QBiz: GST May Be Recast Next Week; Reliance to Launch Own JioCoin

Here is a roundup of the top business stories of the day.

4 min read
Mukesh Ambani’s elder son Akash Ambani is leading the JioCoin project.

1. GST May Be Recast Next Week to Make Compliance Easier

India is set to unveil another revamp of the goods and services tax (GST) regime next week aimed at making compliance simpler. The GST Council meeting on 18 January is expected to take up changes in the definitions of terms such as supply and handicrafts as part of this effort besides replacing the three forms that need to be submitted with one, said two government officials aware of the development. It may also drop the requirement for upfront invoice matching, they said. “These changes would be taken up by the council at the upcoming meeting,” said one of the officials.

(Source: Economic Times)

2. Digital Deals Drive TCS' Growth in Third Quarter

Tata Consultancy Services Ltd’s quarterly profit met estimates as India's largest software outsourcer continued to increase its share of revenue from cloud computing, big data and digital services in a seasonally weak quarter.

TCS' profit in October-December rose 1.3 percent sequentially to Rs 6,531 crore, according to its stock exchange filing. That’s largely in line with the consensus of analyst estimates tracked by Bloomberg who'd pegged the profit at Rs 6,552 crore.

(Source: BloombergQuint)

3. Reliance Jio Planning Its Own Cryptocurrency Called JioCoin

After disrupting the telecom sector with its free offers and hyper-competitive tariffs, Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd plans to create its own cyptocurrency, JioCoin.

With Mukesh Ambani’s elder son Akash Ambani leading the JioCoin project, Reliance Jio plans to build a 50-member team of young professionals to work on blockchain technology, which can also be used to develop applications such as smart contracts and supply chain management logistics.

(Source: Livemint)

4. Oil Reaches $70 a Barrel for First Time in Three Years

Oil topped $70 a barrel in London for the first time in three years as production cuts by OPEC and rising demand whittle away a global surplus.

Brent crude futures, used in the pricing of more than half the world’s oil, rose as much as 1.2 percent to the highest since 4 December 2014. Prices rallied after the longest stretch of declines in US inventories during winter in a decade.

(Source: BloombergQuint)

5. Govt May Hold on to Around a 26% Stake in Air India After Sell-Off

India may not fully privatise its beleaguered airline Air India. While policy think tank NITI Aayog had recommended a 100 percent stake sale, the government may hold on to around a 26 percent stake to be sold later.

A final call, however, would be taken by the group of ministers looking into the disinvestment process.

Sources in the know of the development said the government believed privatisation would increase the airline’s efficiency and make it profitable, enriching the value of the remaining stake with the government.

6. Price Waterhouse Clients to Work on Alternatives After SEBI Ban

Indian companies are working on appointing new auditors in their next board meetings to replace auditing firm Price Waterhouse (PW), which has been banned by market regulator the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) for two years, from April this year, for its role in the Satyam scam.

The firm’s chairman in India, Shyamal Mukherjee, meanwhile, wrote to all clients on Thursday, re-iterating that it would appeal against the decision and expects a positive outcome.

PW’s clients said they would wait for the next few weeks as the auditing firm would complete the audit till March 2018 and, at the same time, would look at putting Plan B in place.

7. Tribunal Revokes IRDAI Order to Transfer Sahara Life Business to ICICI Prudential

The Securities Appellate Tribunal revoked the insurance regulator’s decision to transfer struggling Sahara Group’s life insurance business to ICICI Prudential Life Insurance Company Ltd to protect policyholders.

The tribunal today asked the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India to hear the case afresh by giving Sahara India Life Insurance Company Ltd an opportunity to respond “in consonance with the principles of natural justice,” according to the order uploaded on the tribunal’s website. The IRDAI should decide on the matter within three months of getting Sahara Group’s response, it said.

(Source: BloombergQuint)

8. First Time in 14 Months, Credit to Industry Expands

Hinting at a revival in the economy, the industrial sector witnessed an expansion in credit growth for the first time in 14 months in November 2017 over the same period the previous year.

According to RBI data released Thursday, gross bank credit expanded 8.3 percent in November, and credit off-take by the industry by 1 percent.

9. CEO Compensation: Larger Parts of Salary Components Being Linked to Performance

A few days ago Infosys announced a pay package of new CEO Salil Parekh lower than that of predecessor Vishal Sikka after criticism of the exorbitant salaries Sikka and other key management members got. The reality, however, is that CEOs still continue to draw top dollars, though companies are getting more cautious by linking a major chunk of the pay mix to performance, experts said.

The CEO compensation mix is increasingly changing in favour of variable pay as organisations seek greater accountability for business performance, said human resource and executive compensation professionals.

(Source: Economic Times)

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