QBiz: India in Top 100 in Ease of Doing Business Index & More

Top business stories of the day.

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File photo of Finance Minister Arun Jaitley.
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1. India Jumps 30 Places on World Bank's Ease of Doing Business Index

India jumped 30 places on the World Bank’s Doing Business rankings as Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s efforts to ease norms and push through reforms start to pay off.

“India stands out this year as one of the 10 economies that improved the most in the areas measured by doing business,” the World Bank’s Doing Business 2018 report said. India has been ranked at 100, up from 130 last year, among the 190 economies assessed on various parameters.

The improvement came as India implemented reforms or eased rules for construction permits, landing credit, protecting minority investors, paying taxes, cross-border trade and resolving insolvency. “One-time event such as demonetisation, which is particular only to India, was not taken into consideration,” Annette Dixon, vice-president, South Asia Region at World Bank, said in an interview with BloombergQuint.

(Source: BloombergQuint)

2. Tata-Docomo Dispute Settled as Tata Sons Pays $1.27 Bn Arbitration Award

Japan’s NTT Docomo Inc said on Tuesday that it had received from Tata Sons Ltd the 144.9 billion yen ($1.27 billion) it was awarded by an international arbitration court last year for its stake in Tata Teleservices Ltd (TTSL).

The payment marks the exit of the Japanese company from TTSL and brings the curtain down on a dispute that broke out after Docomo’s 2014 decision to exit from the venture in which it had purchased a stake in 2009.

“Concurrent with the receipt of the above amount, all shares in TTSL held by DOCOMO have been transferred to Tata Sons and companies designated by Tata Sons,” the Japanese company said in a filing with the Tokyo Stock Exchange.

(Source: Livemint)

3. Raghuram Rajan Ideal to Head US Federal Reserve: Barron's Magazine

Can former RBI governor Raghuram Rajan head the US Federal Reserve? Yes, he would be an ideal choice to lead the American central bank, says global financial magazine Barron’s.

US President Donald Trump is expected to announce a successor to Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, whose term expires early next year.

“If sports teams can recruit the best talent from around the globe, why not central banks?” asked an article in Barron’s magazine while pitching Rajan as the next head of the Federal Reserve.

(Source: BloombergQuint)

4. Next Big GST Move Could Reduce Prices of Many Items

India could review the application of the highest 28 percent slab under the goods and services tax (GST) and consider imposing a lower rate on items of frequent use, with policymakers supporting a move along these lines.

Such a move will reduce prices of many goods, thus helping to boost demand. The Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) has pitched for such a shift to revive industry, especially small businesses that are regarded as engines of employment generation.

5. Reliance Jio Effect: Bharti Airtel's Net Profit down 76% to Rs 343 Crore

Thanks to hyper competition unleashed by Reliance Jio, the country's top operator Bharti Airtel suffered a consolidated net profit drop of 76.5 per cent to Rs 343 crore from Rs 1,462 crore last year.

The consolidated revenues of the company spanning 17 countries — India, Sri Lanka and 15 in Africa — declined 11.7 per cent to Rs 21,777 crore for the reported period as compared to Rs 24,652 crore last year.

6. Mahindra Logistics IPO Subscribed 48% on the First Day

The Rs 829.36 crore initial public offering (IPO) of Mahindra Logistics Ltd, the logistics arm of automobile maker Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd (M&M), was subscribed 48 percent on Tuesday, the first day of the share sale.

According to data from stock exchanges, as of 5pm, the portion of shares reserved for institutional investors saw a subscription of 35 percent, while the portions reserved for retail investors and high net-worth individuals were subscribed 76 percent and 3 percent, respectively.

Mahindra Logistics has priced its shares in a price band of Rs425-429 apiece. The IPO will close on 2 November.

(Source: Livemint)

7. Infosys to Blame for GST Network Glitches: Government Officials

Infosys, for long the face of India’s software sector, finds its management of the GST information technology backbone under scrutiny at the highest levels of the government. It had won the Rs 1,380-crore deal for developing and running GST’s backend in 2015.

Three top government functionaries expressed strong disappointment with the company over frequent glitches that have beset the Goods and Services Tax Network (GSTN), leading to extension of deadlines for returns several times.

8. Arun Jaitley: Taking India to Top 50 in World Bank Doing Business Index Doable

After India hit a century in World Bank’s ease of doing business rankings, finance minister Arun Jaitley on Tuesday said taking India to the Top 50 is doable.

“I think it is possible to take India to the first 50 ranks in (World Bank’s) Doing Business ranking, as envisioned in Prime Minister Narendra Modi,” said Jaitley at a press conference in Delhi. “In parameters such as doing business, dealing with construction permits, enforcing contracts and registering property where India is still lagging behind, there is reason to believe that we can improve our position significantly,” he added.

(Source: Livemint)

9. Bitcoin Futures Could Open Floodgates into Crypto Markets

Bitcoin is spiking to a record after CME Group Inc said it’s planning to launch bitcoin futures as the move could open the floodgates of investors who have been standing on the sidelines as bitcoin soared over 500 percent this year.

The cryptocurrency jumped as much as 5.2 percent to $6,416.39 after the CME said it will start offering trading the derivatives in the fourth quarter. Futures will be settled in cash based on a bitcoin index that CME started calculating in November.

(Source: BloombergQuint)

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