Fixed-income Options
In 2015, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) pared rates by 125bps (basis points) to 6.75%, bringing them to the lowest level since June 2011. When RBI reduces interest rates, it affects the rates of all other fixed-income products. Over the past year or so, bond yields have fallen considerably. However, yields fell much before RBI started cutting the repo rate. Banks have reduced interest rates on fixed deposits (FDs). From 8.50% a year ago, most banks are currently offering interest rates for one-year deposits of 7.75%. Will RBI cut rates further is the big question? With inflation inching up again in October 2015, RBI may go slow on further rate cuts. In such a scenario, which fixed-income option will work out best for savers? Will debt schemes of mutual funds continue to be a good bet? Our Cover Story analyses the factors that affect debt schemes and suggests the best fixed-income options available for investors.
 
Buying a home is one of the biggest financial decisions one takes. Unfortunately, most buyers are taken for a ride by builders. R Balakrishnan has a put together a few suggestions to make buying real estate trouble-free.
 
It’s been over a decade since many investors of the NSE and BSE, some of them marquee names, have been trapped without an exit route even as the two Exchanges, and the regulator, have found novel ways to postpone listing. These investors are now getting restless, pressurising the government to expedite the approval for listing, writes Sucheta, in Different Strokes. The listing, which now seems almost certain, will make the Exchanges accountable and more transparent. While identity theft may be a serious issue worldwide, in India, people in power are taking it ever so lightly. Sucheta, in Crosshairs, highlights the tolerance of powerful Indians for shady records, benami dealings and incorrect reporting to statutory databases. 
 
On 19th December, Moneylife Smart Savers will be conducting a seminar on “How To Start Investing in Shares” at a nominal fee of Rs500 per person where participants will learn about investing in shares from scratch. For details, check out http://goo.gl/fRQdjc

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Sena demands Maharashtra advocate general's resignation
The Shiv Sena on Monday demanded the resignation of Maharashtra Advocate General Shrihari Aney for propounding the cause of a separate Vidarbha state, even as pro-Vidarbha groups rushed to his support.
 
Sena MP Sanjay Raut made the demand while reacting to Aney's statement seeking a referendum on the sensitive issue.
 
Aney stuck to his stand by saying he respected the Sena sentiments, but what he had stated was "historically correct".
 
He said legislators have a right to raise issues in the assembly and even (Shiv Sena) could raise it, though Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis sought to downplay the matter.
 
On Sunday, speaking at a function to release his book, 'Vidarbha Gatha' (Vidarbha Saga), Aney asked for a referendum on the issue and said if 51 percent people vote in favour, the centre must carve out a separate Vidarbha from Maharashtra.
 
Aney -- grandson of former Congress MP and pro-Vidarbha campaigner -- expressed confidence that more than 80 percent of the people in the region would vote in favour (of Vidarbha) and that is why the centre was reluctant to take it up.
 
Endorsing Aney, senior Congress leader and moving spirit behind Vidarbha Rajya Andolan Samiti (VRAS) Vikram Bokey said that in a mini-referendum conducted last year in Akola, Amravati, Bhandara, Chandrapur, Nagpur and Yavatmal, 97 percent of the respondents voted in favour of separate state.
 
"The 2.50 crore people of Vidarbha strongly feel that the region has faced the brunt of stepmotherly treatment by non-Vidarbha leaders and parties. On behalf of our top activists Shriniwas Khandawale, Wamanrao Chatap, Ram Newale and others, we urged the Bharatiya Janata Party to implement its election promises and immediately carve out a separate Vidarbha," Bokey told IANS.
 
Criticising Aney's statement, Congress senior leader in Council Sanjay Dutt asked: "How can a Constitutional authority like the advocate-general representing the entire state, demanding its splitting and making a separate Vidarbha?"
 
Aney pointed out that several referendums by NGOs and other groups, have indicated the pro-Vidarbha sentiments clearly, local bar associations in all 11 districts there have passed unanimous resolutions favouring Vidarbha.
 
Bokey added that the nature and mindset of the people there is different and "they feel that their unique identity will be protected in a separate state".
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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Sushma Swaraj to visit Pakistan, meet Nawaz Sharif
External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj will on Tuesday travel to Pakistan where she will meet Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, just days after the National Security Advisers (NSAs) of the two countries met in Thailand.
 
"EAM Sushma Swaraj to lead Indian delegation for Heart of Asia 5th Ministerial Meeting on Afghanistan on December 9 in Islamabad," India's external affairs ministry's official spokesperson Vikas Swarup tweeted.
 
Earlier in the day, union Minister Rajiv Pratap Rudy said: "Tomorrow (Tuesday) Sushma Swaraj is leaving for Islamabad and will give a statement after coming back."
 
"The government will brief in detail on talks in both houses (parliament) once Sushma Swaraj returns from Islamabad," Rudy told the media in Delhi.
 
In Islamabad, Pakistan prime minister's Adviser on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz said he was looking forward to meet Sushma Swaraj.
 
"Talks are the only solution," the Daily Pakistan quoted Aziz as saying.
 
Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani and Sushma Swaraj will arrive in Islamabad on Wednesday and Tuesday respectively to attend the two-day summit.
 
Aziz said there have been breakthroughs in dialogue with Afghanistan and India and the Pakistani relationship with two countries will now further be strengthened.
 
Matters of conflict between Pakistan and India will be discussed in the meeting and a road map will be devised to resume the composite bilateral dialogue during the visit, he said.
 
Asked whether the proposed Pakistan-India Cricket series was also discussed during the meeting of the national security advisors in Bangkok, Aziz said it remained confined to matters related to national security and mutual ties.
 
Sushma Swaraj's visit comes after the NSAs of India and Pakistan met in Bangkok on Sunday and "agreed to carry forward the constructive engagement".
 
A joint statement issued after the Bangkok meeting said Ajit Doval of India and Naseer Khan Janjua of Pakistan held discussions "in a candid, cordial and constructive atmosphere".
 
Foreign secretaries S. Jaishanker of India and Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry of Pakistan also took part in the meeting.
 
"Discussions covered peace and security, terrorism, Jammu and Kashmir, and other issues including tranquility along the LoC (Line of Control)", the statement said.
 
Disclaimer: Information, facts or opinions expressed in this news article are presented as sourced from IANS and do not reflect views of Moneylife and hence Moneylife is not responsible or liable for the same. As a source and news provider, IANS is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article.

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COMMENTS

Shirish Sadanand Shanbhag

1 year ago

India Pakistan dialogue,in past 68 years has not given any break through, over several Prime Ministers of both the countries.
Whether EAM Sushma Swaraj or PM Narendra Modi, it will not make any difference in improving the peace relationship between two countries.
To add to this conflicting relationship, Jammu & Kashmir state (J&K) is not interested in deletion of Article 370, and to become fully integral part of India. In case J&K state want special provisions, it can be added by creating a new Article 371-J, where Articles 371, and 371-A to 371-I, have special provisions to different states of India, where they don't have any conflict with existing Constitution of India.

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