJ

Moscow open for talks: Vladimir Putin to Donald Trump

Moscow: Russian President Vladimir Putin, in a New Year letter to his US counterpart Donald Trump, said on Sunday Moscow was ready for dialogue on a “wide-ranging agenda”, the Kremlin said.

At the end of November, Trump abruptly cancelled a planned meeting with Putin on the sidelines of a G20 summit in Argentina, citing tensions about Russian forces opening fire on Ukrainian navy boats and then seizing them.
“Vladimir Putin stressed that the Russia-United States relations are the most important factor for providing strategic stability and international security,” a Kremlin statement said. “He confirmed Russia is open for dialogue with the USA on the most wide-ranging agenda.”

In a separate letter to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, Putin pledged continuation of aid to the Syrian government and people in the “fight against terrorism, in defence of state sovereignty and territorial integrity”.
Putin also sent New Year greetings to other world leaders, including Prime Ministers Theresa May of Britain and Shinzo Abe of Japan, as well as Chinese President Xi Jinping.

Putin wished “well-being and prosperity to the British people,” the Kremlin said. Russia’s embassy in London said on Friday Moscow and London had agreed to return some staff to their respective embassies after they expelled dozens of diplomats early this year.

Britain expelled 23 Russian envoys over accusations the Kremlin was behind a nerve toxin attack in March on former double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter in the English city of Salisbury. Russia, which denies any involvement in the poisoning, sent home the same number of British embassy workers in retaliation.



Source: FPJ

Hyderabad HC sets aside ED’s order of Rs 822 cr worth fixed deposits belonging to Tech Mahindra

In what may be considered as a relief to Tech Mahindra, High court has set aside provisional attachment order passed by Enforcement Directorate (ED). Thus, staying the ED’s order for attachment of Fixed deposits may enhance the Company’s liquidity amidst global uncertainty, specially over partial US government shutdown and Tradewar.



Source: FPJ

Rahul Gandhi should ask who killed Sohrabuddin investigation: Arun Jaitley

New Delhi: Taking Congress head on over the Sohrabuddin case, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said the appropriate question for party president Rahul Gandhi to ask would be, who killed the investigation in this case.

The Special CBI Judge, Mumbai, who deals with CBI cases had acquitted all accused in Sohrabuddin case, the minister said, adding “more relevant than the Order of the Acquittal is the observation of the Judge that in the investigation, from the very beginning, Investigating Agency did not investigate the case professionally in order to find out the truth but to divert it towards certain political persons.”  

Responding to the comment of Gandhi on the day of the judgement that ‘nobody killed Sohrabuddin’, Jaitley said, “it would have been more appropriate if he had asked the right question, namely who killed Sohrabuddin case investigation, he would have got the right answer.” Jaitley in his Facebook post titled: ‘Who killed the Sohrabuddin Investigation’ said that those who have recently shown a belated concern for institutional independence, “should seriously introspect as to what they did to the CBI when they were in power.”     

The Minister further said that as Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, he had written a letter to the then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on September 27, 2013, detailing the politicisation of the investigation in the Sohrabuddin, Tulsi Prajapati, Ishrat Jahan, Rajinder Rathore and the Haren Pandya cases. “Every word of what I have said in the letter, over the next five years, have proven to be true. This is an irrefutable evidence of what the congress did to our investigative agencies,” Jaitley said.

Earlier this month, a special CBI court acquitted all the 22 accused in the Sohrabuddin case. The Court while passing its judgement also said that the CBI probed the alleged fake encounter killings of gangster Sohrabuddin Shaikh, his wife Kausar Bi and his aide Tulsi Prajapati with a ‘pre-conceived and premeditated’ theory to implicate political leaders.



Source: FPJ

Bangladesh elections 2018: PM Modi greets Sheikh Hasina on re-election, assures India’s continued support

Dhaka: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday congratulated his Bangladeshi counterpart Sheikh Hasina on registering a landslide win in the general elections and assured her of India’s continued support to the country’s developmental strides.

Hasina’s ruling Awami League-led alliance has won over 267 seats in the 300-member Parliament, according to the latest report released by the Election Commission (EC).

Prime Minister Modi had a telephonic conversation with his Bangladeshi counterpart Hasina following the results, press secretary of Bangladesh Prime Minister Ihsanul Karim told PTI. During the talks, Modi said that “Hasina’s victory was the reflection of Bangladesh’s stunning development under her dynamic leadership”, according to Karim.

“Prime Minister Modi assured her of India’s continued support to Bangladesh’s developmental strides,” the press secretary added.

According to the EC, Hasina’s alliance has won the parliamentary vote with a thumping majority. The main opposition has rejected the “farcical” elections which claimed 18 lives and left over 200 injured, making it one of the deadliest polls in the country.

