Twitter passed 10 billion tweets, but nobody twitted

When Apple’s online store sold its 10 billionth download, the lucky customer got a $10,000 Apple gift card and a personal phone call from Steve Jobs. But Twitter’s 10 billionth tweet has largely gone unnoticed.

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Steel ministry to send SAIL's FPO proposal to Cabinet this week

SAIL's share sale is proposed to take place through a two-phased FPO, which will see the government selling 10% of its equity in the company and the steel giant raising fresh equity in the same proportion

The steel ministry on Tuesday said that it will send the 20% share-sale proposal of the country's largest steel maker Steel Authority of India Ltd (SAIL) to the Union Cabinet this week, reports PTI.

"The share-sale proposal of SAIL will be sent to the Cabinet this week. Thereafter, the Cabinet secretary will take a final call on it," steel secretary Atul Chaturvedi told reporters on the sidelines of a conference to announce the price band of NMDC Ltd's follow-on public offer (FPO).

SAIL's share sale is proposed to take place through a two-phased FPO, which will see the government selling 10% of its equity in the company and the company raising fresh equity in the same proportion.

"The first phase is expected to happen in 2010-11 and the next in 2011-12, but both would be based on the market conditions," Mr Chaturvedi added.

The government holds a little over 85% equity in SAIL.

The Union government plans to raise the money to part fund its massive social and infrastructure programmes while the steel maker would partly finance its Rs70,000-crore expansion plan through the share-sale proceeds.

"(The) share sale is expected to fetch Rs8,000 crore in each phase collectively to the government and the company. Thus, the total proceeds of the FPO could be around Rs16,000 crore," he said.

The final amount would, however, depend on the price the government fixes for the FPO. Share sale in Satluj Jal Vidyut Nigam, earlier scheduled for the current fiscal, will now be initiated in the next fiscal.

Besides, the Cabinet has given its nod for further stake sale in Engineers India.

As per the Cabinet decision, all listed profitable public sector units (PSUs) should have a public holding of at least 10% and all profitable unlisted PSUs should be listed over the next few years.

According to these criteria, as many as 60 state-run companies are eligible for disinvestment.

Earlier, revenue secretary Sunil Mitra, former disinvestment secretary, had said that the department expected some of the big PSUs like Coal India, Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) and SAIL to be divested in the next fiscal.


Equity MF net inflows up 54% in February

After a continuous drain of Rs7,315 crore over the past five months, equity schemes are back in the limelight

Happy days are here again for equity mutual fund (MF) schemes which saw Rs1,514 crore of net inflows in February after an outflow of Rs7,315 crore between August 2009-December 2009. During February, equity inflows jumped 54% from the Rs980 crore recorded in January.

“Markets are doing well and people believe that they will continue to do well going further. It could also be because of tax-saving schemes (ELSS) which are popular in February-March,” said Vivek Rege, chartered financial analyst (CFA) and managing director of VR Wealth Advisors Pvt Ltd.

Net inflows in equity MFs started vanishing and moved into positive territory post December which saw Rs2,185 crore of net outflows. In February, redemptions of all schemes stood at Rs7,52,798 crore.

During the same month, sales of all schemes fell 14% to Rs7,59,163 crore compared to Rs8,84,738 crore a month ago.

January saw the launch of three new open-ended equity funds like Axis Equity Fund, Fidelity India Value Fund and Sundaram BNP Paribas Select Thematic Funds—PSU Opportunities, while there were no new equity schemes launched in February. The Bombay Stock Exchange’s 30-share index, the Sensex, remained flat at 16,429 points in February from 16,357 at end-January.

Assets under management (AUM) of Equity Linked Savings Schemes (ELSS) are up by 1% at Rs22,664 crore compared to last month. ELSS schemes recorded a 25% hike in net inflows at Rs335 crore from Rs268 crore in January.


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