BANKING - 2019 JANUARY

January 1

SBI Life Insurance signs 'bancassurance' pact with Allahabad Bank
State-owned Allahabad Bank has tied up with SBI Life Insurance to sell the policies of the insurer from over 3,200 branches.
Allahabad Bank and SBI Life Insurance came together and signed a bancassurance pact, to offer a holistic financial planning solution to consumers.
This will empower the consumer to address their complete financial needs under one roof.
Allahabad Bank:
Headquarters: Kolkata

Government infused nearly Rs 11,000 crore capital in public sector banks
The government has infused 10,882 crore rupees in four public sector banks, including UCO Bank and Syndicate Bank.
It is a part of 28,615 crore rupees capital infusion to be done in about half a dozen public sector lenders.
UCO Bank has received 3,074 crore rupees in the equity by way of preferential allotment.
Syndicate Bank:
Headquarters: Manipal

RBI Lifts Six Month Ban, Permits Paytm Payments Bank To Onboard New Customers
Paytm Payments Bank has received the green light from the Reserve Bank of India to restart opening accounts for its customers.
Paytm Payments Bank was banned from adding new accounts on June 20, 2018.
The bank had violated KYC norms, failed to maintain the prescribed net worth of Rs. 100 crore and also violated the end-of-the-day Rs. 1 lakh limit per account.
Reserve Bank of India:
Founded: 1 April 1935, Kolkata

January 2

RBI gives relief to MSME sector, provides for one-time restructuring of loans
Reserve Bank allowed a one-time restructuring of existing debt up to Rs. 25 crore for the companies which have defaulted on payment but the loans given to them have continued to be classified as standard assets.
The decision will help the micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) which are facing a cash crunch in the wake of demonetization and GST implementation.
Restructuring without an asset classification downgrade will save the lenders from higher provisioning burden.
This will encourage banks and non-banking finance companies (NBFCs) to take up restructuring in the case of MSMEs.
Reserve Bank of India:
Founded: 1 April 1935, Kolkata.

RBI released The Financial Stability Report
The Reserve Bank of India released the eighteenth issue of the Financial Stability Report (FSR). The FSR reflects the collective assessment of the Sub-Committee of the Financial Stability and Development Council (FSDC) on risks to financial stability, as also the resilience of the financial system.
The Report also discusses issues relating to development and regulation of the financial sector.
India’s financial system remains stable, and the banking sector shows signs of improvement, even though the global economic environment and the emerging trends in financial sector pose challenges.
The asset quality of banks showed an improvement with the gross non-performing assets (GNPA) ratio of SCBs declining from 11.5% in March 2018 to 10.8% in September 2018.
Reserve Bank of India:
Governor‎: ‎Shaktikanta Das

January 3

Complaints with bank ombudsman surge 25% in FY18
The number of complaints registered at banking ombudsman offices have seen a 25% increase in the fiscal year 2018, with the majority of these complaints coming from urban centres owing to increased awareness and poor internal redressal mechanisms of banks.
According to the RBI Report on Trend and Progress of Banking in India, The banking ombudsman offices in tier-1 cities like New Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, Bengaluru and Hyderabad accounted for more than 57% of the total complaints received by all BO offices.
Of all the complaints received at the ombudsman's offices, 97% of them were resolved in 2017-18, up from 92% a year earlier.
About Reserve Bank of India:
Founded: 1 April 1935, Kolkata

Merger of Vijaya Bank & Dena Bank With Bank of Baroda approved by the cabinet.
The cabinet has approved the merger of Vijaya Bank & Dena Bank with Bank of Baroda. After this merger, Bank of Baroda will become the third biggest public sector bank.
The merger will be effective from April 1.
This is also the first ever three-way merger in Indian banking.
Bank of Baroda (BoB) finalised the share swap ratio for the merger of Vijaya Bank and Dena Bank with itself.
As per the Scheme of Amalgamation, shareholders of Vijaya Bank will get 402 equity shares of BoB for every 1,000 shares held. In case of Dena Bank, its shareholders will get 110 shares for every 1,000 shares of BoB.