The opposition National Unity Front led by the Bangladesh Nationalist Party – which has been out of power for 12 years and had boycotted the 10th general elections in 2014 – managed to secure only seven seats.



Source: FPJ

Mrinal Sen versus Satyajit Ray: The war of words that lasted nearly 30 years

United State lawsuit against Google dismissed

San Francisco: A judge in Chicago has dismissed a lawsuit that alleged that Google violated privacy of users by using facial recognition technology to scan their photos without their explicit consent.

In the original suit, which was filed in March 2016, a woman sued Google for allegedly uploading her data to Google Photos and scanning it to create a template of her face without her permission, The Verge reported on Saturday.

The judge dismissed the suit citing lack of “concrete injuries”. The suit alleged that Google violated the Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act, recognised as the toughest biometric privacy law in the US.

The law requires companies to obtain people’s explicit permission to make biometric scans of their bodies. Besides Google, Snap­chat, and Facebook also faced lawsuits for allegedly violating the Illinois law. Of the three companies, Google is the first to win a dismissal of a lawsuit over the biometric privacy act, The Verge report said.



Source: FPJ

Asian stocks rise over hopes of easing US-China trade war

Equities gained in Hong Kong and Australia, along with S&P 500 Index futures, after Donald Trump said in a tweet that negotiations were “moving along very well” toward a comprehensive deal
Source: LM

PPF regains the crown with the best returns

Investors in 2019, who look at 2018 returns and rush to invest in PPF, FDs and gold, may be making a similar mistake. Instead, a well-balanced portfolio with some investments in safe products and some in equity would be a better choice.
Source: LM

Commodity cycle favourable for India, but risks remain

Compared to the beginning of the year, more of India’s macroeconomic indicators are in the red now, Mint’s Macro Tracker shows
Source: LM

Rupee gains against US dollar, set for worst route since 2011

At 9.15am, the rupee was trading at 69.81 a dollar, up 0.18% from previous close. The currency opened at 69.79
Source: LM

How high can ‘safe-haven’ gold go?

It isn’t entirely surprising that gold prices rose to a six-month high last week, after worries about the economic outlook caused volatility. But the so-called safe haven support for the precious metal may have played its course, say some analysts
Source: LM

With volumes on the mend, will 2019 mark a turnaround for textiles exporters?

India’s market share in home textile exports to the US in October increased one percentage point from the year ago to 33%
Source: LM

Safety shines in a volatile year

Postive news on economic growth and good corporate earnings accompanied by softening inflation towards the end of the year were bright spots that provided support for the markets
Source: LM

Deals cross $100 billion mark in record-breaking 2018

The year saw increased buyouts and high activity in sectors like infrastructure, realty
Source: LM

High quality IPOs, QIPs to witness strong investor appetite in 2019

DIIs will continue to invest in markets and IPOs/ QIPs as they are getting record inflows in the form of SIPs
Source: LM

Muted LPG demand may prove to be worrying trend for Aegis’ earnings

Lower LPG demand increases the risk of slowdown in LPG imports especially with steady domestic LPG production
Source: LM

Conventional energy is back, will valuations follow suit?

A steady rise in demand began pushing up utilization levels, and as fuel supplies lagged demand, prices in the spot electricity market shot up. But insufficient coal and high maintenance shutdowns weighed on earnings
Source: LM

Proactive approach helped beat volatility

Keeping an open line of communication with clients and keeping them focussed on goals and tenure helps
Source: LM

Need to keep financial goals in mind

For a disciplined investor, having an eye on her financial goals, market volatility can be good sometimes
Source: LM

The year when communication with clients mattered the most

Communication from asset managers also helps in hand holding through periods of change and volatility
Source: LM

A year when conservative investors gained the most

The more conservative investors got with their investments this year, the better off they were
Source: LM

Motilal Oswal’s 10 stock picks for 2019

Titan, ICICI Bank, Oberoi Realty, L&T, Infosys and Marico are among the top picks of domestic brokerage Motilal Oswal for 2019
Source: LM

Why long-term investors need to stay the course

Investors who have been in equities for 4-5 years have mostly taken volatility in their stride
Source: LM

Keeping clients prepared for market volatility is the key

Deepali Sen ensures that her clients only concern themselves with meeting their financial goals
Source: LM

Oil prices rise, but set for first annual decline since 2015

Oil prices edged higher on the last trading day of the year on Monday, taking a cue from firmer stock markets, but remain on track for the first yearly decline in three years amid concerns of a supply glut
Source: LM

Emerging markets seen bringing more pain to investors in 2019

Almost all emerging Asian currencies are expected to weaken by the end of June, while bond yields are forecast to rise for countries including Indonesia, India and Thailand, according to report.
Source: LM

