26 December 2023 : Important Financial News in India


Source: Economic Times, “Today’s ePaper”

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Table of Contents

Resilient Economy Seen Expanding 6.7% in FY24 

The Indian economy is expected to grow by 6.7% in the financial year 2024. This growth is primarily driven by strong domestic demand and increasing investments. Despite challenges from the global environment, the Indian economy remains strong, showing its resilience.

Sports Brands See Sales Gallop in Last 2 Years 

During the pandemic and afterwards, there has been a significant increase in the sales of sports brands. Products such as running shoes, joggers, dumbbells, and yoga mats from about half a dozen leading sports brands have experienced a surge in demand. This trend highlights a growing interest in fitness and wellness during and after the pandemic.

India Seeks Four for Each Extra Seat Allowed to Dubai Airlines 

In a negotiation regarding flight operations, India has proposed that for every additional seat allowed to Dubai-based airlines in their operations to India, Indian carriers should receive four seats. This arrangement, if agreed upon, could enhance the flight capacity of Indian airlines significantly.

Tech & Taxes: I-T Lens on Mismatch in TDS and Claims 

The Income Tax Department in India is scrutinizing mismatches between the tax deducted at source (TDS) by employers and the tax claims made by employees. Discrepancies in these figures could lead to legal scrutiny for both parties. This move aims to ensure tax compliance and accurate reporting.

Centre Considers Extending FAME II Scheme to FY25 

The Indian government is contemplating extending its FAME II scheme, which incentivizes electric vehicle (EV) manufacturing, into the next financial year. The plan may include allocating more funds in the interim budget to enlarge the scheme’s scope, promoting the growth of the EV industry.

Honey, I’m Home! Cos Want Staff Out of Office 

Many companies are encouraging their employees to take time off during the holiday season to spend time with family and friends. Those who work during this period will receive compensatory leave. This initiative reflects a growing trend towards acknowledging the importance of work-life balance and employee well-being.

Adani Green in Pact with SECI to Supply 1,799 MW Power 

Adani Green Energy Ltd has agreed to supply 1,799 megawatts (MW) of solar power to the Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI). This agreement, announced in a stock exchange filing, marks a significant step in India’s renewable energy sector, potentially boosting solar power availability and contributing to the country’s green energy targets.

Taxpayers May be Allowed To File Revised GST Returns from Apr ’25 

Starting April 2025, the Indian government might permit taxpayers to file updated or revised returns under the Goods and Services Tax (GST) system. This change is expected to benefit taxpayers by allowing corrections in their returns, thereby potentially reducing disputes and legal issues related to GST filings.

Subsidy Burden on States Rising 

State governments in India are facing a growing financial burden due to subsidies. Over the past six years, the amount spent on subsidies has increased more rapidly than the states’ own tax revenues. By the financial year 2023-24, it’s expected that states will spend about one-fifth of their tax income on various subsidies. This trend has significant implications for state finances and could affect budget allocations for other sectors.

IOC, BPCL, HPCL in Talks to Raise ₹5,500cr by Securitising Licence Fee 

Indian Oil Corporation (IOC), Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd (BPCL), and Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL) are in discussions to raise ₹5,500 crore. This fund-raising plan involves securitizing the license fee received from petrol pump dealers. It’s part of the Indian government’s broader strategy to monetize assets of state-owned enterprises. This approach indicates a shift towards innovative financing methods in the public sector.

Asian Stocks Gain in Quiet Holiday Trading 

Asian stock markets experienced gains, influenced by positive trends in Wall Street. This upward movement was driven by reports indicating a decline in inflation and potential economic growth. Such trends in Asian markets during a typically quiet holiday trading period suggest increasing investor confidence and a positive economic outlook in the region.

Fundraise by Co Rated ‘D’ a Sign of Junk Bond Market Breaking Free 

In a significant development for India’s debt market, companies previously defaulting on repayments have managed to attract investors and raise funds. This demonstrates the maturing of India’s junk bond market, where investors are willing to take risks on companies with lower credit ratings, hoping for future turnarounds.

IL&FS to Sell Stakes in Three Road Assets as InvIT Plan Fails 

Infrastructure Leasing & Financial Services (IL&FS), facing financial difficulties, plans to sell its stakes in three road projects. This move comes after the failure to transfer these assets to an infrastructure investment trust (InvIT), highlighting challenges in asset restructuring for distressed firms.

