Citizens' Issues
RBI issues another warning on scam e-mails

The central bank itself has been the target of the scamsters who have used its name in a fake e-mail, asking people for numerous personal details to register for a one-time password. The best way to deal with such mails is to delete it ASAP

Reserve Bank of India (RBI), while issuing another warning about scam e-mails and SMS that are doing round, has asked people to stay away from such messages.

In a statement, the central bank advised people to immediately register a complaint with the local police/cyber crime authorities when they receive fictitious offers of money from abroad or if they are victims of such offers. “It has also placed, on its (RBI) website, the list of such nodal agencies with whom the public can register complaints,” the central bank said.

E-mails claiming you have won a lottery prize worth millions of dollars or fraudulent e-mails in the name of your banker, seeking account details for verification are not new. Time and again people are lured to such messages and have lost their money.

Now acting on it, the RBI once again, issued a warning asking people to stay away from such e-mails.

In fact, the central bank itself has been the target of the scamsters who have used its name in a fake e-mail, asking people for numerous personal details to register for a one-time password.  In reality, the apex bank never asks for these details for the purpose of verification, by e-mail.

Often these scam e-mails, ask you to furnish your personal and bank details. Most of them are originally sent from foreign countries, telling you to make some payment to claim the prize money.

However RBI has cautioned “against making any remittance towards participation in such schemes/offers from unknown entities since such remittances are illegal and any resident in India collecting and effecting/remitting such payments directly/indirectly outside India is liable to be proceeded against for contravention of the Foreign Exchange Management Act, 1999. They are also liable for violation of regulations relating to Know Your Customer (KYC) norms/Anti Money Laundering (AML) standards.”

Another e-mail was circulated where unclaimed funds were offered in the name of RBI. To make this email more realistic, they had even used RBI governor D Subbarao's name and mentioned a so-called meeting with a "Senate Tax Committee on Finance", except that there is no such committee in India.

The central bank in the past have issued similar advisory to the people against falling prey to fictitious offers/lottery winnings/remittance of cheap funds in foreign currency from abroad by so-called foreign entities/ individuals or to Indian residents acting as representatives of such entities/individuals.

Best way is to delete any email that asks your personal and bank details. However, in case you have free time on your hand then read an interesting book “Delete This At Your Peril” by Bob Servant / Neil Forsyth. This book hilariously shows internet scam artists are just as gullible as their victims if not more so. The idea in one of these scams is to get the recipient to wire the sender money. Here, it is the email recipient who gets the senders to promise to send alligators, leopards, and a talking lion (no, really) as his part of a 419 scam. (Read Lions, Gold and Confusion, an extract from the book)

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Inflation to drop to 6.5% this month: Credit Suisse

Credit Suisse envisages the wholesale price index (WPI) inflation to drop to 6.5% by January 2012, below the estimate floated by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), and is likely to remain there until the April-June quarter 2012

India’s overall inflation rate, which has remained near the double-digit mark since December 2010, is likely to fall sharply to 6.5% this month and stay ‘low’ until 2013, reports PTI.

Contrary to many forecasters, global financial services major Credit Suisse envisages wholesale price index (WPI) inflation to drop to 6.5% by January 2012, below the estimate floated by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), and is likely to remain there until the April-June quarter 2012.

After the second quarter of this calendar year, WPI is likely to fall to below 6%. Contrary to the view of many forecasters, we expect WPI inflation to remain below 6% until 2013, the report by Credit Suisse said.

Even though food inflation has turned negative, overall inflation, which also factors in manufactured products, fuel and non-food primary items, have remained near double digits since December 2010.

As per official data, food products witnessed 3.36% deflation during the week ended 24 December 2011. The headline inflation numbers for December 2011 will be available next week. The rate of price rise stood at 9.11% in November 2011.

The RBI, which is scheduled to come out with its third quarterly monetary policy review on 24 January 2012, has already hiked interest rates 13 times since March 2010 to tame inflation. Credit Suisse, however, believes the central bank is likely to cut rates only in March 2012.

“Coupled with a sustained period of sub-7% growth, the RBI is likely to cut rates from March 2012. We look for at least 125 bps of repo rate reductions in 2012-13,” the report said.

The report noted that speculation on the impact the depreciating rupee will have on inflation is highly overdone, as commodity prices are falling.