Bad liquidity or bad markets? Traders weigh in on stock tumult

More than $5 trillion has been erased from US stock values in the last three months as the S&P 500 slid within points of a bear market
Source: LM

Five questions to ask while investing in direct stocks

Direct equity investors not only benefit from dividends but also from the share price appreciation
Source: LM

Meghalaya mishap: Navy team leader, NDRF personnel enters mine shaft

The Navy divers are likely to go inside the vertical shaft of the rat-hole coal mine Sunday, the SP said
Source: LM

US dollar share of global currency reserves hits near five-year low: IMF

Global reserves are assets of central banks held in different currencies, primarily used to support their liabilities
Source: LM

Why 2018 will be a landmark year for India-US strategic relationship

India was among the few countries, which received a waiver on Iran sanctions from the Trump administration
Source: LM

2018 round-up: Tax on cryptocurrencies

There is not enough clarity on whether cryptocurrencies must be treated as capital assets or whether the gains must be classified as income from other sources, said Archit Gupta, founder and CEO of Clear Tax.
Source: LM

Humans, machines and markets: Why US stocks going crazy is nothing new

Investors have time to reflect on history, now that stocks have avoided a fourth straight down week via the biggest one-day rally since 2009
Source: LM

No respite for cost of remittance

In terms of funds, remittance saw the lowest inflow from investors in 2018 while it was led by lending and payments
Source: LM

Three ways to buy gold in paper form

You have an option to invest in gold through the mutual fund route as well. The underlying asset in a gold mutual fund is gold ETF.
Source: LM

Income tax changes in 2018: Key things to know

While the changes to the deduction limit spelled trouble for those in the higher income bracket in 2018, it offered relief to senior citizens
Source: LM

US stocks fall as volatility rules in wild week

Global stocks are set for the worst year since 2008 and oil is mired in its steepest quarterly slump since 2014
Source: LM

Foreign trip in 2019? How the rupee rate will impact your travel expenses

Considering the rupee condition, here is a look at how you can plan your holiday in 2019
Source: LM

New NHAI norms may slow down project awards - e paper - english news paper today - news headlines today

New NHAI norms may slow down project awards
City: 

The recently revised standard contract agreement for national highways Centrally-sponsored road works proposed to be implemented on EPC basis could lead to a decline in the pace of new project awards in the short to medium terms, with the pending land acquisition being a primary constraint, warns a report.

“While the pipeline of projects to be awarded remains strong with the Bharatmala Pariyojana gaining ground, the land acquisition issues could delay the awarding,” rating agency Icra said in a weekend report. The target for FY19 is to award 20,000 km projects with majority on the EPC mode.

“Given the land acquisition related issues, and stringent provisions in the revised EPC contract agreement, it is likely that the NHAI will proceed with awarding of contracts only once the land acquisition is in advanced stage,” it said.

New NHAI norms may slow down project awards

Source: EP

Provision coverage ratio of PSBs on rise, crosses 66% - e paper - english news paper today - news headlines today

Provision coverage ratio of PSBs on rise, crosses 66%
City: 

Public sector banks’ provision coverage ratio – which measures the provisioning for bad loans – has gone up from less than 50 per cent in 2015 to 66.85 per cent as of September 2018, reflecting improvement in their financial health, a senior official said.

The provision coverage ratio (PCR) gives an indication of the provision made against bad loans from the profit generated. Higher the PCR, lower is the unexposed part of the bad debts.

“The PCR of public sector banks has risen steeply from 46.04 per cent as of March 2015 to 66.85 per cent as of September 2018, giving banks cushion to absorb losses,” financial services secretary Rajiv Kumar said.

At the same time, various initiatives taken by the government have yielded results, with the bad loans of public sector banks (PSBs) declining by over Rs 23,000 crore from a peak of Rs 9.62 lakh crore in March 2018, he added.

“Gross non-performing assets (NPAs) of PSBs have started declining after peaking in March 2018, registering a decline of Rs 23,860 crore in the first half of the current financial year,” he said.

Pointing out that the consistent rise in PCR also indicates the adoption of discipline for making adequate provisions for NPAs, he said the government backed it up with adequate capital support.

This has been achieved while being compliant with capital requirement norms, he added.

Earlier this month, finance minister Arun Jaitley had said the government will invest an additional Rs 41,000 crore into state-owned lenders over and above what was announced earlier to strengthen their capital base. This would enhance the total recapitalisation in the current financial year from Rs 65,000 crore to Rs 1.06 lakh crore.

On December 20, the government sought Parliament’s approval for infusion of the additional Rs 41,000 crore into the lenders.

Jaitley had said that this would enhance the lending capacity of PSBs and help them exit the Reserve Bank of India's prompt corrective action (PCA) framework that imposes curbs on certain business operations of the banks.

