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The international exchange from BSE, IndiaINX, received an approval from the regulator, Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), to commence trading in Gold Options contracts – the first for India at GIFT IFSC
The underlying asset for the options will be IndiaINX Gold Futures, while the instrument type will be OPTCOM.
Current Contract value with Strike price+ Premium will be $ 32, and Contract Size will be One India Inx Gold Futures contract.
Minimum tick size is $ 0.1. The options types will be premium style European Call & Put Options, while contract months will be January, March, July, September and November.
This instrument will give the buyer a right to buy or sell an underlier at a preset price on a future date. Considering the other gold contracts on BSE’s India INX, we are clocking daily average turnover of $ 35 Million.
BitBay, one of the top ten cryptocurrency trading platforms in the world, has launched a dedicated platform for trade and exchange of digital currencies such as bitcoin, litecoin, ether, Lisk, monero, dash and gamecredits.
The company will also work towards creating awareness about digital currencies and also removing misconceptions related to these currencies in a market like India.
BitBay claims to be the only exchange in India that provides trade and exchange of multiple cryptocurrencies, high level security standards, including a “cold wallets” policy and two-factor authentication solutions.
It will be offering six digital currencies to keep and trade with local currency and will carry out demo trading from August 10 till August 24.
IOC buys more US crude oil ; it became the first Indian refinery to purchase 950,000 barrels of light sweet Eagle Ford shale oil and 950,000 barrels of heavy sour Mars crude
Indian state-refiner IOCBSE 0.41 % bought 1.9 million barrels of US crude in its second import tender seeking oil from the Americas, making it the first Indian refiner to purchase Eagle Ford shale oil
IOC bought 950,000 barrels of light sweet Eagle Ford shale oil and 950,000 barrels of heavy sour Mars crude for end-October delivery from trading firm Trafigura.
The latest purchase comes after a previous import tender where IOC bought 1.6 million barrels of Mars crude and 400,000 barrels of Western Canadian Select.
Indian refiners have turned their sights to crude from the Americas as they are keen to diversify their crude import sources as arbitrage opens due to global oil supply cuts.
State-run Canara Bank unveiled two new digital services for online payments; 1. Bharat Bill Payment System (BBPS), 2. Bharat QR (Quick Response).
Bharat QR (Quick Response) is for payment settlement at merchant locations and Bharat Bill Payment System (BBPS) is an integrated bill payment system for net banking customers.
The first service is a mobile application, which enables a merchant to accept payments as settlement for sale of goods or services.
Merchants enrolled by our bank will be allotted a QR code in line with the Bharat QR code standards. As the solution is interoperable, customers of any bank can make the payment using the mobile banking facility of their bank.
The second product (BBPS), an initiative of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and managed by the National Payments Corp of India (NPCI), offers bill payment services to the bank’s net banking customers with network of agents.
The Multi Commodity Exchange Ltd (MCX) has received markets regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India’s (SEBI) approval to launch country’s first gold options contract soon.
In June this year, SEBI allowed options trading in commodities to deepen the market but permitted each exchange to launch options on futures of only one commodity initially.
Putting in place strict eligibility criteria, SEBI said options could be launched on futures contract of only those commodities that are among the top five in terms of total trading turnover value of previous 12 months.
Exchanges have been demanding for long that options trading in commodities be allowed. While SEBI had agreed to permit options trading last year itself, some legal requirements were holding back the move.
Lok Sabha passed the bill approving merger of associate banks with SBI under the amendment in State Bank of India Act, 1955.
The government said the merger of the five associate banks with the SBI will lead to increased capital base and availability of loan, as the Lok Sabha passed the bill approving the amalgamation.
The Lok Sabha passed the bill to repeal the SBI (Subsidiary Banks) Act 1959, State Bank of Hyderabad Act 1956 and to further amend the State Bank of India Act, 1955, following the merger of five associates with the parent SBI.
SBI has come in the list of top 50 banks globally and is ranked at the 45th position.
The merger will bring about increased capital base and increased ability to give loans. Also, small banks will get access to products like mutual funds.
