03 january 2004
for 4 psu general insurance companies staffers
new delhi: the government on friday cleared the
much delayed voluntary retirement scheme for class i,
class iii and class iv staff of the four public sector
general insurance companies - new india assurance, national
insurance, oriental insurance and united india insurance.
the scheme is effective january 1 and will remain open
for the next 60 days.
bank lowers plr to 11 per cent
new delhi: the jammu & kashmir bank has announced
reduction of prime lending rate (plr) to 11 per cent effective
from january 1, 2004 from the earlier 11.5 per cent while
also slashing down interest rates on car loans by 200
basis points . the interest rate on auto loans has come
down from 11.5 per cent to 9.5 per cent.
02 january 2004
wants 100% equity-driven pension plan out
mumbai: the insurance regulatory and development
authority (irda) has asked life insurance companies to
withdraw the growth option for pension, gratuity and superannuation
funds, where investment in equity is up to 100 per cent.
a small note to this effect was sent early this week to
life insurance companies. government officials have, however,
indicated that the pension reforms will allow for up to
100 per cent investment in equities.
this runs contrary to irda's view, which does not believe
that pension plans be allowed to invest up to 100 per
cent in equities. hdfc standard life insurance company,
which today launched its unit-linked endownment and unit-linked
pension plans, has been asked to withdraw the growth option
under its existing unit-linked group gratuity plan.
bank home loans have free nic cover
bangalore: vijaya bank has tied up with national
insurance company ltd to offer a free insurance policy
to those availing themselves of housing loans from the
bank. vijaya home loan suraksha bima covers borrowers
against destruction of the property under home loan in
a natural calamity and a personal life cover of the borrower.
bank feels that this value-added feature is likely to
boost its home loan portfolio in near term. incidentally,
vijaya bank is the first bank in the country to offer
bundled insurance policy covering housing property and
personal accident of the borrowers.
standard unveils unit-linked plan, pension product
mumbai: hdfc standard life has launched its unit-linked
insurance and pension plans. the premium for both the
products will be invested in units of the investment fund,
as per the investors' choice.
minimum premium amount is rs 10,000 each year for both
the plans, with a single premium option of rs 25,000 for
the pension plan. the plans are targeted at individuals
who want to make their own investment choices. they also
have the flexibility of increasing premium contributions
in any existing accounts. the endowment plan allows investments
in liquid, secure, balanced and growth plans with the
equity component rising from 0 to 100 per cent.
01 january 2004
finance fails to repay investors despite clb order
coimbatore: lloyds finance ltd, a non-banking finance
company, has failed to implement the directives of the
company law board on repaying investors here, their dues.
bank lowers plr to 11 pcer cent
new delhi: central bank of india on wednesday pegged
the benchmark prime lending rate at 11 per cent and slashed
the interest rate for agriculture and ssi loans, while
offering higher returns on savings of senior citizens.
fixes benchmark plr at 11 per cent
thiruvananthapuram: state bank of travancore has
fixed its benchmark prime lending rate at 11 per cent,
representing a reduction by 50 basis points from its current
30 december 2003
slashes deposit rates; benchmark plr at 10.25%
mumbai: state bank of india (sbi) has fixed its
benchmark prime lending rate (plr) at 10.25 per cent,
effecting a cut of 0.25 percentage point from the existing
rate. the bank has also announced a deposit rate cut of
0.25 percentage point in particular maturities. the new
lending rate to be called state bank advanced rate and
will be effective 1 january 2004. with this tenor linked
prime lending rates will be discontinued, according to
a press release from the bank.
existing borrowers of loans with rates presently linked
to the plr, state bank medium term lending rate and state
bank short term advance rate will now be linked to the
new rate, and will therefore, enjoy a reduction of 25
basis points in terms of interest rate with effect from
1 january. in recent weeks, three major banks have snipped
their benchmark plr in response to the reserve bank of
india suggesting to banks to determine benchmark plr by
taking into account actual cost of funds, operating expenses
and a minimum margin to cover regulatory requirement of
provisioning/capital charge and profit margin.
bank to buy stake in two shriram group firms
chennai: uti bank will pick up a little over 5
per cent stake in two shriram group companies, shriram
investments ltd and shriram transport finance company
ltd. the bank has an arrangement with the shriram group,
under which it makes available funds for the shriram group
companies to lend to its customers.
the promoters of the shriram group, through the closely
held company shriram chits & investments p ltd, will
also raise their stake in the two companies. in shriram
investments, the promoters will raise their holding by
around 9 per cent, on the post-expanded capital of rs
45 crore. in shriram transport, the promoters' stake will
go up by around 7.5 per cent, company officials were quoted
29 december 2003
invest more in gilts
mumbai: banks have been putting even more of their
money in gilts. on an incremental basis in 2003-2004,
bank investment in government securities is far higher
than the growth in credit. indeed, their investment in
gilts accounts for roughly 66 per cent of their incremental
assets, against the stipulated 25 per cent.
according to the reserve bank of india's weekly statistical
data released on saturday the incremental non-food credit
of banks in the first nine months of the year (between
april and december 12) is rs 55,125 crore - about 60 per
cent of banks' investment in government securities during
this period. banks put rs 97,197 crore in government paper
during the nine months.
bill will lapse if polls are advanced
new delhi: an early general election will bring
the curtains down on quite a few significant bills the
bjp government had pushed for during its tenure, says
a report. of these the most important will be the long-pending
banking companies (acquisition and repeal) bill to reduce
government stake in public sector banks to 33 per cent.
the government will also have to re-promulgate the ordinance
to keep alive the national tax tribunal as the bill will
lapse with the dissolution of the lok sabha.
banking bill was introduced in the lok sabha in december
2001 as part of the budget promise made by former finance
minister yashwant sinha. the bill is yet to return from
the standing committee on finance, which has not submitted
its report on it. the government securities bill to make
the gilts market attractive for retail investors by allowing
them to transfer or mortgage their debt securities is
also likely to share the same fate.
to move rbi for recast of priority sector lending norms
mumbai: the industrial development bank of india
(idbi), which has been converted into a banking company
by parliament, will soon initiate discussions with the
reserve bank of india (rbi) so that development finance,
which will remain its core area of activity, is brought
within the definition of priority sector for it, a newspaper
idbi will also apply for 100 branch licences soon as it
begins its conversion into a full-fledged bank. currently,
idbi has 36 branch offices which will be converted into
bank branches once the change takes place operationally.
idbi has also invited presentations for a fresh brand-building
exercise which would reposition the institution in its
new avatar before the public. the presentations would
list of reports
on finance diary