Meanwhile, according to RBI data, banks have seen a significant improvement in recovery of stressed assets helped by the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) and amendments in the Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interests (SARFAESI) Act, during FY18.

In the financial year ended March 2018, banks recovered Rs 40,400 crore worth of bad loans as against Rs 38,500 crore recovered in FY17.

The various channels through which lenders recovered their bad loans include the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC), SARFAESI Act, debt recovery tribunals (DRTs) and Lok Adalats.

While banks recovered Rs 4,900 crore of bad loans through the IBC, the amount recovered through SARFAESI was Rs 26,500 crore in FY18, the RBI said in its annual report on the trends and progress of banking in 2017-18, released to over the weekend.

“Apart from vigorous efforts by banks for speedier recovery, amending the SARFAESI Act to bring in a provision of three months’ imprisonment in case the borrower does not provide asset details and for the lender to get possession of the mortgaged property within 30 days, may have contributed to better recovery,” the report highlighted.

During the year, recovery through Lok Adalats and DRTs declined alongside the number of cases referred, partly indicative of the growing clout of the IBC mechanism for resolution of stressed assets, the monetary authority noted.

The average recovery through IBC is greater than other mechanisms (SARFAESI, DRTs and Lok Adalats) and is also improving gradually, pointing to the need and efficiency of such a channel, the report said.

“Strengthening the infrastructure of the insolvency resolution process, including the proposed increase in the number of benches of the National Company Law Tribunals (NCLTs), should help reduce the overall time currently being taken for resolution under the IBC,” the RBI said.

Besides recovery through various resolution mechanisms, banks are also cleaning up theirs balance sheets through sale of doubtful/loss assets to assets reconstruction companies (ARCs) and other banks/NBFCs/financial institutions by taking haircuts, the report said.

During 2017-18, the acquisition cost of ARCs as a proportion to the book value of assets, has gone up, indicating better realisations by banks on sale of stressed assets.

While private sector banks have been most aggressive on asset sales, state-run lenders lagged, mainly owing to large haircuts and various management issues, the report said.

Provision coverage ratio of PSBs on rise, crosses 66%

Source: EP

Govt seen going full throttle on labour reforms - e paper - english news paper today - news headlines today

Govt seen going full throttle on labour reforms
City: 

The Centre will spare no effort to push through some key labour reforms in the new year and is expected to get Parliament’s nod on at le­ast two codes on wages as well as industrial relations be­fore going to general elections. The labour ministry is alr­­eady in the process of seeki­ng the Union cabinet’s app­r­o­­val on amended wage code bi­ll after its vetting by the pa­r­­liamentary standing comm­i­­ttee, so that it could be pu­s­h­­ed for passage in Parliam­e­nt.

The Code on Wages Bill 2017 was introduced in the Lok Sabha on August 10, 2017 and thereafter referred to the standing committee.

Similarly, the labour ministry is keen to push the passage of Code on Industrial Relations, in the run-up to the 2019 polls.

The ministry, however, has decided to remove cert­a­in provisions in the bill, dr­a­wing flak from trade unions.

In line with the recommendations of the Second National Commission on Labour, the ministry has taken steps for formulating four labour codes on wages; industrial relations; social security and welfare; and occupational safety, health and working conditions by amalgamating, simplifying, and rationalising the relevant provisions of the existing central labour laws.

“Keeping the social secur­ity and welfare aspects of workmen better and intact, we are working in the direct­i­on of bringing reforms in various labour laws with obj­e­ctive of ease of doing busin­e­ss in new future,” labour minister Santosh Gangwar said. The minister also said that the government has taken several new initiatives in the labour and employment sector this year.

The ministry is also working on Code on Social Security & Welfare.

Govt seen going full throttle on labour reforms

Source: EP

Jet Airways in talks with SBI for Rs 1,500 cr loan - e paper - english news paper today - news headlines today

Jet Airways in talks with SBI for Rs 1,500 cr loan
City: 

Loss-making carrier Jet Airways is in discussions with the State Bank of India for raising Rs 1,500 crore short-term loan to meet its working capital requirement and some payment obligations, a source said. Jet Airways strategic partner and Middle-east carrier Etihad, which   h holds 24 per cent stake in the Indian full service carrier, is likely to provide guarantee for the loan, he said.

Significantly, the talks for availing loan are going on at a time when EY is carrying out a forensic audit of the Jet Airways on the orders of the airline’s largest lender for alleged irregularities. “Jet Airways is in discussions with its largest lender to SBI for raising short-term loans worth Rs 1,500 crore. The airline is looking to mop up these funds to meet its working capital requirement as well as for meeting some payment obligations. Jet Airways is expected to provide Etihad Airways’ guarantee for this financing,” an airline source told PTI.