ICICI Bank announced the launch of Instant Credit Card Service, which will enable its savings account customers to get a credit card instantly, in a completely digital and paperless manner.
This is the first-of-its-kind offering in the Indian banking industry, the private sector lender said in a press release.
Using the Instant Credit Card Service, pre-qualified customers can apply and get credit card number and other important details online, using which, he/she can immediately start shopping online, without having to wait for the physical card to arrive.
To apply for an instant credit card, customers can log in through their internet banking account, where they will be shown an option of availing a credit card with their individual credit limits. They can choose from a range of cards.
For promoting an e – payments solution, private lender IDFC Bank has partnered with digital payments brand Zeta.
The venture was initiated to launch ‘IDFC Bank Benefits’-a payment solution for the corporates that digitally record their employee spends and claims, making the documentation convenient and paperless.
The digital solution comprises an IDFC Bank Benefits Card and Zeta app which puts together allowances and reimbursements ensured by an employer into one preloaded card.
As per the offering, the employees will be provided with an option to access the Benefits Card via the Zeta app on their mobile or via the web. This enables the employee to keep a track on spends, entitlement limits and submit claims, digitally, while on-the-move.
Mastercard and PayPal have extended their partnership into Asia Pacific to enhance the consumer experience and make Mastercard a clear payment option with PayPal
The deal will expand PayPal’s presence at the point of sale and enable Masterpass for Braintree merchants in the region.
Additionally, both companies will collaborate to create opportunities to leverage Mastercard’s new payment flow technologies, providing increased value to Mastercard cardholders, financial institutions, and PayPal customers.
PayPal will also have the opportunity to give consumers and small businesses across Asia Pacific the ability to cash out funds held in their PayPal accounts to a Mastercard debit card.
India signed a loan agreement with Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) for financing USD 329 million dollars.
The agreement was signed by Joint Secretary (MI) in the Ministry of Finance, Sameer Kumar Khare, on behalf of India and Vice President and Chief Investment Officer, AIIB, D J Pandian on behalf of the AIIB.
The objective of the project is to improve the rural road connectivity and accessibility (by providing all weather road connectivity) to 1,060 villages in all the 33 districts in Gujarat state benefiting about 8 million people.
The project will also benefit the service providers such as public transport operators, educational institutions, hospitals, local markets and traders.
The National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) has approved the proposed merger between Bharti Airtel and Telenor India
The tribunal has instructed the companies to hold a meeting of equity shareholders and unsecured creditors.
The Sunil Bharti Mittal-led company had announced in February that it would acquire the business of Telenor India for an undisclosed sum.
Airtel would take over its spectrum in all seven circles — Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Maharashtra, Gujarat, UP (East), UP (West) and Assam. It would also acquire its licences and operations, including its employees and customer base of 44 million.
After Grofers and Amazon India, online grocery firm BigBasket received the government’s nod for foreign direct investment, to products which are manufactured or produced in India
The start-up, which applied for FDI in September last year, will have to spin off a new entity to start this business since 100% FDI is only applicable for food products manufactured or produced in India, whereas currently BigBasket sells other household products such as soap, shampoos etc through its e-commerce channel.
Last year, three online commerce firms — Grofers, Amazon and Bigbasket — had applied seeking approval for FDI in food retail with an overall investment of $695 million over a period of time with the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP).
Regulator SEBI set up a committee on ‘fair market conduct’ which will suggest measures for improving surveillance of the Markets.
The panel, under the chairmanship of former law secretary T K Viswanathan, would suggest measures for improvement in PIT (Prohibition of Insider Trading) norms, PFTUP (Prohibition of Fraudulent and Unfair Trade Practices) regulations and mainly related to ‘trading plans’ and handling of ”unpublished price sensitive information’ during takeovers.
It would be responsible for recommending steps to align insider trading regulations with Companies Act provisions.
The committee will suggest short term and medium term measures for improved surveillance of the markets as well as issues of high-frequency trades, harnessing of technology and analytics in surveillance
The State Bank of India (SBI) and Samsung India announced the availability of Samsung Pay for higher variants of SBI debit card, to boost ‘Digital India’ initiative.