The Indian rupee has depreciated by 15% against the US dollar since the end of July, while the Korean won, the second weakest Asian currency, fell by 9% during the same period and China’s renminbi appreciated by 1%.

What really matters to Indian WPI inflation is the percentage year-on-year change in rupee-denominated international commodity prices, which is falling, the report said and noted that the risks to the headline WPI rate are on the downside.

With economic activity expected to continue to disappoint for a while longer, the RBI is expected to lower the Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR) in March, with the first repo rate reduction coming in April, Credit Suisse said.

“If anything, the risk is that the action starts sooner rather than later, while it may be that our current call of 125 bps in rate cuts during the 2012-13 fiscal year as a whole is also a touch on the conservative side,” Credit Suisse said.

After robust 8.5% growth last fiscal, India’s GDP growth rate slipped to 6.9% in the second quarter this fiscal, while the index of industrial production contracted by 5.1% in October 2011.

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COMMENTS

Dinipc

5 years ago

One wonders if the inflation game is just about the inflation number! If inflation has been steadily falling since the past 1 month, why don't we see it reflected in prices of various food articles?

Bankers seek a cut in CRR

Given the present stress on liquidity—which has seen banks draw over Rs1,00,000 crore from the repo window daily—there is a growing clamour for the RBI to cut the CRR

Mumbai: Citing bleak macroeconomic condition, bankers have sought a cut in the percentage of deposits they keep with the central bank, or CRR (cash reserve ratio), as well as in the policy rates from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in the forthcoming third quarter monetary policy announcement, reports PTI.

“We have pointed out to the governor the slowing growth indicators as well the inflation index. We have also told him that if growth were to be taken as a priority, then it calls for a reduction in the CRR as well as policy rates,” bankers’ umbrella body Indian Banks Association (IBA) chief executive K Ramakrishnan told PTI here after the customary pre-policy interaction with the RBI mandarins.

The RBI is scheduled to come out with its third quarterly monetary policy review on 24th January.

Mr Ramakrishnan said there has been growing concern over liquidity in the past few months, while the RBI’s 13 rate hikes in a row till October have affected credit growth.

After a robust 8.5% growth last fiscal, gross domestic product (GDP) growth has slipped to 6.9% in the second quarter this fiscal, while the October IIP (Index of Industrial Production) contracted by 5.1%.

Inflation, after hovering over 9% throughout the year, is expected to come down as food price index, after six long years, fell into the negative territory at -3.36% for the week ended 24th December.

Food inflation has about 17% weightage in the core inflation.

Core inflation for November stood at 9.11% and the December numbers are expected later this week.

Mr Ramakrishnan said the bankers also requested the RBI to pay them interest on the CRR deposits, but RBI has refused to heed to this demand citing technical difficulties. Till the last amendment, which deleted the CRR interest clause by mistake, banks used to get nominal interest on the CRR.

Meanwhile, leading bankers, who met RBI deputy governor Subir Gokarn were evasive when asked about the specific requests put forth by them.

“I would not be able to tell you exactly what are all the things which we discussed inside... we have given a good view of what we have seen in the market,” Bank of Baroda chairman and managing director MD Mallya, who also heads the IBA, told reporters after the meeting.

Mortgage major HDFC’s chief executive Keki Mistry had on Monday said he expects a CRR cut in the policy.

Stepping out of the RBI headquarters, the country’s second largest lender ICICI Bank’s managing director and chief executive Chanda Kochhar said bankers discussed state of economy, liquidity conditions, asset quality and economic growth, but refused to share the specifics.

Mr Mallya said as of now, credit growth has been around 17% year-on-year, falling below 18% for the first time.

“At the moment we still look at 18% for the full year. It certainly depends on how exactly the subsequent two months will go out,” he said.

He added that asset quality is an important aspect that banks need to look out for in the present scenario and referred to textile and steel as the sectors from where stress is emanating.

With a focus on bringing down inflation, the RBI has increased its key rates a record 13 times till the October policy review. However, at the 16th December mid-quarter policy review, the apex bank chose to pause the rate hike and also hinted at a policy reversal as growth was getting hit.

In the backdrop of this, all eyes are now resting on the action RBI chooses to take in its review.

Given the present stress on liquidity—which has seen banks draw over Rs1,00,000 crore from the repo window daily—there is a growing clamour for the Mint Road to cut the CRR.

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