Date: 14 September 2009
1)THE US Government has cleared yet another high technology system for India, the “futuristic” shipboard Hawkeye E-2D aircraft for Airborne Early Warning (AEW) and battle management. The clearance has been described by diplomatic sources as a fallout of the “successful” visit of US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and the signing of the End User Monitoring Agreement(EUMA) of military equipment being supplied or sold by the US to India.
2)Negotiators from the World Trade Organization(WTO) member coun- tries will meet in Geneva on Monday to kickstart trade talks that broke down 14 months ago and will focus on specifics like farm and industrial products.
CORPORATE / INDUSTRY
3)THE GUJARAT High Court on Friday sanctioned the mega-merger of Reliance Petroleum(RPL) with Reliance Industries(RIL). The division bench of the high court overruled all objections about valuation report and share-swap ratio. The mega-merger will make RIL the world’s largest refinery at single location.
4)GLENMARK Pharmaceuticals, Mumbai-based mid-sized drug maker, has decided to set up a facility to produce oncology drugs in Buenos Aires in Argentina to strengthen its presence in the global cancer drug market that is expected to grow by nearly 80% to $85 billion in four years.
5)RETAIL industry circles are abuzz with the possibility of an imminent tie-up between Future Group and the world’s No.2 retail chain, Carrefour, after a hush-hush visit by the French chain’s global chief executive Lars Olofsson to India late last week and his meeting on Saturday with Future CEO Kishore Biyani. Olofsson and Mr Biyani on Saturday visited a couple of Big Bazzar and Food Bazaar outlets in Delhi, said an executive privy to the development.
MONEY / BANKING
6)MANY state-owned banks, anxious to maintain their growth rates, are queuing up before the government for money. The finance ministry has asked the banks to spell out the addtional capital they would need over the next three years for maintaining a capital-adequacy ratio (CAR) of 12% by fiscal 2012.
7)Public sector lender IDBI Bank expects Government’s decision on the sale of its Pune-based home loan subsidiary – IDBI Home Finance Ltd(IHFL) – in the next three months, a top official said.
8)Anticipating a faster recovery of the Indian economy than its global peers, London-based global reinsurance giant Lloyd’s has decided to return to India after withdrawing from the country almost two years ago.
9)Insurance companies hitting the public market will have to appoint an independent actuary as part of IPO and M&A norm to carry out valuations. The Insurance Regulatory Development Authority(Irda) is working on initial public offer(IPO) and mergers and acquisitions guidelines(M&A).
10)Indian equity indices, which managed to end last week with some smart gains following strong cues from the global markets and in- flows from the foreign fund, is likely to witness some consolidation in the coming days. Profit-booking might be seen at higher level, due to lack of any major trigger in the domestic market. Dealers in the markets say, besides performance of global markets, foreign funds activity and progress of country’s monsoon may continue to influence sentiment on the Indian equity markets in the coming days. Last week, the 30-share Sensex of Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) added 575 points or 3.67%, while S&P CNX Nifty of National Stock Exchange(NSE) gained 149.15 points or 3.19%. On Friday, last trading day of previous week, Sensex was up 47.44 points or 0.29% to end the day at 16,264.30 points, while Nifty rose by 10.15 points or 0.21% to close the day at 4,829.55 points.
11)Foreign institutional investors(FIIs) inflows into the Indian equity markets has touched $10 billion so far in the current financial year. After pulling out $11.54 bn(Rs 47,707 crore) from Indian equity markets during 2008-09, FIIs have made net investments of $10 bn(Rs 48,511 crore) in the first six months (April to September) of 2009-10. The bulk of these investments have come through the primary market, rather than buying via secondary markets.
12)Indian property developers are queuing up to raise funds through initial public offerings, buoyed by a sustained rise in equity markets and an uptick in demand for real estate. While Godrej Properties Ltd, realty arm of the Godrej Group, will make an initial share sale in the next two to three months, Oberoi Constructions plans to launch a public offering in the first quarter of 2010.
13)Hospitality major, Pride Group of Hotels, is planning an IPO of around Rs 200 crore in the first quarter of financial year 2011, besides, tapping private equity funds to fuel its Rs 800 crore expansion through 2015.
14)Gold prices may rise another Rs 2,000 for a gram to Rs 18,000 during the festive season, according to an assessment made by the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India(Assocham). The yellow metal is the only commodity which has seen huge build- up in the exchange traded funds(ETF) in the last few weeks. It is likely to gain further momentum in view of the festival demand and low international production once it convincingly stays above the psychological barrier of $1000 an ounce in global markets. Investors are now used to high prices in gold, the association said.
15)Pepper futures market in India witnessed a sharp fall last week on bearish operations at a time when the prices in all the other origins by and large remained firm. Buyers kept away anticipating that the prices might fall further. This is said to have happened in the domestic markets, despite the festival season nearing market sources told Business Line.
16)THE revival of fortunes in the real estate sector is now seeing textile companies with huge land banks making a foray into the area of property development. To date, most of the textile firms sold their land to developers. That is now making way for a different model where these firms would set up real estate companies. Among the names are Bombay Dyeing, Golden Tobacco and Century Textiles. There has been a precedent with groups like Tata, Mahindra and Godrej having turned developers. The Tata group has Tata Housing and Tata Realty while Mahindra’s venture is called Mahindra Life- space Developers. Godrej’s ventures goes by the name of Godrej Properties.
17)Claiming that it was the biggest township developer in the country, even ahead of rival DLF and Unitech, realty firm Ansal Properties & Infrastructure on Sunday said it will invest up to Rs 35,000 crore over the next 10 years to develop 19 township projects. “We are the largest township developer. We are currently developing 19 townships in North India. These townships are spread over about 7,000 acre of land,” Ansal API vice-chairman and managing director Pranav Ansal said.
18)The much-awaited auctions for 3G spectrum will be held on December 7 and the bids for the same will be invited between October 26 and November 13, the department of telecommunications said on Sunday.
BUSINESS PROCESS OUTSOURCING
19)PICK-UP and drop facility provided by employers is not a perquisite and hence not liable to tax, a recent ruling by a tax tribunal says. In a decision that has implications for the BPO and IT sectors, the Mumbai Income Tax Apellate Tribunal has held that companies providing such facilities were not liable to deduct tax on the expenditure incurred on it.
20)BLACKSTONE, the world’s biggest buyout firm and back-office company Genpact, have bid for a controlling stake held by Warburg Pincus in WNS Global Services, two people familiar with the development said.
21)Tata Consultancy Services(TCS) the country’s largest IT services provider, will use the new data centre which was set up by the Software Technology Parks of India(STPI) in Chennai as a disaster recovery for its e-passport service.
22)ONE year since after Lehman Brothers and the world financial system crumbled, the world economy has come back so quickly and unexpectedly that banks are once again making huge profits and handing out obscenely large bonuses. What was called a world-changing crisis is looking like capitalism as usual. The G20 is meeting soon to discuss a new financial architecture, but remarkably modest change seems likely. No doubt banks in future will be asked to hold more capital: may be capital requirements will be higher for the biggest banks, and in boom times. The shadow banking system will be regulated. Most derivatives will be regulated and traded on exchanges, eliminating the counter party risk that froze markets after Lehman Brothers collapsed. There is some talk of curbing financial pay but nothing specific. The G-20 meeting will talk nobly but vaguely of great things to be done, and will in practice be a photo-op for politicians.
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Economic Times www.economictimes.com
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Business Line www.businessline.in
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The Times of India www.timesofindia.com
The Hindu www.hindu.com
Deccan Chronicle www.deccan.com
The New Indian Express www.newindpress.com