January 4

PSU Syndicate Bank And SBI Life Insurance Signed Bancassurance Pact
Syndicate Bank and SBI Life Insurance signed a bancassurance pact aiming to offer a comprehensive financial planning solution to its customers.
The pact was signed between Syndicate Bank MD & CEO, Mrutyunjay Mahapatra and MD and CEO of SBI Life, Sanjeev Nautiyal.
Through the pact, Syndicate Bank will provide penetration in the market with its 3,000 branches and SBI Life’s diverse range of protection, wealth creation and savings insurance products will be brought to the table to the customers.
Syndicate Bank:
Headquarters: Manipal

Cyber frauds in Indian banking sector hiked 50% in FY18: RBI
According to the annual report by the Reserve Bank of India, Banks collectively lost nearly Rs. 110 crore to cyber frauds, which amounted to less than 0.5% of the total money lost to frauds in 2017-18.
Cyber frauds constituted almost one-third of all banking frauds.
In 2017-18, however, frauds related to off-balance sheet operations, foreign exchange transactions, deposit accounts and cyber-activity took centrestage.
Reserve Bank of India:
Founded: 1 April 1935, Kolkata

January 5

ICICI Bank, Small Business FinCredit join hands to provide loans to MSMEs
ICICI Bank, in a first-of-its-kind programme, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Small Business FinCredit India Pvt. Ltd. (SBFC), a systemically important Non-Banking Finance Company for entrepreneurs, to jointly provide credit worth up to Rs 1 crore to MSMEs for a tenure of 15 years.
This MOU was signed under RBI’s circular dated September 21, 2018, that permits banks to engage with a non-banking financial company (NBFC) to co-originate loans for the creation of priority sector assets.
Under this arrangement, ICICI Bank will co-originate loan against property with SBFC at a mutually agreed ratio.
ICICI Bank:
MD & CEO: Mr. Sandeep Bakshi.

January 6

Government amalgamated three Regional Rural Banks - Punjab Gramin Bank, Malwa Gramin Bank and Sutlej Gramin Bank into a single Bank
The Centre has amalgamated threeRegional Rural Banks (RRB) - Punjab Gramin Bank, Malwa Gramin Bank and Sutlej Gramin Bank - into a single RRB with effect from January 1, 2019.
After consulting the sponsor banks of the three RRBs, the central government felt that in the interest of the banks and the areas served by them, they should be amalgamated into a single RRB.
The sponsor banks of the RRBs are National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD), the Government of Punjab and Punjab National Bank, State Bank of India and Punjab and Sind Bank.
Punjab National Bank:
Headquarters: New Delhi

January 8

Bandhan Bank set to acquire Gruh Finance in share swap deal
Bandhan Bank Ltd is set to acquire mortgage lender Gruh Finance Ltd via a share swap, a move aimed at cutting the bank’s promoter holding and expanding its housing finance portfolio.
Bandhan Bank currently commands a market value of around Rs. 63,000 crore, while Gruh Finance has a market cap of around Rs. 23,000 crore.

January 9

Nepal’s central bank Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) asked RBI to declare new Indian currency notes legal in a written plea
The Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB), Nepal’s central monetary authority, wrote to the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to legalize Indian currency notes of denominations higher than Rs. 100 in Nepal.
The Indian bank bills Rs. 200, Rs 500 and Rs. 2,000 which are greater than the said amount has been asked to be made legal tender in Nepal, under the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA).
The NRB said the country’s banking system, including banks, financial institutions and NRB, hold Indian currency denominations of Rs. 500 and Rs. 1,000 worth Rs 48 million.
Before the demonetisation of Rs. 500 and Rs. 1,000 bank notes in November 2016, the RBI had issued a FEMA notification allowing Nepali citizens to carry Rs. 25,000 worth of such bank notes.
After the demonetisation of Rs 500 and Rs. 1,000 Indian currency notes, circulation of new bank notes of denominations Rs. 200, Rs. 500 and Rs. 2,000 was started by the Indian government but they were not legalized in Nepal which led to the government of Nepal to ban usage of notes of higher denominations.

RBI Forms Committee To Boost Digital Payments
Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has constituted a High-Level Committee on Deepening of Digital Payments to encourage digitisation of payments and enhance financial inclusion.
The five-member committee will be headed by UIDAI’s former Chairman NandanNilekani.
RBI stated that the committee will review the existing status of digitization of payments and suggest ways to bridge any gaps in the ecosystem if any.

January 10

Iranian bank allowed to open Mumbai branch.
Iran’s Pasargad Bank has received the necessary clearances to open its branch in Mumbai
India’s UCO Bank will open a branch in Iran.
Both UCO Bank from India and Pasargad Bank from Iran are getting started with the businesses.
The move is also expected to facilitate Indian businesses to trade on easier termswith Iran in the backdrop of the US placing Tehran under crippling sanctions with embargos on dollar trade.
Iran is one of India’s top sources of oil and though New Delhi has reduced its imports under US pressure, it has conveyed to Washington that oil imports cannot be done away with.