The Naresh Goyal-controlled airline, which has posted three consecutive quarterly losses of over Rs 1,000 crore each since March, already has as much as Rs 8,052 crore of debt on its books as on September 30.

Rating agency Icra has already cut the rating on Jet Airways borrowing programmes. When contacted, SBI spokesperson said, “It is the policy of the bank not to comment upon individual accounts and its treatment”.

While Jet Airways did not respond to PTI queries on this issue, an Etihad Airways in an e-mail response to PTI from Abu Dhabi said, it “does not comment on rumour or speculation”.

“Jet Airways has been seeking these funds as its earlier proposal of raising $350 million Etihad-guaranteed loan from overseas lenders is still at the negotiations table and expected to take time,” the source said who is privy to both the discussions. With its financials in perils and the airline facing cash drought, promoter Goyal is looking to infuse capital in a manner where he does not have to lose control of the Jet Airways, which he set up 25 years ago.

At an emergency board meeting late this month, he asked his team to look for alternate routes of funding while resurrecting the airline.

His airline has already held preliminary level discussions with Tata Group for a possible stake sale a couple of months ago. However, reportedly “unhappy” over the deal, he turned back to his Gulf friend once again to rescue the airline.

In 2013, Etihad had bailed out Jet Airways by acquiring 24 per cent stake in the airline for Rs 2,060 crore, besides extending low-interest loan of $150 million as well as purchasing 50.1 per cent stake in its loyalty programme JetPrivilege.

Jet Airways in talks with SBI for Rs 1,500 cr loan

Source: EP

Sunday, December 30, 2018

UFC 232: Amanda Nunes knocks out Cris Cyborg in 51 seconds, Jon Jones wins on return

UFC 232: Amanda Nunes knocks out Cris Cyborg in 51 seconds, Jon Jones wins on return


Source: TIE

Keira Knightley reflects after sparking Disney film debate with Cinderella comments

Keira Knightley reflects after sparking Disney film debate with Cinderella comments


Source: TIE

First look of Naga Chaitanya and Samantha starrer Majili unveiled

First look of Naga Chaitanya and Samantha starrer Majili unveiled


Source: TIE

Inside Kareena Kapoor, Saif Ali Khan, Taimur’s new year vacation in Switzerland

Inside Kareena Kapoor, Saif Ali Khan, Taimur’s new year vacation in Switzerland


Source: TIE

Legendary filmmaker Mrinal Sen passes away

Legendary filmmaker Mrinal Sen passes away


Source: TIE

PM Narendra Modi’s ‘new look’ goes viral on Instagram

PM Narendra Modi’s ‘new look’ goes viral on Instagram


Source: TIE

India vs Australia 2018: I wouldn’t want to face Jasprit Bumrah on a pitch like Perth, says Virat Kohli

India vs Australia 2018: I wouldn’t want to face Jasprit Bumrah on a pitch like Perth, says Virat Kohli


Source: TIE

Full text of PM Narendra Modi’s 51st Mann Ki Baat

Full text of PM Narendra Modi’s 51st Mann Ki Baat


Source: TIE

FPIs invest Rs 5,400-crore in December on slump in crude prices, strengthening rupee

FPIs invest Rs 5,400-crore in December on slump in crude prices, strengthening rupee


Source: TIE

Nokia 9 PureView with penta-lens camera setup could launch in January 2019: Report

Nokia 9 PureView with penta-lens camera setup could launch in January 2019: Report


Source: TIE

India vs Australia: Remove Virat Kohli, Cheteshwar Pujara and India will struggle too, says Tim Paine

India vs Australia: Remove Virat Kohli, Cheteshwar Pujara and India will struggle too, says Tim Paine


Source: TIE

Moderate drinking beneficial for heart failure patients: Study

Moderate drinking beneficial for heart failure patients: Study


Source: TIE

From Maruti Swift to Tata Harrier & TVS NTorq to Royal Enfield 650 twins

From Maruti Swift to Tata Harrier & TVS NTorq to Royal Enfield 650 twins


Source: TIE

Macaulay Culkin’s Home Alone commercial for Google takes over the internet

Macaulay Culkin’s Home Alone commercial for Google takes over the internet


Source: TIE

Deepak Thakur’s Bigg Boss 12 journey

Deepak Thakur’s Bigg Boss 12 journey


Source: TIE

From applying foundation to mastering smokey eyes: New Year make-up tutorials that you can put to use

From applying foundation to mastering smokey eyes: New Year make-up tutorials that you can put to use


Source: TIE

Govt plans to hire professionals for Air India top positions through global search: Suresh Prabhu

Govt plans to hire professionals for Air India top positions through global search: Suresh Prabhu


