Kolkata: Reserve Bank of India (RBI) governor D Subbarao today said the central bank was unable to discern a "clear-cut" public opinion on the proposed norms for issuance of new banking licences, as divergent feedback was received on a discussion paper put up in the public domain, reports PTI.
"We found, not surprisingly, that that there is no clear cut public opinion on new bank licensing issues," Mr Subbarao told reporters after a meeting of the RBI's Central Board here. He said the gist of the feedback would be put up on the RBI website in ten days' time.
The RBI had sought stakeholders' views on issues related to the initial capital of new banks given licences, the way promoters' capital would be diluted, whether corporates should be allowed to set up banks, whether non-banking finance companies (NBFCs) should be converted into banks and the business models for the new entrants.
"Some said that corporates should not be allowed for standard reasons, some said they should be allowed as times have changed," he said.
Similarly, there was a broad spectrum of opinion on the issue of initial capital and dilution of capital, he said.
"There is no clear-cut opinion on each of these issues," he said.
"We will study the feedback we have got and then come up with draft guidelines by the end of January 2011, after further examination of all the issues," Mr Subbarao said.
Mr Subbarao said the Malegam committee constituted by the RBI to examine issues related to microfinance institutions (MFIs) were also discussed by the central board.
He said that YH Malegam, who is also a board member of the RBI, had indicated the report might be submitted ahead of the target deadline of end-January 2011.
As an interim measure, he said the RBI would convene a meeting of banks to understand their concerns about the MFIs.
Mr Subbarao said the RBI would also examine whether anything more needed to be done to keep the struggling MFI industry afloat.
Meanwhile, he said that the Malegam committee is actively working on the report and would be visiting Andhra Pradesh next week, to meet the chief minister and other stakeholders there as well as in other parts of the country.
New Delhi: Claiming that it would be tough to achieve complete migration of broadcast services from analogue to digital system by 2013 as recommended by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), the government today said the needs of stakeholders must be protected, reports PTI.
“This migration will be a complex exercise. It also requires huge amount of investment from various stakeholders.
All their needs must be protected. Issues like procuring set-top boxes on a huge scale will also have to be considered,” information & broadcasting secretary Raghu Menon said.
He was addressing a seminar ‘Digital visions at addressable India’ organised by the Cable and Satellite Broadcasting Association of Asia (CASBAA).
On the recommendations of TRAI concerning complete digitisation by 2013, he said based on the ministry's interaction with the industry the sunset date of achieving this migration by 2013 seems tough.
“Attempting to achieving this (switch over from analogue to digital) seems tough by 2013 and it should be aligned with the government road map... in which the target is 2017”, Mr Menon said.
He added that national broadcaster Prasar Bharti was on the path of digitising its operations and that the 2013 dateline set for the 1st phase also seemed tough.
“The government is spending Rs152 crore for the 1st phase of digitisation of Prasar Bharti's broadcast services.
However the dateline for this also seems tough to achieve,” Mr Menon said.
Commenting on direct-to-home services, he said it was on a “high growth path” and that it had many miles to go as it had only touched 23 million households of the 230 million TV viewers in the country.
Mr Menon also said that media and TV entertainment industry had witnessed a robust growth despite the global financial meltdown.
“This sector was unaffected by the financial meltdown as it witnessed a growth of 11.8% during this period,” the I&B secretary said.
Mr Menon said the government was keen to take the policy on introduction of mobile TV services forward.
“A committee was formed to look into this issue and give its recommendations. It has done so and we want to take this ahead. Several issues including its spectrum will also have to be looked into,” Mr Menon said.
The broader markets were thrashed for the fifth successive day today on offloading by institutional investors. The sell-off pulled the market down more than 2%, the biggest drop this week.
The market opened with minor gains, but profit-taking in early trade sent the key indices into the red. A recovery followed soon, lifting the market higher. However, choppy trade and another bout of selling added to the market's woes. A rise in weekly food inflation numbers also added to the pressure. Mid-cap and small-cap stocks continued to be a drag for the fifth day in a row. The losses widened in the post-noon session sending the indices further southwards.
Finally, the Sensex tumbled 454.12 points (2.31%) lower to close at 19,242.36. The index touched a high of 19,771.09 and a low of 19,160.87 during the session. The Nifty declined 137.20 points (2.32%) at 5,766.50. The benchmark scaled an intraday high of 5,927.30 and a low of 5,742.30.
