Bank unions have warned to intensify their agitation if Indian Bank's Association-IBA and the government does not come forward to resolve their pending issues
United Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU), the umbrella organisation of five employee unions and four officer unions of state-run banks in the country, has called its two days strike as 'total success'.
About 10 lakh bank employees from nine unions, All India Bank Employees' Association (AIBEA), All India Bank Officers Confederation (AIBOC), National Confederation Of Bank Employees (NCBE), All India Bank Officers Association (AIBOA), Bank Employees Federation Of India (BEFI), Indian National Bank Employees Federation (INBEF), Indian National Bank Officers Congress (INBOC), National Organisation Of Bank Workers (NOBW) and National Organisation Of Bank Officers (NOBO) participated in the 48-hour strike between 10-11 February.
"The strike was called to demand immediate wage revision for bank employees and officers and to protest against retrograde banking sector reforms like privatisation of public sector banks, granting licence to corporate houses to start their own banks, encouraging foreign banks to take over our banks and siphoning out huge amounts through write off of bad loans of corporate defaulters," said CH Venkatachalam, general secretary, AIBEA in a statement.
Commenting on finance minister P Chidambaram's statement that entire profits of banks cannot be utilised for enhancing wages of employees, Mr Venkatachalam said, "That is not our demand also. We are only asking for a reasonable increase in wages that too when banks are making good profits."
Reiterating that bank employee unions are ready to resolve the issues by discussions, he said, "UFBU is always open to resolve the demands by discussions and negotiations but Indian Bank's Association (IBA) and the government should also be forthcoming. If the same negative attitude will continue, we will be left with no alternative than to further intensify the agitation. UFBU will be meeting shortly for this purpose."
Six days are over since the Nifty made a low at 5,933 during eight days of decline, but the index has not even retraced 50% of the fall. This indicates that the bulls are not confident
As we had mentioned in Monday’s closing report, the Indian benchmark indices tried to keep itself in the green. Today after a volatile session, the BSE 30-share Sensex managed to cover more than half of yesterday’s loss, while the NSE 50-share Nifty managed to make up for yesterday’s entire negative move. Today, the Nifty moved almost in the same range as yesterday while continuing to make an attempt to reach up to the level of 6,100.
The Sensex opened at 20,401 and moved in the range of 20,350 and 20,443 before closing at 20,363 (up 29 points or 0.14%). The Nifty, which opened at 6,072, hit a low of 6,053 and moved higher to hit a high of 6,082 before closing at 6,063 (up 9 points or 0.15%). The NSE recorded a volume of 47.37 crore shares.
Among the other indices on the NSE, the top five gainers were Auto (0.99%); IT (0.95%); Finance (0.53%); Service (0.44%) and Metal (0.37%) while the top five losers were Media (1.33%); Energy (0.91%); Realty (0.80%); Infra (0.51%) and Pharma (0.47%).
Of the 50 stocks on the Nifty, 25 ended in the green. The top five gainers were HCL Technologies (4.35%); Ranbaxy (2.99%); Tata Motors (2.76%); Tata Steel (2.43%) and BPCL (1.63%). The top five losers were NTPC (2.92%); Reliance (2.21%); PNB (2.16%); Hindalco (2.11%) and Hero MotoCorp (1.91%).
Of the 1,492 companies on the NSE, 645 closed in the positive, 753 closed in the negative while 94 closed flat.
The fall in Nifty from 6,346 on 23rd January lasted for eight days and 413 points. Now, six trading days are over since the Nifty touched a low at 5,933, but the index has not even retraced 50% of the fall. This indicates that the bulls are not confident. Now, only a strong US market can bring back the bulls.
Reliance Industries was among one of the top five losers today in the pack of Sensex 30 stocks. Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal said he has asked for legal cases to be filed against Reliance Industries Chairman Mukesh Ambani and policymakers over pricing of gas produced from the D6 block in the east coast. Kejriwal alleged that the company has created an artificial shortage of fuel in the country. Kejriwal said he would ask the central government to suspend the latest order on gas pricing pending an inquiry.
India's trade deficit narrowed to $9.92 billion in January 2014, from $10.14 billion in December 2013, data released by the government on Tuesday showed. On year-on-year basis, merchandise exports rose 3.79% to $26.75 billion in January 2014. Imports fell 18.07% year-on-year to $36.67 billion led by a 77% drop in gold and silver imports on the year.
The emergence of an Indian coalition government of smaller parties after elections this year may weaken the rupee and heighten risks to the nation’s credit ratings, Moody’s Investors Service said today. Moody’s rates India’s long-term foreign currency and local-currency debt at Baa3, the lowest investment grade, with a stable outlook. US indices closed marginally higher on Monday.
Federal Reserve Chairman Janet Yellen delivers her first testimony on monetary policy later in the global day today, 11 February 2014. Yellen will speak on monetary policy and the outlook for the US economy for the first time since being sworn in as the central bank's head.
All the Asian indices trading today closed in the positive. Hang Seng was the top gainer which rose 1.78%
If Chidambaram’s expectation comes from genuine concern for public sector units, then it should be demonstrated by not giving ‘informal’ directions to transfer surplus income or profit to government or declare dividends to meet budgeted ‘quota’ of receipts
Finance Minister P Chidambaram’s loud thinking at the 78th Foundation Day celebrations of Indian Overseas bank on the role expectations from the public sector banks is indicative of a welcome change in government of India (GOI)’s approach to management of public sector undertakings (PSUs) in general.
The following observations by the FM are comforting, as they signal a change in GOI’s approach to the management of public sector organizations including Life Insurance Corp of India (LIC) and banks and statutory bodies like Reserve Bank of India (RBI):
FM should walk the talk by taking the following initiatives:
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(MG Warrier is former general manager of Reserve Bank of India.)