January 12

Reserve Bank of India (RBI) made a few changes in the Gold Monetisation Scheme (GMS) 2015.
According to the changes, it included charitable institutions and the central government under the ambit of the scheme.
Due to this, besides individual and joint depositors, the scheme could be availed by charitable institutions, the central government, the state government or any other entity owned by the central government or the state government.
It also allowed joint deposits of two or more eligible depositors in which deposit in such cases shall be credited to the joint deposit account.
About GMS:
Launched in 2015, by the government, GMS aims to mobilise the gold held by households and institutions in the country.
According to the scheme, banks’ customers are allowed to deposit their idle gold holdings for a fixed period in return for interest in the range of 2.25-2.50%.

January 13

Rs. 3 crore penalty slapped on Citibank India for non-compliance of criteria for directors: RBI
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI), under the relevant provisions of the Banking Regulation Act, 1949, imposed a penalty of Rs. 3 crore on Citibank India for non-compliance in criteria for directors of the bank.
Citibank has been accused of deficiencies in regulatory compliance and of directions regarding the ‘fit-and-proper criteria’ for directors of the bank.
Citibank Headquarters: New York City.

January 14

IDFC Bank's name changed to IDFC First Bank
Lender IDFC Bank on Saturday will now be known as IDFC First Bank.
The lender's merger with non banking finance company (NBFC) Capital First took effect following the lodging of the relevant NCLT order with the Registrar of Companies.
The merged entity has a combined loan book of 1.03 lakh crore.
Capital First Founder and Chairman V. Vaidynathhas been appointed the Managing Director and CEO of the merged entity.

RBI Flags Spike in NPAs Under Modi's Mudra Scheme
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has raised a red-flag on the spike in non-performing assets (NPAs) under the government's flagship scheme to support micro enterprises in the country - the Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojana.
The scheme might turn out to be the next big source of NPAs, which have plagued the banking system.
The central bank has flagged that bad loans under PMMY have risen to Rs. 11,000 crore
As per the annual report of PMMY, 2017-18, the total disbursements under the scheme stood at Rs. 2.46 trillion in FY18.

January 16

Bank of Baroda partners with Invoicemart as a TReDS partner
Bank of Baroda has tied up with Invoicemart, a Digital invoice discounting marketplace as TReDS partner.
Trade Receivables Electronic Discounting System (TReDS) is an online platform through which, micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) can access funds for working capital without the hassle of applying for loans.
Invoicemart, India’s leading digital invoice discounting marketplace by A. TREDS Ltd, a joint venture between Axis Bank Ltd and mjunction services ltd.
The partnership with Bank of Baroda will now provide buyers and sellers registered on Invoicemart with a variety of options.
About Bank of Baroda:
Founded in: 1908
Headquarters: Vadodara, Gujarat
Current MD & CEO: P.S. Jayakumar
Tagline: 'India’s International Bank'
Invoicemart CEO & MD: MrKalyanbasu.

Sovergian Gold Bond Scheme 2018 - 2019 (Series-V) Opens.
Ministry of finance announced that a new series of sovereign gold bonds will be available at Rs. 3,214 per gram from 14th January to 18th January 2019.
The Government of India in consultation with the RBI has decided to allow discount of Rs. 50 per gram from the issue price to those investors who apply online and the payment is made through digital mode.
Interest rate of 2.50% per annum will be offered to the investors which is payable semi-annually. The interest earned is taxable
About Sovereign gold bond scheme: Launched 2015
Sovereign gold bonds are issued by the RBI on behalf of the government.
The tenor of the Bond is of 8 years with an exit option in 5th, 6th and 7th year.

January 18

SBI along with others banks agreed to provide finance for Nagpur-Mumbai ‘Samruddhi Corridor’ expressway project.
Among the consortium of banks, SBI will be providing the highest amount which is Rs. 8,500 crore.
Other parties include: Punjab National Bank, Bank of Baroda, Bank of Maharashtra as well as the Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) of India.
The estimated cost of the project, being constructed by the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation, is around 50,000 crores.
Out of this, around 26,000 crores are required for the construction of the expressway.
The corridor will have 25 toll plazas, and the toll will be collected for 40 years.

Reserve Bank of India has injected another 10,000 crore rupees into the system
The Reserve Bank of India announced that it will inject 10,000 crore rupees into the system to increase liquidity through open market operations (OMOs).
The offers have been instructed to be submitted in electronic format on the RBI Core Banking Solution (E-Kuber) system.
It also plans to inject liquidity under OMOs for 50,000 crore rupees in January 2019.
The central bank has so far injected Rs. 20,000 through OMOs in January 2019.