CreditAccess Gets it Right with More Borrowers, Stable Assets 

CreditAccess Grameen, a prominent microfinance lender in India, has seen a notable stock increase, outperforming the broader non-banking financial companies (NBFC) index. This growth is attributed to an increase in borrowers and maintaining stable assets, signaling robust business performance and investor confidence in the company.

Bank of Russia Governor says Bracing for More Sanctions 

The Bank of Russia’s Governor, Elvira Nabiullina, anticipates further economic sanctions. This preparation follows the initial impact of sanctions due to Russia’s involvement in Ukraine, indicating ongoing challenges for the Russian economy in the face of international pressures.

Two Wars, 50 Elections: The Economy Faces Rising Geopolitical Risks 

Global economic stability faces threats from increasing geopolitical tensions, exemplified by conflicts affecting crucial shipping routes in the Red Sea and the Israeli-Hamas war. These conflicts, coupled with numerous elections worldwide, contribute to a volatile global economic environment.

Early Stage Products Anupam Rasayan’s Growth Molecule 

Anupam Rasayan, a specialty chemicals company, has shown remarkable stock performance, significantly outpacing the broader chemicals index. This growth is driven by strong fiscal prospects and efforts to reduce debt, marking the company as a standout performer in its sector.

Relief for Huawei in I-T Case: Local Court Sets Aside Summons to Co

A local court has dismissed orders by a magistrate against the Indian unit of Huawei and its top executives. They were previously summoned for prosecution by the Income Tax Department. This decision provides significant relief to Huawei, suggesting possible easing of legal challenges for the company in India.

China to Provide Consular Assistance to Vivo Employees Arrested in India 

China has pledged consular support to two Chinese employees of Vivo, arrested in India. The Chinese government urges India to treat Chinese companies fairly, highlighting the diplomatic tensions that can arise from legal actions against employees of international firms.

Chinese Smartphone Makers in the Eye of Multiple Storms 

Chinese smartphone manufacturers are facing challenges globally, including declining market share. This has led to a reduction in their exports from India, illustrating the difficulties these companies face in maintaining their global presence amid competitive and geopolitical pressures.

Wipro Files Complaint Against Ex-US Staffer Who Joined Cognizant 

Wipro, an Indian IT giant, has filed a legal complaint against a former senior executive for breaching a non-compete agreement by joining its competitor, Cognizant. This case underscores the importance of non-compete clauses in employment contracts and the potential conflicts they can create in the competitive IT industry.

Railways to Launch Amrit Bharat Soon 

The Indian Railways plans to introduce a new train service called Amrit Bharat. These non-air-conditioned trains promise to be faster and more comfortable than current offerings, reflecting the Railways’ commitment to enhancing passenger experience.

This NYU Student Owns a $6 M Crypto Mine 

Jerry Yu, an NYU student, owns a significant bitcoin mining operation in Texas, valued at over $6 million. His story exemplifies the emerging trend of young entrepreneurs investing in the lucrative but volatile cryptocurrency market.

Do You Really Need That Antibiotic? 

The use of antibiotics, while often crucial for treating infections, is being scrutinized for overuse. Misuse can lead to antibiotic resistance, posing a significant public health concern. This highlights the importance of appropriate antibiotic use.

Enjoying Fully Staged Opera at Home Becomes Easier 

Access to fully staged opera performances at home has become more convenient through Amazon Prime Video. This development marks a significant shift in how audiences can experience high-quality cultural productions, catering to the growing demand for home entertainment options.

Top Guns Plug into Future with Licence to Upskill 

India’s corporate leaders are embracing online education to prepare for transformative challenges in the evolving work landscape. This trend signifies a shift towards continuous professional development at the highest levels of management, acknowledging the need for new skills to navigate the changing business world.

Swedish Medtech Co Elekta Sees Smaller Cities Driving Growth 

Elekta, a Swedish medical technology firm, sees potential growth in India’s smaller cities. Their focus is on expanding the availability of cancer treatment equipment, indicating a move towards decentralizing advanced healthcare and making it accessible in less urbanized areas.

Local Wearable & Hearable Makers Ringing Up Sales 

Indian brands in the wearable and hearable technology market have seen significant sales growth, indicating a strong consumer preference for local products. This surge reflects the increasing market penetration of Indian tech companies in a globally competitive sector.

TDRs: A Tool for Planned Urban Growth 

The redevelopment of Mumbai’s Dharavi highlights the use of Transferable Development Rights (TDRs) for urban planning. TDRs offer a method to manage and incentivize development in dense urban areas, balancing growth with city planning needs.