The losers outperformed the gainers today. The Sensex ended with 27 declining stocks against three gainers. The Nifty settled with 44 stocks in the red and six advancing stocks. Among the broader indices, the BSE Mid-cap index plunged 4.48% while the BSE Small-cap index dived 5.92%.
Wipro (up 0.67%), Infosys (up 0.54%) and ITC (up 0.39%) were the only gainers on the Sensex. The laggards were led by Reliance Infrastructure (down 6.62%), Reliance Communications (down 5.66%), Hindalco Industries (down 5.49%), Cipla (down 4.92%) and Tata Motors (down 4.71%).
BSE IT (up 0.03%) was the lone gainer in the sectoral space today. BSE Consumer Durables (down 6.29%), BSE Realty (down 4.76%), BSE Metal (down 3.67%), BSE Healthcare (down 3.53%) and BSE Auto (down 3.33%) were the top sectoral losers.
A week after declining to an 18-month low, food inflation rose again, albeit marginally, to 8.69% for the week ended 27th November on the back of the rise in prices of rice, onions, fruits and milk. Food inflation in the previous week stood at 8.60%, which was the lowest since May last year.
The sudden rise in food inflation, after a record fall, is likely to be a cause of worry for the government which has targeted an overall inflation rate of 6% by March next year. Overall inflation, which also takes into account manufactured goods, primary articles and fuels, was at 8.58% in October. The data for November is expected next week.
Asian markets, with the exception of the Shanghai Composite, finished higher. The gains were supported by positive economic data from Japan and Australia. Japanese gross domestic product grew at an annualized 4.5% rate in the three months ended 30th September, faster than the 3.9% reported last month. Australia's unemployment rate fell to 5.2% for November from 5.4% in October, but the number of employed rose 54,600, nearly three times higher than analysts' estimates. However, the Chinese market was down on concerns about a rate hike.
The Hang Seng gained 0.28%, the Jakarta Composite was up 0.21%, the KLSE Composite rose 0.24%, the Nikkei 225 climbed 0.50%, the Straits Times added 0.14%, the Seoul Composite jumped 1.21% and the Taiwan Weighted advanced 0.58%. On the other hand, the Shanghai Composite tanked 0.82%.
Chairman of the prime minister's economic advisory council C Rangarajan has asked microfinance institutions (MFIs) to overhaul their "flawed" business model for sustainability. This comes on the heels of former Reserve Bank of India (RBI) governor YV Reddy likening MFIs to moneylenders.
On Wednesday, Wall Street settled with marginal gains, led by financial and technology stocks. Banking stocks ended higher on hopes of higher profits going forward. A positive outlook from technology majors Texas Instruments Inc and Nouvellus Systems Inc boosted the sector. Besides, a strengthening dollar kept a tab on commodity prices.
The Dow rose 13.32 points (0.12%) to 11,372.48. The S&P 500 added 4.53 points (0.37%) to 1,228.28. The Nasdaq advanced 10.67 points (0.41%) to 2,609.16.
Foreign institutional investors were net sellers of stocks worth Rs1,484.90 crore on Wednesday. On the other hand, domestic institutional investors were net buyers of stocks worth Rs409.05 crore.
Pipavav Shipyard Ltd (down 9.50%) has informed the Bombay Stock Exchange that the company has signed Protocol with Rosoboron Export, a Russian government arm, for defence co-operation with foreign governments.
This protocol is for four additional numbers of Stealth frigates under Russian collaboration at the yard of the company. The Russians have delivered three Stealth frigates to India and balance four are under construction at a Russian yard. The company is the first private sector shipyard in India post independence to be approved for building of warships. The protocol also covers the mid-life updates, dry docking, repairs and modernization of submarines of Russian origin in use by the Indian Navy.
Tata Group firm Rallis India (down 2.69%) has said that it has acquired majority stake in Bangalore-based seed research firm Metahelix Life Sciences for nearly Rs100 crore in what was an all-cash deal.
With the signing of this deal, the company has announced its foray into seeds business, which is a key focus area of the firm under its growth agenda, the company said in a filing to the Bombay Stock Exchange on Thursday.
Strides Arcolab (down 3.14%) has entered into an agreement to acquire 70% stake in Inbiopro Solutions, a Bangalore-based biotechnology firm. The acquisition marks Strides' entry into biologics, strengthening the company's offering in the speciality segment.
The acquisition will give Strides immediate access to a portfolio of eight products estimated to have global sales of over $8 billion. Commercialisation of these products is expected to begin in 2013.