1. RBI Raises policy rate by 0.25%
i. RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan on Friday surprised the industry and shocked the stock markets by hiking the short-term policy rate by 0.25 percent to keep worrisome inflation under check, a move that may increase EMIs for home and auto loans in the medium term.
ii. Contrary to the expectations of the industry and experts, Rajan in his maiden policy opted for a hawkish monetary policy stance ahead of the festive season instead of shifting the focus to promotion of growth by lowering interest rates to generate demand.
iii. The RBI Governor, however, eased liquidity through a reduction in the marginal standing facility rate, at which banks borrow from the central bank, by 0.75 percent to 9.5 percent and eased the minimum daily maintenance of the cash reserve ratio (CRR).
iv. The repo rate, or the short-term lending rate, has been increased by 25 basis points to 7.5 percent from 7.25 percent with immediate effect. Other policy rates will be adjusted accordingly.
v. "The increase in repo rate could have been avoided as industry is already reeling under pressures of high cost of capital and low availability in a tight liquidity situation...the increase in repo rate come as a surprise," CII Director General Chandrajit Banerjee said.
vi. Rajan left the CRR, or the portion of deposits that banks need to keep with the RBI in cash, unchanged at 4 percent.
vii. At the same time, the RBI reduced the minimum daily maintenance of CRR from 99 percent of the requirement to 95 percent, effective from 21st September, a move aimed at inducing liquidity into the system.
viii. Wholesale price inflation rose to a six-month high of 6.1 percent in August, driven by costlier food items.
ix. Also, steps have been taken to improve the environment for external financing, turning the focus to internal determinants of the value of the rupee, primarily the fiscal deficit and domestic inflation, he added.
x. Next monetary policy review on 29th October 2013.
Current Rates are as Follows:
1. Repo Rate – 7.50%
2. Reverse Repo Rate – 6.50%
3. CRR – 4%
4. MSF – 9.50%
5. Bank Rate - 9.50%
6. SLR – 23%
2. Govt approves 10% DA hike, to benefit 80 lakh employees, pensioners
i. The Central Government employees (both in service and retired) have cause for cheer.
ii. The Government has announced an additional instalment of dearness allowance (DA) and dearness relief (DR).
iii. The Cabinet approved a 10 per cent additional instalment of DA to Central Government employees and DR to pensioners with effect from July 1. This will benefit around 50 lakh serving employees and 30 lakh retired employees.
iv. The latest hike will raise the effective rate of DA and DR to 90 per cent and require additional expenditure of Rs 7,253 crore in 2013-14 and Rs 10,879 crore 2014-15 onward.
v. DA and dearness relief are revised twice a year, first in January 1 and second from July 1. The revisions are based on the change in the consumer price index for industrial workers (CPI-IW).
3. Banks free to open branches in Tier-1 cities: RBI
i. Banks have been given conditional freedom to open branches in tier-I cities without seeking the Reserve Bank of India’s prior approval in each case.
ii. The RBI, however, linked the measure to the number of branches a bank would open in an un-banked or under-banked centre.
iii. The central bank has clarified that the number of branches opened in tier-I centres cannot exceed the total number of branches opened in centres that do not have any at present.
iv. If a bank is unable to open all the tier-I branches it is eligible to in a particular year, then it can open these branches in the subsequent year, the central bank added.
v. As per the earlier guidelines, all scheduled commercial banks were allowed to open branches in Tier-II to Tier-VI centreswithout taking RBI’s permission in each case.
4. Telecom mergers and acquisition policy likely by Oct 15
i. The long-awaited merger and acquisition policy for telecom companies is expected to be in place by October 15, Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal said today.
ii. Telecom operators have been waiting for long to see the final guidelines of merger and acquisition (M&A).
iii. Talking about his immediate priorities at Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, Sibal said that his top priority is getting Post Banks started in rural area.
iv. The Department of Posts has applied for banking licence. The approval of banking licence for DoP by Reserve bank of India is expected to about triple bank branches in the country.
v. For the financial year 2013-14, government expects revenue of Rs 40,847.05 crore from other communication services, which include receipt from spectrum sale and one-time spectrum fee levied on old players for holding airwaves frequencies in addition to quantum they were allocated with licences.
