Top 10 biz headlines: FM exhorts India Inc, PNB registers loss and more

Nirmala Sitharaman
Ball is now in your court: FM Sitharaman exhorts India Inc to invest more

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Tuesday exhorted India Inc to shed its hesitation and make investments to push up economic growth, saying the government had taken several pro-business measures such as reduction in corporation tax rates, removing minimum alternate tax in the new tax structure, and scrapping dividend distribution tax (DDT) levied on companies. Read More

Cabinet likely to approve mergers of 10 public sector banks into 4 today

The Centre might approve the scheme for amalgamation of 10 public sector banks (PSBs) into four on Wednesday, an official source said. The Union Cabinet, led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, is scheduled to meet on Wednesday and is expected to approve the amalgamation of the PSBs. According to the scheme, which has been put up for the Cabinet’s approval, the merger of the balance sheets will be completed by April 1. Read More

Paytm is clearly ahead of Google Pay and PhonePe: Vijay Shekhar Sharma

Infosys co-founder and Aadhaar architect Nandan Nilekani says Paytm founder and Chief Executive Vijay Shekhar Sharma is “democratising digital payments in the country and nobody has done a better job than him.” Nilekani also threw a challenge to Sharma to build Aadhaar-enabled payments system and allow Paytm to work on feature phones. Read More

AirAsia CEO Tony Fernandes, chairman quit over Airbus bribery scandal

Two AirAsia chiefs will step aside for at least two months as authorities and the airline look into claims that aerospace giant Airbus paid the company USD 50 million to secure a plane order. Airbus said last week it had agreed to set aside up to 3.6 billion euros to settle a corruption probe by authorities in France, Britain and the United States. Read More

Budget impact: High share of FDs in investment can hit your wealth creation

The long-awaited hike in insurance cover for bank fixed deposits (FDs) was finally announced by the finance minister in the Union Budget. From Rs 1 lakh earlier, it has now gone up to Rs 5 lakh per depositor. This hike alone should not, however, motivate investors to put more money in FDs, as poor post-tax returns, especially for those in the higher tax brackets, could affect their ability to build wealth over the long term. Read More

Punjab National Bank logs loss of Rs 492 cr in Q3, asset quality improves

State lender Punjab National Bank Tuesday reported a standlone net loss of Rs 492 crore in the December quarter of FY20 (Q3FY20) on account of higher provisions during the recently concluded quarter. However, the bank's asset quality improved on, both, yearly and sequential basis. The bank's gross non-performing assets (GNPA) came in at Rs 76,809.20 crore for Q3FY20, down from Rs 77,733.33 crore reported in the same quarter last year. Read More

New taxation rules to hit dividends received from foreign subsidiaries

The rewriting of dividend taxation rules may have an impact on dividends received from the foreign subsidiaries of domestic companies. Easier rules of taxation applicable earlier have changed, potentially leading to double taxation on the amount received from foreign subsidiaries and distributed by their parent companies to shareholders, according to experts. Read More

Indo-US trade deal likely to be sealed during Donald Trump's India visit

India and the US are set to seal a trade deal during President Donald Trump's planned visit to India in the last week of this month, multiple sources said on Tuesday. Trade officials of Indian and the US are giving final touches to the proposed deal which is expected to cover certain specific sectors, they said. Read More

Govt arms itself with powers to ban import or export of any item

The government has proposed to amend the Customs Act to give it wide powers to ban imports and exports of goods that may hurt the local economy, clearing the way for it to bar imports of cheap toys and firecrackers from China. So far, the government had powers to only ban imports and exports of gold and silver under the Customs Act, 1962. Once approved, the amendment, through the Finance Bill, will expand the government’s power to ban imports or exports of all goods, reports Live Mint. 

Budget 2020: Rs1-lakh-crore shortfall in tax receipts likely

The Budget has lowered the gross tax revenue (GTR) estimate for FY20 by a massive Rs 3 lakh crore or 12% with sharpest cut of Rs 1.55 lakh crore or 20% in corporate tax estimate, but if the April-December data put out by the Controller General of Accounts recently and trend share of collections in the fourth quarter of a financial year are any guidance, the actual GTR could still fall short of the revised estimate (RE) by around Rs 1 lakh crore. That could result in a decline of at least Rs 50,000 crore in Centre’s net tax receipts, necessitating a corresponding expenditure compression of over 20 bps of GDP to avoid a further slippage from the relaxed fiscal deficit target of 3.8%, reports Financial Express. 

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