Source: TIE

‘Cancer became a metaphor for all that was wrong in my life’: Manisha Koirala on her new book

‘Cancer became a metaphor for all that was wrong in my life’: Manisha Koirala on her new book


Source: TIE

Kerala Pournami Lottery RN-372 Today Results: Winners to be announced shortly

Kerala Pournami Lottery RN-372 Today Results: Winners to be announced shortly


Source: TIE

Rajasthan govt to review textbooks, reference material revised by previous regime

Rajasthan govt to review textbooks, reference material revised by previous regime


Source: TIE

US: Presidential tweets shutdown blame, no talk of solutions

US: Presidential tweets shutdown blame, no talk of solutions


Source: TIE

Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi calls for educational empowerment of weaker sections

Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi calls for educational empowerment of weaker sections


Source: TIE

Goa FDA officer alleges harassment by govt after formalin detection in fish

Goa FDA officer alleges harassment by govt after formalin detection in fish


Source: TIE

Three Indian-origin women scientists awarded by Australian government

Three Indian-origin women scientists awarded by Australian government


Source: TIE

Alert sounded in Jammu after armed men fire at sentry outside military station

Alert sounded in Jammu after armed men fire at sentry outside military station


Source: TIE

In Trump era UN debates relevance of multilateralism

In Trump era UN debates relevance of multilateralism


Source: TIE

Top smartphone brands of 2018: From Xiaomi to Apple, here’s how the biggies fared in India this year

Top smartphone brands of 2018: From Xiaomi to Apple, here’s how the biggies fared in India this year


Source: TIE

Chidambaram mocks ED over ‘Mrs Gandhi’ reference in AgustaWestland probe

Chidambaram mocks ED over ‘Mrs Gandhi’ reference in AgustaWestland probe


Source: TIE

Ghazipur violence: 11 arrested, several detained

Ghazipur violence: 11 arrested, several detained
A police constable was killed and several others injured in stone pelting during a protest by members of the Nishad Party

Source: TH

Army, armed men exchange fire in Jammu

Army, armed men exchange fire in Jammu
An alert was sounded in Jammu after the Army and unidentified armed men exchanged fire on Sunday morning at the Army's Ratnuchak Military Station.A J

Source: TH

After Bogibeel, railway focus on double track in Assam

After Bogibeel, railway focus on double track in Assam
After the inauguration of the Bogibeel Bridge, India’s longest rail and road span, the Railway Ministry has focussed on doubling the arterial railway

Source: TH

Kadiri Urban CI quits, to join politics

Kadiri Urban CI quits, to join politics
Resignation letter submitted to Deputy Superintendent of Police

Source: TH

Task force opens fire atwoodcutters, seizes logs

Task force opens fire atwoodcutters, seizes logs
Additional forces will be deployed to stop infiltration, says official

Source: TH

Child kidnap: sketch of suspect released

Child kidnap: sketch of suspect released
Special teams formed, says SP

Source: TH

HIV positive blood donor dies after consuming poison

HIV positive blood donor dies after consuming poison
The 19-year-old’s blood was earlier transfused to a pregnant woman from Virudhunagar district

Source: TH

Centre gave ₹1.22 lakh crore for Capital, Polavaram etc.: Kanna

Centre gave ₹1.22 lakh crore for Capital, Polavaram etc.: Kanna
‘Telugu Desam’s White Papers are a farce’

Source: TH

Praying at the altar of populism

Praying at the altar of populism
And its impact on foreign policy decisions

Source: TH

Legal empowerment camp held

Legal empowerment camp held
State Legal Services Authority member-secretary A. Santhose Reddy has said that in a democracy, every citizen is supposed to have equal justice and if

Source: TH

Tamil Nadu's noon meal scheme in peril?

Tamil Nadu's noon meal scheme in peril?
The recent move to rationalise staff at over 8,900 noon meal centres across Tamil Nadu has set the cat among the pigeons. Any move to dilute the scheme will impact the quality and, in turn, the children, activists argue

Source: TH

‘Apollo failed to do angiogram’

‘Apollo failed to do angiogram’
Probe panel blames Sasikala and hospital for Jaya’s deteriorating health

Source: TH

Neyveli township drives change

Neyveli township drives change
Encouraging results on waste segregation spur NLCIL to step up a pilot project

Source: TH

A year that saw Tamil Nadu's health sector stained by transfusion blot

A year that saw Tamil Nadu's health sector stained by transfusion blot
The State did well on the SDG index, secured nod for an AIIMS in Madurai

Source: TH

Peru’s application on GI tag for Pisco accepted

Peru’s application on GI tag for Pisco accepted
Judgment comes in the wake of objection from Chilean body

Source: TH

‘WHO guidelines on TB must be followed’

