RBI to set up committee to look into fixed rate loan products

RBI is planning to set up a committee to look into the issue of facilitating the development of fixed rate loan products in the banking system

Mumbai: The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) is planning to set up a committee to look into the issue of facilitating the development of fixed rate loan products in the banking system, RBI deputy governor, Anand Sinha said, reports PTI.

“We will set up a committee soon to facilitate the development of fixed rate loan products in the market, which are presently absent in the system,” Mr Sinha told reporters on the sidelines of an Assocham event.

Explaining the rationale behind the move, he said it is the question of market development as consumer should get a range of products to make a choice.

In its last credit policy review in April, the central bank had announced to set up a committee to look into the issue.

Referring to the issue of hedging, Mr Sinha said the central bank has asked banks to have a board mandated hedging policy to protect corporate clients from currency fluctuations.

“We know that the corporates take a view on the exchange rate movement based on the currency movement and then decide whether to hedge or not to hedge. Point is that if we are looking for a safer system then we will have to gear up on our hedging in a better way...,” Mr Sinha said.

He also said the central bank doesn't have any fixed level for rupee and will only intervene to check excess volatility.

“RBI doesn't look for a fixed level of rupee. We will only intervene if there is excess volatility,” he said adding that it is closely watching the liquidity situation.

Presently, banks are borrowing around Rs1 lakh crore from the liquid adjustment facility (LAF) route, which is above RBI's comfort level of around Rs60,000 crore.


Sensex, Nifty may be in for a short, quick upmove: Monday Closing Report

Nifty’s resistance is at around 5,370-5400

The market, which saw a flat opening, traded in the positive for the entire session on hopes of a stimulus from the US Fed on the back of weak growth in the world's largest economy in the first three months of 2012. We had mentioned in our Friday's closing report that Monday's move may decide future short-term direction, which may be up. Today the Nifty closed near to its 20-day moving average of 5,254. A higher high may result in the index hitting its first resistance at 5,400. The National Stock Exchange (NSE) saw a volume of the 53.74 crore shares, which was the lowest in the past 11trading days (including today).

The market witnessed a flat opening as FII outflows from the equities segment in the current month weighed investors. The Nifty opened eight points lower at 5,201 while the Sensex added nine points to its previous close to resume trade at 17,176. The opening figures on both benchmarks were their intraday lows.

The indices soon headed higher on institutional buying support and a firm trend in the Asian markets. Inching its way up, the market hit its intraday high at noon. At this point, the Nifty touched 5,262 and the Sensex rose to 17,359.

Demand for IT and technology stocks enabled the benchmarks retain their momentum in the post-noon session on hopes of a new stimulus by the US Federal Reverse on the back of a sagging economy.  

The market settled in the green with the Nifty gaining 39 points at 5,248 and the Sensex closed trade at 17,319, a gain of 131 points.

The Indian market will be closed on Tuesday for the May Day holiday.

The advance-decline ratio on the NSE was 827:610.

Among the broader indices, the BSE Mid-cap index 0.69% and the BSE Small-cap index rose 0.57%.

The top sectoral gainers were BSE IT (up 2.37%); BSE TECk (up 1.93%); BSE Oil & Gas (up 1.05%); BSE Realty (up 1.04%) and BSE Metal (up 0.89%). The losers were BSE Consumer Durables (down 0.66%) and BSE Fast Moving Consumer Goods (down 0.27%).

The Sensex was led by TCS (up 3.49%); Jindal Steel (up 3.41%); Infosys (up 2.75%); DLF (up 2.61%) and Hero MotoCorp (up 2.35%). The main laggards were Maruti Suzuki (down 1.95%); BHEL (down 1.94%); Mahindra & Mahindra (down 0.64%); ITC (down 0.61%) and HDFC (down 0.50%).

The top gainers on the Nifty were TCS (up 4.01%); Jindal Steel (up 3.67%); Power Grid Corporation (up 3.04%); DLF (up 2.83%) and Infosys (up 2.63%). The key losers on the index were BHEL (down 2.31%); Maruti Suzuki (down 1.66%); Axis Bank (down 1.34%); Dr Reddy's (down 1.31%) and Asian Paints (down 1.04%).

Markets in Asia closed mostly in the green as weak US economic data gave rise to speculations that the Federal Reserve might announce some stimulus initiatives in the near future. Meanwhile, South Korea's industrial output fell a seasonally adjusted 3.1% in March from February, hurting prospects for a turnaround in Asia's fourth-largest economy. Volumes across the region were lower as markets in Japan and China remained closed.

