Banking Sector

RBI directs payment firms to display company name in products

RBIMumbai: Reserve Bank has directed entities offering services such as e-wallets, smart cards and White Label ATMs to prominently display their company name in products to ensure transparency.

"All the information available to the public regarding the product, whether as advertisements, on website, application form, etc. Should prominently carry the name of the entity/company authorised by RBI," Reserve Bank said in a notification.

RBI said it came to its notice that many authorised entities using specific brand names for their products like e-wallets, smart cards, WLAs were not disclosing their own company name in the information available to the users.

Need to rethink strategy for PSU banks: Banking Secretary

Pune - There is a need to rethink strategies for public sector banks in the country and the efforts for their consolidation would not be limited to merger and acquisitions, a senior finance ministry official said on Friday.

Financial Services Secretary Hasmukh Adhia also said that it was absolutely essential to implement banking reforms and making the banks stronger was necessary for the economic growth.

Speaking to reporters at a pre-event briefing on two-day financial sector retreat 'Gyan Sangam' here, Adhia also said that asset quality was a problem for many PSU banks, while low credit offtake was also an area of concern.

RBI pitches for structural reforms; sees 6% inflation in 2015

RBIMumbai: Pitching for structural reforms to reinforce investor confidence, RBI on Monday said falling inflation and political stability have helped check the macroeconomic vulnerabilities, while retail inflation is expected to stabilise near 6 percent level in 2015.

The central bank, however, flagged lower revenue mobilisation this fiscal as a "major concern" and said that the asset quality remains a grey area in the banking sector.

It also sounded caution over the recent phenomenon of FIIs showing greater interest in the Indian debt markets, saying this trend can turn volatile in the wake of changes in global markets, especially in the US, the world's largest economy.

RBI may cut policy rates by 0.25% in February: Bank of America

New Delhi - The Reserve Bank is likely to cut rates by 0.25 percent in February's monetary policy review as its target of six percent inflation by January 2016 is likely to be met, Bank of America Merrill Lynch has said.

"In our view, inflation is well set to achieve RBI's eight percent January 2015 and six percent January 2016 CPI inflation targets. We continue to expect Governor Raghuram Rajan to cut rates by 25 basis points on February 3," the investment banking major said in a note.

RBI extends deadline to exchange pre-2005 notes till June 30

RBI extends deadline to exchange pre-2005 notes till June 30Mumbai : The deadline for exchanging pre-2005 currency notes of various denominations, including Rs 500 and Rs 1,000, has been extended by another six months till June, 30, 2015.

"The Reserve Bank of India has stated that the public can do so till June 30, 2015. Earlier in March 2014, it had set the last date for public to exchange these notes was January 1, 2015," the RBI said in a statement.

The central bank clarified that all such notes will continue to remain a legal tender. These notes can be exchanged for their full value, it added.

'Make in India' should not merely focus on manufacturing: Rajan

Raghuram RajanNew Delhi: Sounding a note of caution against Prime Minister Narendra Modi's 'Make in India' campaign, RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan on Friday said it should not focus only on manufacturing.

"I am... Cautioning against picking a particular sector such as manufacturing for encouragement, simply because it has worked well for China. India is different, and developing at a different time, and we should be agnostic about what will work," Rajan said while speaking at the Bharat Ram Memorial Lecture in Ficci.

'RBI to ease rates by 50 bps in 2015, first cut likely in Feb'

New Delhi - The RBI is expected to lower policy rates by 50 basis points in 2015 with the first rate cut likely as early as February next year on the back of slowing inflation, global brokerage firm Morgan Stanley said.

The report said the magnitude of rate cuts would depend on the trajectory of inflation, which is expected to reach 6 percent level on a sustained basis by March 2015.

"In our base case, we expect inflation to reach the 6 per cent level on a sustained basis by March 2015 (same as the RBI's expectation). We therefore assume 50 basis points policy rate cuts in 2015 in our base case," Morgan Stanley said in a research note.

PSU bank employees go on strike in North

Lucknow, Dec. 3 - The Public Sector Bank employees in northern region are observing a day-long strike to press for wage revision and other demands.

Normal banking operations are likely to be affected due to the strike in the states of Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Punjab and Delhi.

Meanwhile, a press release issued by the Finance Ministry reportedly said that the government is fully seized of the situation arising out of the notice given by the United Forum Of Bank Unions (UFBU) for Zone-wise relay strikes from 2nd to 5th December.

The government has also asked the banks to take pre-emptive steps to ensure least inconvenience to general public and to adequately load ATMs.

'Only 48% of Indian adults have access to bank account'

New Delhi - Only 48 percent of Indian adults have bank accounts and nearly half of them lie dormant, says a report.

According to a nation-wide survey on financial behaviour, India has the highest account dormancy rate even more than countries like Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Nigeria, India, Pakistan and Bangladesh.

The survey compiled by the Financial Inclusion Insights programme, operated by global strategic research consultancy InterMedia and supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, noted the majority of Indians borrow money from family and friends and not from financial institutions.

RBI maintains status quo; indicates rate cut in early 2015

Mumbai - Disappointing industry and the government, RBI Tuesday chose not to go for a rate cut for fifth time in a row but held out a promise of a softening stand in the next review due in February.

While keeping the short term lending (repo) rate unchanged at 8 percent, RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan said that "a change in the monetary policy stance at the current juncture is premature".

"However, if the current inflation momentum and changes in inflationary expectations continue, and fiscal developments are encouraging, a change in the monetary policy stance is likely early next year, including outside the policy review cycle," he said.

