QBiz: SEBI Sends Notice to Chanda Kochhar; EPFO Notifies Int Rate

Top business stories of the day.

5 min read
Chanda Kochchar, MD and CEO of ICICI Bank

1.SEBI Serves Notice to ICICI Bank’s Chanda Kochhar in Videocon Loan Case

Markets regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) has started proceedings against ICICI Bank Ltd for non-disclosure of information in the matter of alleged conflict of interest in the grant of loans to the Videocon group.

The company told NSE on Friday that Sebi has sent the bank and Chanda Kochhar, its MD and CEO, a notice alleging violation of Listing Obligation and Disclosure Requirements (LODR) and for not making adequate disclosures.

(Source: Livemint)

2. EPFO Notifies 8.55% Interest Rate on PF for 2017-18, Lowest in 5 Years

Retirement fund body Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) has asked its field offices to credit 8.55% interest rate for 2017-18, the lowest rate since 2012-13 fiscal, into the PF accounts of around 5 crore subscribers.

The Labour Ministry has conveyed approval of the central government to credit 8.55% rate of interest for 2017-18 into PF accounts of members, according to an order issued by the EPFO to its more than 120 field offices. The finance ministry had ratified 8.55% interest rate on EPF for the last fiscal.

But it could not be implemented because of model code of conduct for Karnataka elections.

(Source: PTI)


3. IDBI, Bank of Baroda Post Massive Q4 Losses

State-owned banks IDBI Bank and Bank of Baroda on Friday reported huge losses at the end of the March quarter after setting aside funds to cover rising bad loans.

IDBI Bank reported a net loss of Rs 5,662.76 crore in the three months ended 31 March, against Rs 3,199.77 crore during the same quarter in the previous year.

Provisions more than doubled to Rs 10,773.30 crore from Rs 3,637.49 crore at the end of the December quarter. The bank’s gross non-performing assets (NPAs) ratio rose to 27.95%, compared to 24.72% at the end of the December quarter.

(Source: Livemint)


4. Airlines May Bundle WiFi with Flight Ticket Costs

Along with a meal or preferred seat, air passengers in India may soon have the option to choose WiFi services while booking a flight ticket, a person with direct knowledge of the matter said.

Ever since the Telecom Commission approved WiFi services in domestic flights on 1 May, there has been interest from several airlines. The list includes major domestic airlines, who see this as an opportunity to increase their non-aero revenues, said a senior official at the department of telecommunications (DoT), who didn’t want to be named.

DoT is now in the process of creating a separate category of licensees called in-flight connectivity provider who will provide internet as well as voice services within Indian territorial airspace in both domestic and international flights.

(Source: Livemint)


5. Traders Carnival: Tread Carefully. This Market Is Out To Wrong-Foot You, Says Atul Suri

The Indian equity market may have touched record highs at the start of 2018 but will remain rangebound for the rest of the year and keep wrong-footing investors.

That’s according to Atul Suri of Marathon Trends Portfolio Management Service. “This year, going ahead, we will not have any massive moves on the index,” Suri told BloombergQuint on the sidelines of the four-day Traders Carnival. “The index is going to wrong-foot you. The moment you feel very bullish, the market will correct and the moment you start feeling bearish, the market is going to go up.”

This year will be more about stocks and being stock-specific. This is the year where quality is going to re-assert itself.
Atul Suri, Chief Investment Officer, Marathon Trends PMS

(Source: BloombergQuint)


6. Petrol, Diesel Prices Rise For 12 Days In A Row; Opposition Slams Modi

There is no relief for consumers as state-run oil marketers increased prices of petrol and diesel for 12 days in succession amid rising political pressure on the Narendra Modi government.

The price of petrol was hiked by 36 paise on Friday to Rs 85.65 a litre in Mumbai, while that of diesel was raised by 24 paise to Rs 73.20 a litre, according to data released by Indian Oil Corporation Ltd. Petrol and diesel are costlier by Rs 3 a litre and Rs 2.77 a litre, respectively, since 14 May, when oil marketing companies resumed daily price revisions after a 19-day freeze in the run-up to the Karnataka elections.

The continuous rise in fuel prices is attributable to a rally in oil prices in the past few weeks. Brent crude, which snapped its three-day gain and fell 1.3 percent to close at $78.79 a barrel on Thursday, was trading 0.1 percent lower at $78.67 a barrel as of 10:15 a.m on Friday, 25 May.

(Source: BloombergQuint)


7. Tata Motors Shelves Its RaceMo Sports Car Project

Tata Motors has shelved its ambitious sports car project, RaceMo, which was unveiled with much fanfare at the Geneva International Motor Show in 2017.

The RaceMo is among the projects in Tata Motors’ passenger and commercial vehicles segments where the company has pulled the plug after reviewing its capital policy on product development.

The automaker has “introduced a new capitalisation gateway in our product approval process on affordability”, according to Tata Motors Group CFO PB Balaji. That means it “even though if there's a business case that is valid, we'll take it forward only if it meets the affordability gateway,” Balaji told analysts.

(Source: PTI)


8. Trump Effect? Future of 60,000 Spouses of Indian H-1B Visa Holders at Stake

The move to rescind work authorisation to certain categories of H-4 visa holders is in final stages, the Trump administration has told a US court.

H-4 visas are issued to the spouses of H-1B visa holders, a significantly large number of whom are high-skilled professionals from India.

The Trump administration is planning to end the Obama-era rule allowing spouses of H1-B visa holders to work legally in the US, a move that could have a devastating impact on more than 70,000 H-4 visa holders who have work permits.


9. IHH Extends Validity of Its 'Enhanced Revised Offer' for Fortis Till 30 June

Fortis Healthcare (FHL) on Friday said that Malaysia's IHH Healthcare Berhad has extended the validity of its "Enhanced Revised Offer" to invest in the company.

As per a BSE filing, FHL said that its Board has received a letter from IHH for extending the acceptance period for its offer to 30 June from the earlier date of 29 May. IHH has proposed to invest directly into the company at Rs 175 per share cost.

"In order to enable the reconstituted Board to fully consider and evaluate our proposal, we now extend the acceptance period of the enhanced revised IHH proposal..." IHH Healthcare Berhad's Managing Director and Group CEO Tan See Leng said in the letter to the Fortis Board.

(Source: IANS)

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