Samsung Pay works on 2.5 million Point of Sale (PoS) Card machines across the country through its Magnetic Secure Transmission (MST) technology.
Samsung Pay is currently available on a wide range of Samsung smartphones, enabling consumers to make offline payments without the need for a physical Card.
“To help more consumers avail of our innovative payment system, we have also introduced Samsung Pay to our mid-segment smartphones like the Galaxy J7 Pro. We recently introduced Samsung Pay Mini to cater to the unique requirements of mid-segment consumers too.
RBI widens Basel-III-compliant asset base of banks, helping banks to shore up their capital buffers and improve liquidity coverage ratios.
Ahead of the implementation of the stringent capital requirements under the Basel-III regime from 2019, the Reserve Bank today amended a slew of previous regulations on the same, helping banks to shore up their capital buffers and improve liquidity coverage ratios.
Accordingly, the new amendments widen the assets of banks such as the excess CRR; excess G-secs holdings in SLR; and also excess g-secs under marginal standing facility, which all would now be included in the stock of liquid assets without any limit as also without applying any haircut, the central bank said in a notification.
The liquid stock will also include marketable securities issued/guaranteed by foreign sovereigns which have only 0 per cent risk weight under the Basel II standardised approach for credit risk.
RBI cuts Repo rate by 25 bps to 6% & Reverse Repo Rate by 25 basis points to 5.75 %. Loans may get cheaper.
Repo rate – the rate at the which the central bank lends short-term money to banks – was cut by 25 basis points to 6 per cent from 6.25 per cent.
RBI’s move comes on the back of inflation running well below its target for consecutive quarters. The central bank had last cut key rates in October 2016.
The current rate of 6 per cent is the lowest since November 2010.
The RBI also cut reverse repo rate — the rate at which the central bank borrows money from commercial banks by 25 basis points to 5.75 per cent from 6 per cent.
Marginal Standing Facility (MSF) rate — the rate at which banks borrow overnight funds from RBI against approved government securities — and the bank rate were also adjusted to 6.25 per cent.
The State Bank of India, the country’s largest lender, has slashed interest on savings account deposits by 50 basis points to 3.5 per cent on balance up to Rs 1 crore.
However, the bank will continue to offer 4 per cent interest on savings account balance of Rs 1 crore and above.
The bank is introducing two-tier saving bank interest rate with effect from July 31. While balance above Rs 1 crore will continue to earn interest at 4 per cent per annum, interest at 3.5 per cent will be offered on balance of Rs 1 crore and below,
The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) entered into nine Unilateral Advance Pricing Agreements (UAPAs) with Indian taxpayers in the month of July, 2017.
The APA Scheme endeavours to provide certainty to taxpayers in the domain of transfer pricing by specifying the methods of pricing and determining the Arm’s Length Price of international transactions in advance for a maximum period of five future years.
Further, the taxpayer has the option to rollback the APA for four preceding years, as a result of which, a total of nine years of tax certainty is provided. Since its inception, the APA scheme has attracted tremendous interest among Multi National Enterprises (MNEs).
The nine APAs signed in the month of July, 2017 pertain to diverse sectors of the economy. CBDT has signed its first APA with a taxpayer engaged in supplying rigs used in Oil & Gas exploration. Other than the Oil & Gas Sector, the APAs pertain to Education, Banking, Pharmaceutical, Manufacturing and Information Technology sectors of the economy.
RBI sets up Supervisory Colleges for six Scheduled Commercial Banks
Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has informed that Supervisory Colleges have been setup for the following six Scheduled Commercial Banks which have sizeable international presence:-
State Bank of India,
ICICI Bank Ltd.,
Bank of India,
Bank of Baroda,
Axis Bank Ltd. and
Punjab National Bank.
The objectives of the colleges are to enhance information exchange and cooperation among supervisors, to improve understanding of the risk profile of the banking group and thereby facilitate more effective supervision of internationally active banks.
Daily Current Affairs for 29 Jul, 17.
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