'NPS likely to manage Rs20,000 crore assets by 2012-end'

Only 13% of the workforce, mainly employees of the government and organised private sector, are covered by a pension scheme.

“AUM (Assets Under Management) of the NPS are likely to move up from Rs14,000 crore now to Rs20,000 crore by the year-end,” NPS Trust managing trustee and chief executive officer N R Rayalu said.

The NPS trust was set up in 2008 by the Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) for taking care of the assets and funds under the NPS in the interest of the subscribers.

NPS is a crucial component of reforms in the Indian pension fund market whose valuation is estimated at Rs13.72 trillion, he said at an Assocham event. He said pension funds can contribute immensely for development of infrastructure as the country plans to spend Rs50 trillion during the 12th Five Year Plan (2012-17).
“Infrastructure projects are starved of long-term funds. Pension funds can be the biggest contributor for development of social and physical infrastructure,” Rayalu said.

He called for spreading financial education to cover unorganised sector under the social security net after retirement. Only 13% of the workforce, mainly employees of the government and organised private sector - are covered by a pension scheme.

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UTI Mutual Fund declares 3.5% dividend

The dividend after tax deductions will be 2.64% and the record date for the payout is 22 March 2012 the fund house said in a statement.

UTI Mutual Fund declared a gross dividend of 3.5% for its Charitable and Religious Trusts and Registered Societies Scheme.

The dividend after tax deductions will be 2.64% and the record date for the payout is 22 March 2012 the fund house said in a statement.

As on 16 March 2012, the net asset value per unit of scheme is Rs129.03 under the dividend options.

The objective of the scheme, an open-ended income oriented plan, is primarily to provide regular income to its investors by investing not more than 30% of the funds in equities and balance in debt and money market instruments, the statement said.

As of 31 December 2011, UTI MF managed average assets of Rs57,817.34 crore.

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Banks should open 25% branches in unbanked areas: RBI

The RBI has also agreed to take forward financial inclusion programme more meaningfully in Jammu and Kashmir

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has asked banks to comply with the prescription of opening at least 25% of new branches in a year in unbanked areas with a population less than 10,000.

“At RBI, we have said at least 25% of all the branches opened in a given year should be opened in unbanked areas with population of less than 10,000,” RBI governor D Subbarao told a state-level conference of bankers.

“I hope that prescription would be complied with (by all the banks). It should be done in consultation with state government,” the governor further said while referring to financial inclusion and awareness drive.

Giving further direction to bankers, Subbarao said that it has agreed to take forward financial inclusion programme more meaningfully in Jammu and Kashmir.
“In this model of financial programme, we have agreed to train business correspondents for the programme,” he said.

“We have open physical branches--certainly 25% among new branches,” he added.

Having conducted an outreach programme at Surara village in Samba district of Jammu and Kashmir as part of its financial inclusion and awareness drive, RBI had yesterday said that 70,000 villages in the country have been identified for access to banking under financial inclusion programme.

“So, since it is not possible or expensive to open branch in all 70,000 villages. We are covering some of them to banking corresponding model and some through other models”, he said.

“This is collective effort of central government, banks to provide banking facilities to low income house hold groups in the country,” he said.

The governor touched upon the important functions of RBI viz issuing and managing currency, controlling inflation through formulation of monetary policy, expanding outreach and banking awareness, deposit insurance scheme. He also highlighted the facilities of 'no frills account', general credit card, kisan credit cards and overdraft facilities against these accounts.

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