Welcome to the second series of weekly Current Affairs news from HashLearn. In this article, all the IBPS, SSC and CLAT students can get acquainted with the top events that made headlines this week and prepare for their respective ‘General Awareness’ section.
Important News from Banking Sector
RBI rolls out regulations for cross-border mergers
The Reserve Bank of India has framed the regulations for mergers amalgamation and arrangement between Indian and foreign companies. The real beneficiaries of these regulations would be MNCs which in many cases want to consolidate the business of a region and require mergers involving an Indian company with other companies in foreign jurisdictions. The clarity of law also makes corporate planning possible for all Indian business houses having an overseas business.
RBI fines ICICI Bank Rs 58.9 crore for treasury violations
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) imposed a penalty of Rs 58.9 crore on ICICI Bank for violating the central bank’s guidelines governing treasury operations. The RBI said the penalty was imposed for non-compliance with directions on direct sale of securities from its HTM (held-to-maturity) portfolio and its disclosure.
PNB will honour LoU commitment to all banks
Punjab National Bank (PNB) reiterated that it would honour all bonafide commitments to other banks which are also entangled in the Rs 13,600-crore letter of undertaking (LoU) fraud involving firms promoted by Nirav Modi. About 30 banks including Union Bank of India and Allahabad Bank had provided buyers’ credit in favour of overseas suppliers to Nirav Modi firms allegedly against unauthorised bank guarantees
ICICI Bank loan to Videocon under CBI lens
CBI will examine the allegations that Videocon chairman Venugopal Dhoot gave money to a firm promoted by Deepak Kochhar, husband of ICICI Bank CEO and MD Chanda Kochhar, and two of his relatives. The money was transferred six months after the Videocon Group got the Rs 3,250 crore loan in 2012.
ICICI Bank shares drop over 6% to 5-month low as CBI begins preliminary enquiry in Videocon loan case
The bank shares dropped as much as six percent. ICICI Bank shares were among the biggest losers on the indices. Shares of ICICI Bank were trading as low as 6.59% Rs 260 on National Stock Exchange. Meanwhile, Videocon Group Chairman Venugopal Dhoot has said he knew all the 12 members of the panel that had cleared the loan amount and asserted that personal ties between two people do not always result in criminal acts.
SBI to now charge this much for Non-Maintenance of Minimum Balance
State Bank of India (SBI) reduced its penalties for non-maintenance of average monthly balance (AMB) on savings accounts by up to 75 percent. According to country’s largest lender, the charges for non-maintenance of AMB for customers in metro and urban centres abridged from a maximum of Rs. 50 per month plus goods and services tax (GST), to Rs. 15 per month plus GST. The revised charges will be effective from April 01, 2018 and will benefit over 25 crore customers. The lender said that the decision of slashing AMB was taken keeping in view the feedback from various stakeholders.
State Bank hikes FD rates by 10-25 bps
SBI will now offer rates ranging from 6.6 percent to 6.75 percent for tenures of two to 10 years, effective Wednesday. This is SBI’s fourth deposit rate increase in more than three months. A basis point is one-hundredth of a percentage point.
SBI To Create Blockchain-Based Exchange For Recovering NPA’s
India’s largest public sector bank, State Bank of India is looking to create a blockchain-based exchange of Non-Performing Assets (NPA’s). To be launched in association with 30 banks, this platform will assist the banks in data-driven price discovery. The new blockchain solution will boost the efficiency of financial institutions without compromising on data confidentiality and transaction security.
Bandhan’s bumper debut makes it India’s 8th most valued bank
Shares of Bandhan Bank Ltd listed at a 27% premium on the bourses and made a mark as the eighth most valued bank, overtaking the likes of Bank of Baroda and Punjab National Bank after its Rs4,470 crore initial public offer (IPO), the largest ever by a bank, was subscribed 14.63 times last week. It was the second-highest overall subscription for an IPO in 2018 after Amber Enterprises India.
Important Current Affairs News
China to take concrete steps to bridge trade gap, set up industry park: Suresh Prabhu
China has agreed to take concrete steps such as giving more market access to Indian products and services, and setting up industrial parks here to narrow the widening trade deficit, Commerce and Industry Minister Suresh Prabhu said. India has raised the concerns of ballooning trade deficit and the growing difference between imports and exports, at a meeting with his Chinese counterpart Zhong Shan, he said.
Varanasi finally becomes ‘wireless.’