The Hang Seng surged 1.70%; the Jakarta Composite gained 0.40%; the KLSE Composite rose 0.18%; the KOSPI Composite climbed 0.34% and the Taiwan Weighted closed 0.28% higher. On the other hand, the Straits Times shed 0.10%. At the time of writing, two of the three key European bourses were trading lower and the US stock futures were in the red.

Back home, foreign institutional investors were net buyers of shares totalling Rs6.17 crore on Saturday while domestic institutional investors were net sellers of equities amounting to Rs10.68 crore.

Future Group today announced the intent to execute a full demerger of Pantaloons retail format from Pantaloon Retail India. The demerger, subject to necessary and statutory approvals, will invite an investment from Aditya Birla Nuvo. The latter will subscribe to debentures amounting to Rs800 crore issued by Pantaloons Retail. Pantaloon Retail jumped 8.36% to close at Rs186 on the NSE.

Alstom T&D India has bagged a contract worth Rs84 crore from Chhattisgarh State Power Transmission Company (CSPTCL) for the erection, testing and commissioning of a 400 kV substation at Jagdalpur in the state of Chhattisgarh. The stock declined 0.91% to close at Rs158.55 on the NSE.

Government-owned trading major MMTC is planning to sign iron ore supply contracts with five Japanese companies and one South Korean company including Posco. The supply contract will be for a period of three years and shipments are expected to start from July this year.

As per the deals, the state-owned unit will supply 3 million tonne (MT) of iron ore per annum to five Japanese companies including Nippon Steel Corporation, JFE Steel Corporation and Nisshin Steel. Besides, MMTC will supply 1 MT of iron ore yearly to South Korean major Posco. The stock climbed 5.68% to close at Rs784 on the NSE.


Life Exclusive
Fast food TV ads linked with obesity: Study

The study revealed that Individuals who are more familiar with television commercials of fast-food restaurants may have food consumption patterns that include many types of high-calorie food brands, or they may be especially sensitive to visual cues to eat while watching TV

Obesity among young people? Blame it on the television commercials of fast-food restaurants. While eating a lot of fast food increases the risk of obesity, a new research shows that even the exposure to television advertising on fast-food restaurants is linked with obesity in young people.

The research was conducted by Paediatric Academic Societies (PAS). According to Auden C McClure, MD, MPH, FAAP and assistant professor in the Department of Paediatrics at Children’s Hospital at Dartmouth, Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, “We know that children and adolescents are highly exposed to fast-food restaurant advertising, particularly on television. This study links obesity in young people to familiarity with this kind of advertising, suggesting that youth who are aware of and receptive to televised fast-food marketing may be at risk for health consequences.”

While earlier research had shown that obesity is associated with watching television, this research was aimed to determine whether recognition of fast-food ads on TV is associated with obesity in adolescents and young adults.

The researchers surveyed 3,342 youths, between the ages of 15 to 23 years. They were asked details such as height, weight, age, gender, race, socioeconomic status, and exercise, along with other questions like their consumption of soda or sweet drinks, frequency of eating at quick-service restaurants, how many hours they watched TV each day, and whether they snacked while watching TV.

The participants were also shown 20 still images, digitally edited to remove the brand, selected from television ads for leading restaurants, serving fast food, that were aired in the year before the survey. They were asked if they remembered seeing, if they liked the ad and if they could name the restaurant brand. They were also shown 20 ads for alcohol.

According to the survey, 18% of the participants were found to be overweight and 15% were obese. It revealed that the percentage of youth who were obese was significantly higher among those who recognized more ads than those who recognized few ads (17% Vs 8.3%). The research also said that even after controlling for the listed variables, youths who recognized many ads were more than twice as likely to be obese compared with those who recognized few ads.

Dr McClure explains that, “A similar association with obesity was not found for familiarity with televised alcohol ads, suggesting that the relationship was specific to fast-food advertising content.”  He adds, “After accounting for overall TV time, TV ad familiarity was still linked with obesity suggesting that this finding is not simply due to increased sedentary time or an effect of TV programming.”

Interestingly, according to the research, eating more frequently at fast-food restaurants depicted in the ads was not associated with obesity. “The relation between fast-food marketing and obesity is not simply that it prompts more quick-serve restaurant visits,” said study co-author James D Sargent, MD, FAAP, professor in the Department of Paediatrics at Children's Hospital at Dartmouth. “Individuals who are more familiar with these ads may have food consumption patterns that include many types of high-calorie food brands, or they may be especially sensitive to visual cues to eat while watching TV. More research is necessary to determine how fast-food ad familiarity is linked to obesity,” he added.


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