Medical Devices are Crucial in Healthcare: Union Health Minister 

India’s health minister emphasized the importance of the medical devices sector in healthcare, aligning with India’s vision to transform its health landscape. This approach underscores the role of technology and innovation in advancing healthcare services.

Amagi Media Expects to Turn Profitable Soon 

Amagi Media Labs, a media technology company, anticipates profitability soon, signifying a positive trend in its business growth. This expectation reflects the company’s successful strategies and potential in the competitive media technology landscape.

Experion Developers Planning New Projects with ₹10k-cr Sales Potential 

Experion Developers, a real estate firm, plans to launch projects worth ₹10,000 crore, indicating robust growth and confidence in India’s real estate market. This plan follows significant land acquisitions and reflects optimism in the sector’s future.

Pvt Hospitals in No Hurry to Procure Vax 

Indian private hospitals are cautiously approaching COVID-19 vaccine procurement, awaiting government guidance amid a case surge. This reflects the ongoing challenges and complexities in the vaccination strategy in response to evolving pandemic dynamics.

Hotel Occupancies Surge in Shimla, Manali 

The popular Atal Tunnel has driven a tourism surge in Shimla and Manali, with hotel occupancies reaching high levels. This indicates a boost in regional tourism, showcasing the impact of infrastructure developments on local economies.

Prada Buys Two NY Buildings Worth $835m in Expansion Push 

Luxury brand Prada has acquired two significant properties in New York for $835 million, marking a major expansion effort. This investment demonstrates Prada’s commitment to strengthening its presence in a key global retail market.

Meet the Execs Who Donned the Founders’ Hat This Year 

Despite a challenging economic environment with tight liquidity and a slump in investments, numerous senior executives have boldly transitioned from secure, high-paying jobs to entrepreneurship in 2023. This trend indicates a strong entrepreneurial spirit and confidence in the startup ecosystem, even in tough economic times.

New Ride-hailing Apps Racing Uber, Ola for Mobility Biz 

The Indian ride-hailing market is witnessing a surge in new entrants challenging established players like Uber and Ola. These newcomers, offering services in cabs, autorickshaws, and bike taxis, have become a significant topic in the strategic discussions of existing companies, reflecting a dynamic and evolving mobility sector.

Slice Names Kalra North East SFB CEO 

Satish Kumar Kalra, a former executive at Andhra Bank, has been appointed the new MD and CEO of North East Small Finance Bank, with the Reserve Bank of India’s approval. This move signifies a strategic leadership change, potentially influencing the bank’s future direction and growth.

Noise Valued at $420m Post $10m Bose Funding 

Noise, an Indian wearables brand, has secured $10 million from Bose Corporation, leading to a valuation of around $420 million. This investment highlights the growing interest in India’s consumer electronics sector and Noise’s promising position in the market.

Govt Launches Scheme to Boost Medtech Cos 

The Indian government has initiated the MedTech Mitra platform to support domestic medical technology innovators and reduce reliance on imported medical devices. This scheme represents a strategic effort to strengthen the local MedTech industry and enhance self-reliance in healthcare technology.

InCred Turns Unicorn with $60m in Series D 

InCred Finance has achieved a valuation of approximately $1.04 billion, entering the unicorn club, after raising $60 million in its series-D funding. This milestone underscores the company’s success and the robust growth potential in the non-banking financial sector.

Microsoft-backed Rubrik is Eyeing Acquisitions to Expand its India Biz 

Rubrik Inc, a cloud data management and security company backed by Microsoft, is planning acquisitions to grow its business in India. Capitalizing on the country’s digital and data expansion and the increasing threat of cyberattacks, Rubrik’s strategy signifies an aggressive growth approach in a critical market.

Apple Watch Models Vanish from US Stores 

Apple has suspended sales of its Watch Series 9 and Ultra 2 in US retail stores due to an import ban by the US International Trade Commission over a patent dispute with Masimo. This situation highlights the impact of intellectual property disputes on product availability and corporate strategies.

Artists Use Tech Against AI Copycats 

Artists facing challenges from AI that replicates their styles are fighting back using technology. They are adopting Glaze, a free software developed by the University of Chicago, to protect their work. This response showcases the growing concern over AI’s impact on creative rights and the pursuit of innovative solutions to safeguard artistic originality.

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