Govt may restore interest subsidy for exporters

The move is an effort to maintain the country's competitiveness in the global market wherein small exporters may get subsidy between 3.5%-3.75% while for large corporates it may be 2% subvention

New Delhi: After taking a decision to end the tax-refund Duty Entitlement PassBook (DEPB) scheme from 1st October, the government is likely to restore interest subsidy for exporters to maintain the country's competitiveness in the global market, reports PTI.

"Small exporters may get subsidy between 3.5%-3.75% whereas for large corporates it may be 2% subvention," a source said. The decision in this regard may be announced soon, he said.

He said discussions have already been held between top exporters' organisations and the finance ministry in this regard.

The interest subvention scheme, which lapsed on 31st March, had offered 2% discount on the interest rate charged by banks.

Exporters have been putting pressure on the government that they should be given access to finance at subsidised interest rates since they are to compete with China, where borrowing cost is quite less.

Besides, under the alternative scheme to the DEPB the stimulus which was given in the form of sops to the extent of 2%-3% has also been withdrawn.

Exporters' body Federation of Indian Export Organisations (FIEO) said the robust growth in exports witnessed in the April-August period may not be sustained in the third and fourth quarter of the current fiscal.

"Exports growth may not maintain the tempo due to rising credit and input cost. Exports may grow merely 10%-12% in the second half of the current fiscal," FIEO president Ramu Deora said.

During April-August this fiscal, exports increased by 54.2% to $134.5 billion.

On rupee depreciation, which fell 41 paise today to an over two-year low of Rs48.74 against the US dollar, Mr Deora said that it is not much of a gain to the exporters.

"Every exporter is also an importer. Weak rupee has increased the raw material cost by 4% to 5%, thus, making our imports expensive," he said.

FIEO said exporters are also under pressure to maintain their competitiveness overseas and double their exports to $450 billion by 2013-14.


For youth, Internet is a basic necessity: Survey

The Cisco study pointed out that four out of five college students and young employees believed that the internet is important and an essential part of their lives. In India, 95% of the college students and young employees surveyed said the internet is as important in their lives as water, food, air and shelter

New Delhi/Chennai: Internet access seems to have become a basic need, ranking behind air, water, food and shelter for at least for 33% of the respondents to a global survey by networking giant Cisco, reports PTI.

The study also pointed out that four out of five college students and young employees surveyed believed that the internet is important and an essential part of their lives.

The 2011 Cisco Connected World Technology Report conducted by third-party market research firm InsightExpress surveyed 1,441 college students (aged 18-24) and 1,412 employees (aged 21-29) from 14 countries, including the US, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, UK, France, Russia, India and China.

In India, 95% of the college students and young employees surveyed said the internet is as important in their lives as water, food, air and shelter.

"Internet is no longer a 'good to have', it is now a 'must have'. There is a conscious need to be connected at all times from all locations, accelerated by the growth of social media and smart mobile devices which provide easy access to the Internet," Cisco India and SAARC vice-president (Borderless Networks) Mahesh Gupta told reporters in a teleconference.

The report provides an insight into this phenomenon by focusing on current and future employees and provides a barometer on how companies can best address their needs, expectations and issues, he added.

About 64% of the respondents (two out of three) said they would prefer an internet connection over a car.

In addition, about 40% of respondents globally (two out of five) said the worldwide web is more important than dating or going out with friends or even listening to music.

On the importance of social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter to the younger generation, the report said 27% (one in four) said they would rather update their status messages on Facebook than party, date or hang out with friends, if there had to be a choice between them.

On the importance of mobile devices in their day-to-day lives, the study said 71% of respondents in India answered in the affirmative, the second-highest number after the UK (74%) and ahead of countries like Australia (66%), China (62%) and the US (62%).

The survey also revealed that smartphones and laptops trumped televisions in the survey respondents' preference, with only one out of 10 college students opting for TV as the most important device in their lives.

The report also strongly indicated that the use of paper has gone down significantly among the youth, as two out of five students have not bought a book from a bookstore in the last two years.

In terms of usage of social networking site Facebook, Indian respondents were ranked highest in the survey, with 92% of students checking their accounts daily, while one-third (33%) check their virtual walls at least five times a day.

The survey also said 85% of employees in India confirmed adding their colleagues and managers as friends on Facebook.


Share prices suffer biggest fall in two years: Thursday Closing Report

More decline on the cards following global sell-off

The risks associated with the negative outlook for the US economy announced by the chief of the US central bank on Wednesday night, resulted in the domestic benchmarks recording their biggest one-day fall in more than two years. Both the indices opened well below yesterday's close and the slide continued for the entire day, with the Sensex closing 4.13% down and the Nifty losing 4.08%.

The rout in the US market overnight after Federal Reserve chief Ben Bernanke's warning that the outlook for the world's largest economy was grim, roiled Asian markets this morning and all the major bourses in the region traded with deep cuts. The Indian market opened lower today, extending Wednesday's decline. The Nifty opened 79 points lower at 5,054 and the Sensex resumed trade below the 17,000 mark at 16,828, down by a huge 237 points.