RBI slaps Rs. 1 crore fine on Bank of Maharashtra
This is for non-compliance of Know Your Customer (KYC) guidelines and fraud-classification norms.
It was in the year 2018, the RBI had imposed a penalty of Rs. 1 crore on BoM on account of delay on the part of the bank to detect and report fraud in accounts.

January 19

Exim Bank Signs Long Term Contract With Uzbekistan For Supply of Uranium
India has signed a long-term contract with Uzbekistan for supply of uranium ore concentrates to widen its source base for the nuclear fuel.
Uzbekistan is the seventh largest exporter of uranium in the world. The Exim Bank signed an agreement with Uzbekistan to extend a 200 million US dollar line of credit for financing housing and social infrastructure projects.

HDFC Standard Life Insurance is now HDFC Life Insurance
HDFC Standard Life Insurance changed its name to HDFC Life Insurance following the receipt of relevant approvals from regulatory authorities.
The change in name is effective right off the bat and the company will henceforth operate under the name HDFC Life Insurance Company Ltd.
HDFC Bank Headquarters: Mumbai, MD: Aditya Puri, Tagline: We Understand your world.

January 20

IDFC First Bank gets RBI approval for appointment of V. Vaidyanathanas MD & CEO
The Reserve Bank of India has approved the appointment of V. Vaidyanathan as MD and CEO of IDFC First Bank for a period of three years.
In December 2018, IDFC Bank and non-banking financial company Capital First completed their merger, creating a combined loan asset book of Rs 1.03 lakh crore for the merged entity IDFC First Bank.

January 22

IBBI organised Insolvency and Bankruptcy Awareness Programme at Vadodara, Gujarat
The Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India (IBBI) organised an Insolvency and Bankruptcy Awareness Programme at Vadodara, Gujarat.
It is organised in collaboration with three Insolvency Professional Agencies, namely, the Indian Institute of Insolvency Professionals of ICAI (lead partner), the ICSI Institute of Insolvency Professionals, and the Insolvency Professional Agency of Institute of Cost Accountants of India.

January 24

RBI Initiates Industrial Outlook Survey (IOS) and Services and Infrastructure Outlook (SIOS).
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has initiated two surveys namely, Industrial Outlook Survey (IOS), and Services and Infrastructure Outlook Survey (SIOS).
The two quarterly surveys aim to examine the current situation including the job scenario in India’s manufacturing, services and infrastructure sector.
The 85th round of quarterly Industrial Outlook survey would be conducted by Hansa Research Group Pvt. Ltd and it will assesses business sentiments of the current quarter and expectations for the ensuing quarter (April-June 2019).
The 20th round of Quarterly Services and Infrastructure Outlook Survey (SIOS) will be conducted by Spectrum Planning India Ltd. And it will assess the business situation from selected companies in the services and Infrastructure sector in the current quarter and their outlook in the ensuing quarter (April-June 2019).

Anushree Jindal launches maiden biz venture Svamaan Financial Services
Anushree Jindal, daughter-in-law of JSW Group chairman Sajjan Jindal, has announced the beginning of her microfinance venture Svamaan Financial Services with Rs 10 crore “personal family money” as seed capital. 
Reserve Bank of India approved the application of Svamaan Financial Services as an RBI Registered Non-Banking Financial Company – Micro Finance Institution (NBFC – MFI).
Svamaan Financial Services aims to promote financial inclusion for rural woman and micro-enterprises. It will operate initially in Karnataka and Maharashtra and plans to enter eastern markets of Odisha and Chhattisgarh by 2020.
About Svamaan Financial Services:
Founder: Anushree Jindal
CEO: Kiran Kumar
Head Office: Mumbai.

YES Bank ties up with Maharashtra to onboard fair price shops as BCs
The Maharashtra government has partnered with private sector lender YES Bank, under its e-PDS State programme, to onboard fair price shops (FPS) as Business Correspondent Agents.
YES Bank will onboard close to 40 per cent of all fair price shops in Maharashtra, spanning 12 districts such as Palghar, Thane, Pune, Kolhapur, Latur.
The Bank will engage Fair Price Shops to provide banking services such as small-value cash deposits into any Bank Account including Domestic Remittances and withdrawal from any Bank Account via Aadhaar Enabled Payment System (AEPS).
About Yes Bank:
MD & CEO: Rana Kapoor
Head Office: Mumbai
Tagline: Experience our Expertise.

