Plan and Policy

Plan & Policy

As India Inc struggles to lower debt, economy suffers

India’s cash crunch and confusion over the introduction of a national sales tax were initially blamed for pulling economic growth down to its weakest pace in more than three years. But that is masking a more debilitating factor affecting the economy – corporate debt.

Thomson Reuters data, based on the latest annual ea­rnings reports, shows In­dia’s corporate debt rose to a seven-year high at the end of March. More than a fifth of large companies did not earn enough to pay interest on their loans and the pace of new loans fell to the lowest in more than six decades.

Paytm Payments Bank in talks to partner full-service banks

Paytm Payments Bank is in talks to partner with full-service banks to offer services such as loans and term deposits, which it cannot do on its own due to regulatory restrictions, its chief executive told Reuters.

Payments banks are niche banks that were allowed by the Reserve Bank of India in a bid to expand access to financial services in Asia’s third-largest economy where millions don’t have a bank account.

The payments banks can take savings deposits and remittances but are not permitted to lend.

DeMo digs out no black money; 99% of banned notes return

In a major embarrassment to the Modi government that demonetised high value currency notes in November last year to curb black money, 99 per cent of the banned currencies have returned to the system, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) said on Tuesday. Of the Rs 15.44 lakh crore withdrawn with the scrapping of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes, Rs 15.28 lakh crore has come back to the central bank since November 9, 2016.

Gold to touch Rs 31,500 level before end of calendar year

Escalation of North Korean tensions was just a trigger. Factors that can further the gold rally towards $1,400 in the international market and Rs 31,500 in the Indian market before the end of the calendar year are there in place.

Gold has gained around $40 per ounce in the past few days and Rs 1,000 per 10 gm in three sessions and most importantly crossed the psychological level of $1,300.

Battle for India’s $45b gold industry has begun

India’s past and future are colliding in Anand Ghugre’s family jewellery shop in Mumbai.

“We still operate the way my father did for 50 years,” said Ghugre, 52, explaining that transactions were typically in cash and were not always recorded. “For small jewellers and the unorganised sector, most of our sales happen through personal connections. Sometimes they don’t want bills, but the jewellers can’t say no to them.”

RBI readies 2nd list of bankruptcy candidates, mostly infra companies

After identifying 12 big defaulters for insolvency proceedings in June, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) is believed to have drawn a second list of about 30-40 companies for resolution of bad loans through Insolvency & Bankruptcy Code (IBC). Videocon, Castex Technologies, Visa Steel, JSPL and IVRCL are said to be part of the newly prepared list. This, however, could not be independently confirmed with the companies.

PNB plans to sell Delhi HQ to raise funds

India’s second largest state-run lender Punjab National Bank (PNB) is planning to sell its headquarters in New Delhi and other real-estate assets in Chennai and Kolkata in a bid to raise funds, a top bank official said on Tuesday. PNB’s head office is currently situated at Bhikaji Cama Place. As per the official, a new office is being constructed at Dwarka in the national capital, which is likely to be completed soon.

Startups can raise 100% funds from foreign investors

The government has for the first time allowed startups to raise 100 per cent of their funds from foreign venture capital investors (FVCI) but with some riders.

Startups can issue equity or equity-linked instruments or debt instruments to FVCI against receipt of foreign remittance, according to the consolidated foreign direct investment (FDI) policy for 2017, released by the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) on Monday. “In addition, startups can issue convertible notes to person resident outside India (subject to certain conditions),” it said.

PSBs with merger plans to get more funds

The government plans to redo capitalisation exercise for those public sector banks (PSBs) that come up with a merger plan.

Sources said some PSBs may be given more capital than budgeted for by the finance ministry if it is found that post-merger their capitalisation need increases for the short-term with the addition of non-performing assets (NPAs) in their books.