‘WHO guidelines on TB must be followed’
Response to Multi-Drug-Resistant regimen slow in India, says WHO Deputy Director-General for Programmes Soumya Swaminathan

Source: TH

The doll house: Making of Thanjavur dolls

The doll house: Making of Thanjavur dolls
A young educated man is among the few who keep alive the traditional craft of making Thanjavur dolls

Source: TH

Karnataka Assembly Secretary S. Murthy suspended

Karnataka Assembly Secretary S. Murthy suspended
S. Murthy, Secretary of the Legislative Assembly, has been kept under suspension on the charge of siphoning off funds sanctioned for conducting the w

Source: TH

Excursion turns tragic as student dies in accident in Kodagu

Excursion turns tragic as student dies in accident in Kodagu
A private bus taking schoolchildren on an excursion from Ballari to Madikeri crashed into a roadside ditch at Suntikoppa in Kodagu district early on S

Source: TH

Have suggested that Prajwal contest from Hassan, says Deve Gowda

Have suggested that Prajwal contest from Hassan, says Deve Gowda
Hinting at his grandson Prajwal Revanna’s entry into electoral politics, Janata Dal (Secular) patriarch H.D. Deve Gowda on Saturday revealed that he

Source: TH

Madhukar Shetty lives on in the hearts of people in Chikkamagaluru

Madhukar Shetty lives on in the hearts of people in Chikkamagaluru
IPS officer K. Madhukar Shetty served as Superintendent of Police of Chikkamagaluru for only eight months and four days, but the people of the distri

Source: TH

Gauri Lankesh murder case: SIT trying to recover weapon bits thrown into Vasai Creek

Gauri Lankesh murder case: SIT trying to recover weapon bits thrown into Vasai Creek
Key accused in Gauri murder allegedly dismantled pistols

Source: TH

Last rites of Madhukar Shetty in Udupi on Sunday

Last rites of Madhukar Shetty in Udupi on Sunday
It was not just policemen who were there; a large number of common people also came to pay their last respects to IPS officer K. Madhukar Shetty on S

Source: TH

Schools go marketing to apartment complexes

Schools go marketing to apartment complexes
Competition is driving institutions to reach out to parents by holding open house, competitions

Source: TH

‘Focus on better delivery of welfare schemes’

‘Focus on better delivery of welfare schemes’
Use White Papers being released to draw development roadmap, CM tells Collectors

Source: TH

Highways turn death-trap

Highways turn death-trap
45% of road accident-deaths in Telangana were on national, State highways

Source: TH

Dog-bite victim’s family yet to get compensation even after court order

Dog-bite victim’s family yet to get compensation even after court order
Despite an order by a local court holding the municipal corporation responsible for the death of a teenager due to dog bite, the municipal authorities

Source: TH

A month’s time should have been given to shift HC: Naidu

A month’s time should have been given to shift HC: Naidu
At least a month’s time should have been given to shift the High Court to Amaravati, Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu said on Saturday.“We are prep

Source: TH

Seven poachers held in Assam

Seven poachers held in Assam
Admit to killing tiger in Kaziranga; animal skin, bones recovered from their possession

Source: TH

‘Nationalisation of primary education is the only way to save languages’

‘Nationalisation of primary education is the only way to save languages’
‘It is the only way to save Indian languages; our mother tongue makes our life meaningful’

Source: TH

It’s not what I represent: Former Aussie cricketer O’Keeffe responds to criticism of his commentary

Watch: Economist Jayati Ghosh talks about the normalisation of violence since the Babri demolition

United Kingdom: Musician Nitin Sawhney among several British-Asians named in honours list

Australian Open: Andy Murray, Rafael Nadal look for resurgence after injury-plagued 2018

The Weekend Fix: 10 pieces that will help you understand 2018 – and look ahead to the new year

Australia add all-rounder Marnus Labuschagne to Sydney Test squad

India is world No 1 with good reason: Twitter reacts to Virat Kohli and Co’s famous win in Melbourne

Venus Williams, Victoria Azarenka to clash in first round of ASB Classic

Kashmir 2018: This was the year battle lines hardened and representative government collapsed

Eco India: An innovation incubator lab at IIT-Delhi may have found an alternative to stubble burning

Ghazipur violence: ‘No one safe in Adityanath’s jungle rule,’ says Congress after policeman’s death

The big news: Constable killed in mob violence in Uttar Pradesh’s Ghazipur, and 9 other top stories

‘Selection Day’: Netflix series is a watchable but underachieving sports drama

From the Aryan migration to caste, two books offer fascinating insights into India’s ancient past

Bangladesh elections: Political activist reported dead as voting takes place amid tight security

Bollywood in 2018: The year’s best songs (and Arijit Singh is still the undisputed king)

#39;Big progress#39; with China on trade, says Donald Trump

#39;Big progress#39; with China on trade, says Donald Trump
#39;Big progress#39; with China on trade, says Donald Trump After the two countries agreed to resolve their trade disputes in 90 days, American and Chinese officials held several round of telephonic calls over the last few weeks.

