Top 10 biz headlines: Govt plans 3 CPSE ETFs, ITC board meeting, and more

Illustration by Ajay Mohanty
Centre plans 3 CPSE ETFs in FY20 to meet Rs 90,000-cr disinvestment target

The Ministry of Finance’s Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (DIPAM) is examining plans to launch three equity exchange-traded funds (ETFs) in the current fiscal year, Business Standard has learnt.

DIPAM expects that the three ETFs will be attractive to investors who want to invest in specific sectors, and will help the Centre meet an ambitious Rs 90,000 crore disinvestment target for 2019-20 (FY20). Read more here 

After staples, discretionary categories feel the pinch of slowdown

Riyaaz Amlani, chief executive officer (CEO) and managing director (MD), Impresario Entertainment & Hospitality, is a worried man. Business at his restaurants has slowed, he says, and growth has been flat in April. “This is the holiday season. Business should have been brisk. But we’re not seeing much action for the last one month,” he says.

Amlani isn’t the only CEO in the discretionary space to be echoing these views. Veterans such as Dilip Piramal, chairman, VIP Industries, are also on the same page. Read more here

Salesforce eyes financial services market using AI, machine learning

Salesforce is betting big on the financial services sector in India with artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML). The San Francisco-based customer-management software maker is setting up a vertical to tap the country’s financial services market. The initiative includes rolling out its Einstein Analytics for Financial Services, a suite of AI-based customisable tools, targeted at wealth advisors, retail bankers and managers. Read more here

India Inc stares at Rs 9,000-crore hit on IL&FS debt in private PF, pension

After mutual funds (MFs) and insurance companies, India Inc is likely to be the next victim of defaults by the Infrastructure Leasing & Financial Services (IL&FS) group firms. Almost 2,000 companies whose private provident and pension funds have invested in non-convertible debentures of IL&FS group firms are staring at the prospect of booking losses to the tune of Rs 9,000 crore or more if the interest income is added. Read more here

Succession issue may come up for discussion at ITC board meet today

The board of tobacco-to-hotels major, ITC, will meet for the first time since the demise of its chairman and non-executive director, Y C Deveshwar, on Monday. The agenda before the board, circulated much ahead of Deveshwar’s demise on Saturday, was to approve the audited financial results for the quarter and financial year and recommendation of dividend. However, it was most likely that the issue of succession would come up for discussion at the meeting. Read more here

Paytm Mall ropes in EY to check on fraud, targets Rs 10,000 cr in biz

In an effort to prevent frauds and collusion on its marketplace, Paytm Mall on Sunday said it had entered into a tie-up with global advisory firm EY that will undertake frequent audits to identify, analyse and monitor any criminal activity.

EY would provide various in-built and outsourced processes to recommend global practices that will be applied to build a ‘Technology driven Fraud Prevention System’ the company said. Read more here

Rising capacity utilisation does not square up with slowing economy

As the election season nears its end and the poll rhetoric reaches a crescendo, the economy is looking down with a cacophony of bleak-looking indicators in the background.

While the news of consumption slowdown is not news anymore, a deeper look into high frequency economic indicators gives a glimpse of its gravity. Read more here

Sebi queries delay bid by L&T for Mindtree

Larsen and Toubro Ltd (L&T) will have to postpone its open offer to Mindtree shareholders by at least a fortnight after the markets regulator sent late queries to the engineering behemoth that it could answer only on 10 May.

The open offer was scheduled to start on 14 May and close on 27 May, reports LiveMint.

Rise in income, not interest rates, key to deposit growth: RBI research 

What’s causing deposit growth rates to slow? Mutual funds? Gold? Property? None of these, says a central bank research paper. Rather, deposits quicken when incomes rise fast — and the latter is often aided by a robust economy. 

Household savings data show that there is a shift from bank deposits to stocks and mutual fund schemes, where comparative returns have been more lucrative in the recent past, reports The Economics Times.

Corporate credit offtake rises in FY19, but no material change seen

Corporate credit offtake increased significantly in the financial year ended March 31, 2019 compared to the previous year, going by data available with major banks. Yet, the situation on the ground has not showed a commensurate change.

On the contrary, factory output has contracted and early fourth quarter results of India Inc do not suggest an increase in the demand for goods or services, reports The Hindu Businessline.

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