The indices touched their intra-day highs in initial trade, the Nifty at 5,060 and the Sensex at 16,834. However, an institutional sell-off right from the opening bell kept the benchmarks and sectoral gauges in the red.

At the end of its two-day meeting on Wednesday, the Federal Open Market Committee said it would purchase $400 billion of long-term debt and sell an equal amount of short-term treasuries, thus extending the average maturities of treasuries in its portfolio. It, however, added, "There are significant downside risks to the economic outlook, including strains in global financial markets." The plan-named Operation Twist-would also persuade banks to put some of their idle reserves to work. The depressive comments cast a gloom on the markets worldwide.

The domestic market continued to plunge in the noon session, as the European markets opened similarly lower. The market fell to the day's low in the last half hour, the Nifty to 4,908 and the Sensex to 16,316. However, the benchmarks closed marginally above the lows on a minor pullback towards the end of the session. At the close, the Nifty closed below the 5,000 mark at 4,924, down 210 points and the Sensex tumbled 704 points to settle at 16,361. The National Stock Exchange (NSE) witnessed trade of 62.44 crore shares today.

The advance-decline ratio on the NSE was a dismal 183:1549.

The Indian rupee also fell over 1.9% today to its lowest level in the past 26 months, on the back of developments in the US. In intra-day trade today the rupee touched 49.11 to a dollar after opening at 48.82, then pulled back a bit, after the Reserve Bank of India sold dollars, it was reported.

The mayhem in the market did not spare the broader indices and the BSE Mid-cap index and the BSE Small-cap index declined 3.10% and 3.14%, respectively.

All sectoral indices settled in the negative. The BSE Realty (down 5.67%) was the top loser, followed by BSE Metal (down 4.34%), BSE Oil & Gas (down 4.19%), BSE TECk (down 4.10%) and BSE Bankex (down 3.98%).

The Sensex, too, had no green ticks today. The top losers were Jaiprakash Associates (down 9.33%), DLF (down 7.16%), Sterlite Industries (down 6.82%), Reliance Industries (down 6.16%) and Tata Motors (down 5.98%).

ACC (up 0.03%) was the lone gainer on the Nifty. The major losers were Jaiprakash Associates (down 9.81%), Reliance Communications (down 8.26%), DLF (down 7.83%), Sterlite Industries (down 7.27%) and RIL (down 6.85%).

Markets in Asia settled sharply lower. Adding to the woes, HSBC's China Flash PMI showed factory output at 49.4 in September, down for the third month on a decline in new orders. The slowdown in new orders is expected to retard export growth, analysts said.

The Shanghai Composite fell 2.78%, the Hang Seng tumbled 4.85%, the Jakarta Composite dived 8.88%, the KLSE Composite declined 2.20%, the Nikkei 225 tanked 2.07%, the Straits Times sank 2.55%, the Seoul Composite fell 2.90% and the Taiwan Weighted tanked 3.06%.

Back home, foreign institutional investors were net buyers of equities worth Rs243.45 crore on Wednesday. On the other hand, domestic institutional investors were net sellers of shares worth Rs15.48 crore.

State-owned mining major NMDC has inked an agreement to purchase a 50% stake in Australia-based Legacy Iron Ore, as cornerstone investor for nearly A$19 million. The deal will be the first foreign acquisition for NMDC, which has been scouting for natural resources abroad in countries like Russia, United States, Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, Canada and South Africa. The stock plunged 4.90% to close at Rs239.80 on the NSE.

Public sector lender Union Bank of India has sought capital support of Rs350 crore from the government to shore up its lending capacity. The proposed capital infusion would help increase the government's stake in the bank from 57.07% to 58%. The stock tanked 3.92% to settle at Rs232.70.

IT services major HCL Technologies today opened a new Global Delivery Centre in Redmond, Washington, where the company will initially invest $4 million (about Rs19 crore), leading to the creation of 400 jobs over the next two years.
The centre will support the company's continued global expansion plans and increased focus on business innovation in software product development, test engineering and business-critical platform development, HCL Technologies said in a statement. The stock tumbled 4.95% to close at Rs385.05.



Govind Gopal Shanbhag

6 years ago

Sincere appeal - Iam required to invest nearly Rs.1,75,000/- in 80CC (including my wife) - is it a good period to buy ELSS mutual funds if so which fund you recommend.



In Reply to Govind Gopal Shanbhag 6 years ago

Dear Mr.Shanbhag,
Fidelity Tax Advantage and Religare Tax Plan are good options but please spread out your investments over the next 6 months till March 2012 for F.Y.2011-12.


In Reply to Govind Gopal Shanbhag 6 years ago

There are a couple of good funds such as HDFC Tax Saver Fund, Fidelity Tax Advantage Fund. Check the past performance of 3 to 5 years.

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