Interest rates to remain unchanged, says RBI

RBIMumbai, Dec 2 : The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on Tuesday decided to keep interest rates unchanged and to stay focussed on containing inflation.

The RBI kept the repo rate at 8 per cent at its policy review, and there was no reduction.

The reason for the interest rates being unchanged was because of the less than positive economic growth that was expected during Prime Minister Narendra Modi's first six months in power.

RBI Governor Dr. Raghuram Rajan has reportedly kept the rates same, as a slowdown in economic growth was not as bad as earlier feared.

No drastic job cuts post KMB-ING Vysya merger: Uday Kotak

Mumbai - Kotak Mahindra Bank chief Uday Kotak has assured that there will not be "any dramatic" reduction immediately in the number of employees following the merger of ING Vysya Bank.

While ING has around 10,000 employees, Kotak Bank has around 29,000.

"We believe total number of employees will grow over time, but we don't see any dramatic reduction in the net number of people in a hurry," the Executive Vice-Chairman and Managing Director of Kotak Bank Uday Kotak told PTI after he announced the merger deal last evening.

RBI tightens norms for NBFCs; revokes registration suspension

RBI tightens norms for NBFCs; revokes registration suspensionMumbai: Tightening norms for non-banking financial companies (NBFCs), RBI Monday raised capital adequacy requirement and net owned fund limit, among others, with an objective to mitigate risks in the sector.

With a view to streamline the regulations for the sector, RBI also revoked temporary suspension on issuance of Certificate of Registration (CoR) to companies that want to conduct business of non-banking financial institution (NBFI).

As per the latest directives, RBI has raised the limit for NBFCs to maintain the Net Owned Fund (NOF) requirement to four times by 2017 to Rs 2 crore.

JP Morgan in midst of US currency trading probe

jp morganLondon, Nov 04 : US banking giant JP Morgan is facing probe over currency trading.

According to the BBC, the firm said the US Department of Justice (DoJ) had launched a criminal investigation, while other regulators are running civil investigations.

The bank also estimated a possible loss of up to 5.9 billion dollars in wake of the legal proceedings.

JP Morgan stated in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Monday that it was lending full co-operation to the authorities and was involved in discussions that intended to resolve their respective investigations.

Government scraps selection of 6 banks' CMDs

Bank of BarodaNew Delhi: Government on Monday scrapped the selection of six PSU bank heads during UPA tenure following a high-level panel finding irregularities in the process followed.

The probe into the selections to banks like Bank of Baroda and Canara Bank followed arrest and termination of Syndicate Bank CMD S K Jain for alleged graft.

A Finance Ministry statement said future vacancies of chairman and managing directors (CMDs) as well as executive directors of PSU banks will now be filled through a new selection process.

Japan's SoftBank to invest USD 10 billion in India

New Delhi, Oct. 28 - The Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Japanese telecommunications and internet firm SoftBank Corporation, Masayoshi Son, has pledged an investment of USD 10 billion in India's IT and communications sector in the coming years.

The proposed investment was committed in a meeting with the Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad.

Masayoshi Son, accompanied by a delegation of his company directors, had also met Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday, to discuss various investment plans in India.

Bloomberg Billionaires Index has named Son as the richest man in Japan, with an estimated wealth to be worth USD 16.6 billion. (ANI)

HDFC Bank posts 20% rise in Q2 net profit to Rs 2,381.5 crore

New Delhi - HDFC Bank on Tuesday reported a 20 percent rise in its September quarter net profit to Rs 2,381.5 crore.

The bank had earned Rs 1982.32 crore net profit in July-September quarter of the last fiscal, HDFC said in a filing to the stock exchanges.

Bank's total income was at Rs 13,894.7 crore in Q2, up from Rs 11,937.7 crore in the same period last year.

HDFC said September-quarter provisions was up at Rs 455.9 crore as against Rs 385.9 crore in the corresponding period of previous fiscal.


SBI to carry on in UK despite crackdown on foreign banks

SBILondon : State Bank of India is determined to carry on retail banking operations in the UK despite a recent crackdown by the Bank of England on the operations of foreign-owned banks in the country.

SBI, which has been operating in the UK for 95 years, said it is prepared to set aside 100 million pounds in ring-fenced capital and restructure its operations if that is necessary to keep operating on the high streets.

Mrutyunjay Mahapatra, the UK head of the bank, told 'The Times' newspaper that the bank will keep serving retail customers in Britain as well as open new branches.

Indian economy to grow by 6.4% in 2015-16: World Bank

World BankWashington: Indian economy, which accounts for 80 percent of South Asia's output, is set to grow by 6.4 percent in 2015-16 as against 5.6 percent in 2014-15, the World Bank has said.

With economic activity buoyed by expectations from the new elected government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, "India is benefiting from a "Modi dividend"," the Bank said in its twice-a-year South Asia Economic Focus report.

Over the next year or so economic growth should be supported by the recovering US economy that would provide a market for Indian merchandise and service exports, it said.

Raghuram Rajan likely to hold onto key rates today

Raghuram-RajanMumbai - Reserve Bank Governor Raghuram Rajan is widely expected to hold the key rates citing high inflation at the fourth bi-monthly monetary policy announcement on Tuesday, even though the pro-growth lobby has been wishing for a rate cut.

This is despite some downward movement in consumer price inflation of late, which eased to 7.8 percent for August. But it is the medium-term targets that worry the central bank, say RBI watchers.

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