5. Former BCCI secretary Lele passes away
i. Former secretary of the Indian Cricket Board, Jaywant Yeshwant Lele passed away at his residence in Vadodara following a massive heart attack.
ii. Lele breathed his last late Thursday night. He was 75 and is survived by his wife, a son and a daughter.
iii. A qualified umpire and a club level cricketer, Lele later graduated to BCCI ranks and then rose to become its secretary during one of the most turbulent period in Indian cricket.
iv. It was during Lele's tenure as the BCCI secretary that the match-fixing scandal broke out in 2000, which led to the life ban imposed by the Board on former captain Mohammad Azharuddin and Ajay Sharma and five-year bans on Ajay Jadeja and Manoj Prabhakar.
6. Mohammedan Sporting create history, win Durand Cup after 73 years
i. Kolkata giants Mohammedan Sporting today created history by winning the prestigious Durand Cup Football tournament after a gap of 73 years, defeating ONGC 2-1 in the final in New Delhi.
ii. The century old Kolkata outfit was losing its significance in the context of Indian club football and this victory will mean a lot for its thousands of fans spread across the length and breadth of the country.
iii. Sporting coach Abdul Aziz had to field Tolgay as his best player Penn Orji was injured and the Aussie striker proved why he is so highly rated in Indian club circuit.
iv. The last time Mohd Sporting won Durand Cup was before Independence in 1940 by defeating Warwickshire Regiment.
7. Indian men earn maiden berth in wrestling World Cup
i. Indian men earned a maiden World Cup berth on the back of its best-ever sixth-place finish in men’s free-style at the World Championships in Budapest on Friday.
ii. India finished the tournament in the men’s freestyle category with 23 points, which catapulted the country to sixth in rankings behind Iran, Russia, Georgia, Ukraine and USA.
iii. As per the FILA rules, the top eight teams in the World Championship automatically qualify for the World Cup and Amit Kumar Dahiya’s silver medal in the 55-kg and Bajrang’s bronze in the 60-kg freestyle category ensured India its maiden World Cup appearance next year.
iv. The freestyle wrestlers produced India’s best-ever show at the World Championship in a span of two days.
v. The news of India’s World Cup qualification is music to the ears for two-time Olympic medallist Sushil Kumar and Yogeshwar Dutt.
Note: Indian women wrestlers had qualified for the World Cup for the first time this year where they finished fifth in the eight-team event held in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia from March 1to 3.
8. Hamilton tops first Singapore GP practice
i. Lewis Hamilton topped the timesheets as his Mercedes team and Red Bull ruled Friday’s first free practice session for the Singapore Formula One Grand Prix.
ii. Vettel commands the standings with 222 points from 12 of 19 races in his bid for a fourth straight world title.
iii. Vettel and Alonso have two wins each in Singapore, and Hamilton one. Germany’s Vettel is coming off two straight wins for a season-leading tally of six top spots.
9. TV Narendran appointed new Tata Steel MD for India, South East Asia
i. Narendran will succeed incumbent H M Nerurkar, who is retiring on October 31 upon attaining the age of superannuation.
ii. The appointment of Narendran, who is in his late 40s, has surprised many as current group CFO Koushik Chatterjee's name was doing the rounds for the top post.
iii. "On reaching superannuation on October 31, 2013, HM Nerurkar, MD Tata Steel India and South East Asia will step down from the Board of Tata Steel and will be succeeded by T V Narendran with effect from November 1, 2013," the company said in a statement.
iv. Accordingly, Narendran, Chatterjee and Karl Koehler, who heads Tata Steel Europe, will report to Chairman Cyrus Mistry and the Board from November 1.
10. Gurgaon's Rapid Metro likely to be inaugurated on 2nd October
i. Rapid Metro would be the country's first metro rail system developed in the public-private partnership mode, at a cost of about Rs 1,100 crore.
ii. The first phase of the Rapid Metro covers 5.1 km long track, with six stations: DLF phase-II, Belvedere Towers, Gateway Towers, Moulsari Avenue, DLF Phase-III and Sikanderpur. A major part of the line is single-track.
iii. The interchange station is at Sikanderpur, where Rapid Metro connects with Delhi Metro via a skywalk. This will provide seamless connectivity to Delhi Metro, thereby connecting DLF cyber city to Delhi.
iv. Rapid Metro will have common ticketing system with Delhi Metro, which means that the tokens and smart cards of Delhi Metro will work on the Rapid Metro system also.