Source: MC

Ahead of Lok Sabha polls, Nitish Kumar holds JD(U) meeting in Patna

Ahead of Lok Sabha polls, Nitish Kumar holds JD(U) meeting in Patna
Ahead of Lok Sabha polls, Nitish Kumar holds JD(U) meeting in Patna Last week, BJP president Amit Shah had announced the seat-sharing formula of the NDA in Bihar, wherein his party and the JD(U) will contest 17 seats each while the LJP will fight the remaining six.

Source: MC

BJP national council meet to be held at Delhi#39;s Ramlila Maidan on January 11-12

BJP national council meet to be held at Delhi#39;s Ramlila Maidan on January 11-12
BJP national council meet to be held at Delhi#39;s Ramlila Maidan on January 11-12 Besides Modi and Shah, several Union ministers and senior office-bearers of the saffron party are likely to participate in the national council meet.

Source: MC

CAIT slams USISPF for terming new e-commerce rules as #39;regressive#39;

CAIT slams USISPF for terming new e-commerce rules as #39;regressive#39;
CAIT slams USISPF for terming new e-commerce rules as #39;regressive#39; CAIT cautioned that any changes made "under the undue pressure of these lobbies will be strongly and stoutly opposed by the traders of India"

Source: MC

UP cop killed in stone-pelting after PM Modi#39;s rally

UP cop killed in stone-pelting after PM Modi#39;s rally
UP cop killed in stone-pelting after PM Modi#39;s rally Constable Suresh Vats (48) was hit on the head by a stone when he went to end the traffic jam.

Source: MC

Madhya Pradesh to get #39;spiritual department#39;

Madhya Pradesh to get #39;spiritual department#39;
Madhya Pradesh to get #39;spiritual department#39; The Congress had promised to form such a department before the last month#39;s Assembly elections.

Source: MC

New Rajasthan cabinet scraps education criteria for civic poll candidates

New Rajasthan cabinet scraps education criteria for civic poll candidates
New Rajasthan cabinet scraps education criteria for civic poll candidates The state government will review the decisions taken by the previous BJP-led dispensation in the last six months.

Source: MC

Government to infuse Rs 10,086 crore in Bank of India

Government to infuse Rs 10,086 crore in Bank of India
Government to infuse Rs 10,086 crore in Bank of India The fund infusion would be by way of preferential allotment of shares.

Source: MC

India among first five nations to submit Sixth National Report: Environment Ministry

India among first five nations to submit Sixth National Report: Environment Ministry
India among first five nations to submit Sixth National Report: Environment Ministry The submission of national reports is a mandatory obligation on parties to international treaties, including the CBD.

Source: MC

BJP misusing money: Ahmed Patel on #39;The Accidental Prime Minister#39;

BJP misusing money: Ahmed Patel on #39;The Accidental Prime Minister#39;
BJP misusing money: Ahmed Patel on #39;The Accidental Prime Minister#39; Directed by Vijay Ratnakar Gutte, the film stars Anupam Kher as Singh and Akshaye Khanna as Baru and is scheduled to release in theatres on January 11.

Source: MC

No way trapped Meghalaya miners will come out alive, says survivor

No way trapped Meghalaya miners will come out alive, says survivor
No way trapped Meghalaya miners will come out alive, says survivor Sahib Ali, hailing from Assam#39;s Chirang district, is one of the five men who narrowly escaped the flooding coal mine a fortnight ago.

Source: MC

PM Modi launches comprehensive pension management software SAMPANN

PM Modi launches comprehensive pension management software SAMPANN
PM Modi launches comprehensive pension management software SAMPANN The prime minister said the Union government is using technology to improve ease of living and greater ease of access to citizen-centric services.

Source: MC

Pakistan sends recommendations to India for visa-free travel of Sikh pilgrims through Kartarpur corridor

Pakistan sends recommendations to India for visa-free travel of Sikh pilgrims through Kartarpur corridor
Pakistan sends recommendations to India for visa-free travel of Sikh pilgrims through Kartarpur corridor The recommendations call for Indian pilgrims to be given free entry and that facilitation centres and security check-posts to be set up on both sides of the border.

Source: MC

Over 13,000 panchayats to go for polls in Punjab on December 30

Over 13,000 panchayats to go for polls in Punjab on December 30
Over 13,000 panchayats to go for polls in Punjab on December 30 Around 8,000 candidates are in fray for the post of sarpanchs and panchs.

Source: MC