QBiz: Alibaba Sets Singles’ Day Record; Tea Exports Rises 2.3%

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Alibaba founder Jack Ma in a file photo.
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1. Leaders May Push For China-Backed Deal At Trade Summit As US Retreats

World leaders will push for the rapid completion of a massive, China-backed trade deal that excludes the US at a summit this week, in a rebuke to rising protectionism and Donald Trump's ‘America First’ agenda.

China, Japan, India and other Asia-Pacific countries could announce a broad agreement on the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), which covers half the world's population, on the sidelines of the annual gathering.

Not only is the US absent from the deal, but Trump is skipping the summit in Singapore, highlighting how far he has pulled back from efforts to shape global trade rules and raising further questions about Washington's commitment to Asia.

(Source: The Economic Times)

2. Sebi may Tighten Liquid MF Rules

The Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) is considering a proposal to tighten rules for liquid mutual funds holding assets worth ₹8 lakh crore or more to curb volatility in flows following the challenges facing finance companies in the wake of the debt default by Infrastructure Leasing & Financial Services (IL&FS).

The capital market regulator is planning a short lock-in period for investments in liquid funds, in which investors — mostly large companies — park idle cash. Sebi may also make it mandatory for liquid funds to mark to market the value of more bonds and allow segregation of debt instruments in mutual fund portfolios that are in trouble, said three people aware of the development.

These measures are likely to be discussed at the Sebi-appointed mutual fund advisory committee meeting on Monday, 12 November.

(Source: The Economic Times)

3. Alibaba Sets Singles’ Day Record With $31 Billion in Sales

Alibaba Group Holding Ltd logged 213.5 billion yuan ($30.7 billion) in sales for its annual Singles’ Day extravaganza, setting a record as shoppers swarmed the e-commerce giant’s online bazaars. China’s largest company, which used a concurrent televised entertainment spectacle featuring Cirque du Soleil and Mariah Carey to further drum up business, reported that Xiaomi Corp., Apple Inc. and Dyson Ltd products were the top three brands in early sales.

The annual retail celebration, originally dedicated to the nation’s unattached, has become an important bellwether not just for the company, but also the country. This year’s 11 November gala offers a glimpse of consumer sentiment in China as US tensions and a tit-for-tat tariff war depress stock markets and threaten to dampen the world’s No 2 economy.

Alibaba surpassed the 100 billion yuan mark less than two hours into Singles’ Day, according to Alibaba’s news website.

(Source: LiveMint)

4. Sales Of 9 Mass Market Passenger Vehicle Makers Fell Between April And October

More than half of the 17 automobile firms selling passenger vehicles in the mass-market segment in India posted a decline in sales in the first seven months of the ongoing financial year, reflecting the continued struggles of global brands in trying to make their presence felt in the country.

According to the latest data by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers, nine companies posted a decline in the sales between April and October.

Among the major global brands which saw a decline in their sales in India during the period were Volkswagen, Renault Nissan and Skoda.

During the period, Volkswagen India saw its domestic sales decline 24.28 percent at 21,367 units, while Renault India also witnessed a drop of 26.17 percent at 47,064 units.

(Source: BloombergQuint)

5. Tea Exports Rises 2.3% to Rs 34.96 Billion in January-September Period

India's tea exports rose marginally to 173.80 million kilos during the January-September period this year from 173.52 million kilos exported during the same period last year, according to data from the Tea Board India.

Provisional data from the Board also suggested that tea export, in value terms, during the nine-month period was up by about 2.3 percent to Rs 34.96 billion as against Rs 34.17 billion in the year-ago period.

Exports to neighbouring Pakistan and China went up while the shipments to Germany and CIS countries were down.

(Source: Business Standard)

6. Foreign Investors Infuse Rs 4,800 Crore In Five Sessions On Lower Crude Prices

Foreign investors pumped in nearly Rs 4,800 crore into the Indian capital markets in the last five trading sessions, after pulling out hefty funds in October, amid cooling global crude oil prices and rising rupee.

The recent infusion comes following a net outflow of more than Rs 38,900 crore in October, which was the steepest withdrawal in nearly two years.

FPIs pulled out over Rs 21,000 crore from the capital markets (both equity and debt) in September. Before that, foreign investors had put in Rs 7,500 crore in July and August.

(Source: BloombergQuint)

7. Sebi Picks Wipro, L&T Infotech Among 7 Cos for Market Vigilance Activities

The Sebi has shortlisted seven firms, including Wipro and L&T Infotech, to build a private data storage cloud, automate its inspection of brokers and enhance analytics capabilities, as the regulator is eyeing a technological leap in surveillance and investigation functions.

Other firms on the shortlist are Accenture Solutions Capgemini Technology Services India, Hewlett Packard Enterprise (India), EIT Services India and Tharavu Technologies.

(Source: Business Standard)

8. Aircel Maxis Case: Yes Bank Wants RBI to Decide on Ashok Chawla Continuing as Chairperson

Yes Bank Ltd has sought guidance from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) over former finance secretary Ashok Chawla continuing as non-executive chairperson of its board after being named in a corruption chargesheet. This follows the National Stock Exchange of India Ltd (NSE)—also chaired by Chawla—scrutinizing his continuance on similar grounds.

Yes Bank’s nomination and remuneration committee (NRC) wrote to RBI on Friday (9 November), referring to a 4 October letter that NSE received about his continuance on the bank’s board.

(Source: LiveMint)

9. Govt Weighing Sale of 149 ONGC Fields to Private Companies

The government is weighing sale of as many as 149 small and marginal oil and gas fields of Oil and Natural Gas Corp. Ltd (ONGC) to private and foreign companies and allow the state-owned firm to focus only on big fields, people with knowledge of the development said. On the anvil is some kind of extension of the discovered small field (DSF) bid round, where discovered and producing fields of ONGC are auctioned to private firms offering the maximum share of output to the government.

This is the second attempt by the oil ministry to take away some of the fields of ONGC for private and foreign companies.

In October last year, the Directorate General of Hydrocarbons (DGH) had identified 15 producing fields with collective reserve of 791.2 million tonnes of crude oil and 333.46 billion cubic metres of gas of national oil companies for handing over to private firms in the hope that they would improve upon the baseline estimate and its extraction.

(Source: LiveMint)

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