January 25

SBI Ecowrap Report recommends Unconditional Cash Transfer to Farmers
State Bank of India recommended Unconditional Cash Transfer to farmers to alleviate the agrarian distress instead of Universal Basic Income (UBI) scheme in its ‘Ecowrap’ report.
As per the report, The Government had estimated Agriculture Subsidy (Plus Support) at Rs. 98,100 crore in the 2019-20 budget which includes 13,000 crore for Crop Insurance, 15,000 crore for Interest Subsidy and Rs. 70,100 crore for Fertilizer subsidy.
SBI Ecowrap Report, Government needs to provide cash support in the range of Rs. 10000 to Rs 12000 per annum to make it completely cash neutral and such as scheme would cost government about 1.2 lakh crore per annum.
About SBI:
Headquarters: Mumbai, Maharashtra.
Chairman: Rajnish Kumar

January 27

SBI Card And Etihad Guest Launches Visa Credit Cards For International Travellers
SBI Card and Etihad Guest, the loyalty programme of Etihad Airways, have joined hands to launch a travel specific Visa credit card for members and Indian travelers.
This is the first international co-brand partnership of SBI Card, the country's second largest credit card issuer.
Travel is now a key spend category for Indian consumers, with 33 per cent of overall card spends in the SBI Card portfolio made within the travel industry.
The card will be available in two variants, Etihad Guest SBI Card and Etihad Guest SBI Premier Card; will bring an unmatched value proposition to Etihad Guest members and international travellers from India.
SBI card MD & CEO: Hardayal Prasad.

Small Finance and Payments Banks to Offer Atal Pension Yojana
The Ministry of Finance has announced that "Payments Banks and Small Finance Banks" will offer social security scheme Atal Pension Yojana (APY) to their subscribers. It was done to strengthen the existing channels of APY distribution.
According to the Ministry, currently, there are 11 Payments Banks and 10 Small Finance Banks that have received the license from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to start their operations.
About Atal Pension Yojana (APY):
The APY was launched by Prime Minister NarendraModi on May 9, 2015.
It is the first ever guaranteed pension product, open to all citizens between the ages of 18 and 40 years.
It provides a minimum guaranteed pension of Rs1,000 to Rs. 5,000 per month, after the age of 60 years, depending on the monthly contribution made by a subscriber.

January 28

Union Finance Minister Piyush Goyal will meet the CEOs of Public Sector Banks
Union Finance Minister Piyush Goyal will meet the CEOs of public sector banks in New Delhi to take stock of banking sector and discuss ways to improve their financial health.
The meeting assumes significance as it comes just three days ahead of the Budget 2019-20. Sources said, the meeting will review the credit flow to MSMEs, agriculture and retail sectors.
Mr. Goyal has been given additional charge of the Finance Ministry as Arun Jaitley is away to the US for treatment.

January 30

India First Life Insurance buys 9% stake in CSC e-Governance Services
Life insurance firm IndiaFirst buys 9% stake in CSC e-Governance services India Limited. This stake purchase demonstrates bringing personal risk protection to all sections of the society in the four year association with Common Services Centre (CSC).
IndiaFirst Life Insurance is a joint venture between Bank of Baroda, Andhra Bank and Legal and General (UK), while CSC is an integral part of Digital India initiative of the government under Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology.
About India First Life Insurance: MD & CEO - R.M. Vishakha
UAE, Saudi central banks launch common digital currency called ''Aber''
The central banks of the UAE and Saudi Arabia have launched a common digital currency called "Aber"
It will be used in financial settlements between the two countries through Blockchains and Distributed Ledgers technologies
Through this digital currency, both the United Arab Emirates Central Bank (UAECB) and the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) are studying the impact on the improvement and reduction of remittance costs and the assessments of risk.
SBI set to own 15% of Jet Airways after debt for equity swap
India’s largest lender State Bank of India (SBI) is set to swap part of its loans into a stake of at least 15 per cent in Jet Airways.
The airline’s founder and chairman Naresh Goyal stake cut to below 20% from 51 per cent
Etihad Airways PJSC, the foreign partner with a 24% stake, is expected to infuse additional funds to take its holding to more than 40%

January 31

NABARD Fix 2019-20 priority sector lending target at Rs. 1,01,378 crore for Telangana
The National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) has pegged the total priority sector credit potential for Telangana at Rs. 1,01,378.60 crore for 2019-20.
This represents a 9% increase over the target for 2018-19 which at 83,389 crore
NABARD has released its State Focus Paper at the State Credit Seminar, this serves as a guiding document for banks and state government.


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