Varanasi is one of the world’s oldest cities and is set to go absolutely modern with electricity as it prepares to go completely wireless. In 2015, Piyush Goyal the former Union minister of state for power and coal had announced Rs. 432-crore project for underground cabling work for over 16 square kilometres, catering to 50,000 consumers. So currently the overhead power cables are dismantled. The project was done by Powergrid, a state-owned company conducting the Integrated Power Development Scheme (IPDS).
Government Guarantee for Indian Railway Finance Corporation (IRFC) Bonds
Indian Railway Finance Corporation’s (IRFC) Rs 5,000-crore bond issuance to LIC will have a government guarantee, the Finance Ministry said today. “The Ministry of Finance has approved the Government guarantee of Rs 5,000 crore in the current financial year for the IRFC bonds to be subscribed by the Life Insurance Corporation (LIC),” an official statement said.
Surat becomes the first district to have 100% solar powered health centres
Surat has become the first district in the country to have 100 percent solar powered Primary Health Centers (PHC).There are a total of 52 PHCs in the district, and all of them are now powered by a solar system. This initiative will not only bring down the electricity bill by 40 percent but also help fight global warming.
CBDT extends the date for Aadhaar-PAN linking till June 30
The Central Board of Direct Taxation (CBDT) has extended the deadline for linking PAN card with Aadhaar until Jun 30 after Supreme Court on March 13th extended the deadline for linking various services until the Apex court delivered its judgement on the matter. If one fails to link Aadhaar with PAN by the final deadline, he/she may not be able to get his/her tax returns processed by the tax department.
Ready and excited-India gears up for a 5G future!
The government of India has set up a high-level forum for drawing a roadmap for the launch of 5G services by 2020, a technology that will make wireless connections incredibly fast with speeds of up to 10, 0000 Mbps in cities and 1, 000 Mbps in villages. While the rollout of 4G networks was all about data connectivity, 5G networks would mean less latency, faster speeds and the ability to make lives more meaningful with technologies like the Internet of Things, which would mean a lot more connected smart devices.
Delhi to get ultra-clean Euro-VI petrol, diesel
Delhi is set to become the first place in India to have Bharat Stage VI (BS-VI) fuel equalling Euro VI standards. Government-controlled oil marketing companies will go completely on BS-VI from Sunday in Delhi. Interestingly, the fuel quality enhancement for petrol and diesel will not come at an extra price for consumers now as companies have decided to pass on the cost when the entire country switches on to higher grade fuel in April 2020.
Telegram raises $1.7 bn in world’s largest coin offering
Encrypted messaging app Telegram has raised 1.7 billion dollars in the world’s largest initial coin offering (ICO). The company’s CEO Pavel Durv plans to use the proceeds to develop the Telegram Open Network blockchain, which includes cryptocurrency Gram. Telegram Open Network is designed to host a new generation of cryptocurrencies and decentralised applications to rival the popular Etherum platform.
Snapchat cuts 7% of its global workforce in March
Snap Inc cut 7 percent of its global workforce in March, as disclosed by it in a regulatory filing. The social media company said it would incur about $10 million of cash expenditure due to severance costs to be reflected in the current quarter ending March 31. The company had said it had 3,069 employees as of 31 December 2017, according to its annual filing.
Rafael Nadal returns to world No. 1 ranking
Spain’s 16 time Grand Slam Champion Rafael Nadal displaced Swiss Roger Federer at the top of the ATP men’s singles ranking. Nadal, who held the number one spot up until February 18th, is now beginning his fifth stint and a 168th week at the top of men’s singles rankings. The 31-year-old has been inside the top 10 since April 2005. Nadal lost his top spot to his long-term rival Roger Federer when the latter defeated his Dutch opponent Robin Haase at Rotterdam Open to become the oldest world No. 1.
Steve Smith and David Warner gave one-year bans as Cameron Bancroft gets a nine-month suspension for ball tampering
Both Warner and Steve Smith have been hit with year-long suspensions, along with nine months for Cameron Bancroft, as Cricket Australia imposed draconian sanctions for “cheating” and “damaging” the sport during the defeat against South Africa in the third Test at Newlands. Cameron Bancroft, the fielder who executed the plan to use sticky tape covered in dirt to manipulate the condition of the ball, has received a nine-month ban after the conclusion of a Cricket Australia investigation.
These were some of the most recent news in the past week. Stay tuned with HashLearn for more weekly current affairs updates.