Crony capitalism a big threat to countries like India
RBI Governor Dr Raghuram Rajan said, "One of the greatest dangers to the growth of developing countries is the middle income trap, where crony capitalism creates oligarchies that slow down growth." Even as our democracy and our economy have become more vibrant, an important issue in the recent election was whether we had substituted the crony socialism of the past with crony capitalism, where the rich and the influential are alleged to have received land, natural resources and spectrum in return for payoffs to venal politicians. By killing transparency and competition, crony capitalism is harmful to free enterprise, opportunity, and economic growth. And by substituting special interests for the public interest, it is harmful to democratic expression. If there is some truth to these perceptions of crony capitalism, a natural question is why people tolerate it. Why do they vote for the venal politician who perpetuates it?... Read more
June IIP at 3.4%
The Quick Estimates of Index of Industrial Production (IIP) with base 2004-05 for the month of June 2014 have been released by the Central Statistics Office of the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation. IIP is compiled using data received from 16 source agencies viz. Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion (DIPP); Indian Bureau of Mines; Central Electricity Authority; Joint Plant Committee; Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas; Office of Textile Commissioner; Department of Chemicals & Petrochemicals; Directorate of Sugar; Department of Fertilizers; Directorate of Vanaspati, Vegetable Oils & Fats; Tea Board; Office of Jute Commissioner; Office of Coal Controller; Railway Board; Office of Salt Commissioner and Coffee Board.
The General Index for the month of June 2014 stands at 170.5, which is 3.4% higher as compared to the level in the month of June 2013. The cumulative growth for the period April-June 2014-15 over the corresponding period of the previous year stands at 3.9%. The Indices of Industrial Production for the Mining, Manufacturing and Electricity sectors for the month of June 2014 stand at 121.5, 178.2 and 181.6 respectively, with the corresponding growth rates of 4.3%, 1.8% and 15.7% as compared to June 2013 (Statement I). The cumulative growth in the three sectors during April-June 2014-15 over the corresponding period of 2013-14 has been 3.2%, 3.1% and 11.3% respectively...Read More
WPI inflation stood at 5.19%
The annual rate of inflation, based on monthly WPI, stood at 5.19% (provisional) for the month of July, 2014 (over July,2013) as compared to 5.43% (provisional) for the previous month and 5.85% during the corresponding month of the previous year. Build up inflation rate in the financial year so far was 2.38% compared to a build up rate of 3.17% in the corresponding period of the previous year.
The movement of the index for the various commodity groups is summarized below:-
PRIMARY ARTICLES (Weight 20.12%)
The index for this major group rose by 2.7 percent to 256.6 (provisional) from 249.9 (provisional) for the previous month. The groups and items which showed variations during the month are as follows:-
- The index for ‘Food Articles’ group rose by 3.6 percent to 258.6 (provisional) from 249.7 (provisional) for the previous month due to higher price of fruits & vegetables (16%), maize (8%), condiments & spices and urad (6% each), jowar (5%), masur (4%), egg, arhar and tea (2% each) and pork, beef & buffalo meat, mutton, wheat, barley, bajra and ragi (1% each). However, the price of fish-inland (15%), gram and fish-marine (3% each), poultry chicken (2%) and moong (1%) declined.
- The index for ‘Non-Food Articles’ group rose by 0.8 percent to 218.1 (provisional) from 216.4 (provisional) for the previous month due to higher price of guar seed and gingelly seed (sesamum) (7% each), copra (coconut) (4%), castor seed and niger seed (3% each) and rape & mustard seed, fodder, cotton seed and mesta (1% each). However, the price of raw jute (5%), raw rubber (4%) and raw silk, soyabean, sunflower and groundnut seed (1% each) declined...Read More
Global gold demand continues to recalibrate in Q2 2014
The latest World Gold Council Gold Demand Trends report, covering the period April – June 2014, shows that global gold demand continues to demonstrate a return to long-term trends after an exceptional year in 2013. The latest World Gold Council Gold Demand Trends report, covering the period April – June 2014, shows that global gold demand continues to demonstrate a return to long-term trends after an exceptional year in 2013. Total global gold demand in Q2 stood at 964 tonnes (t), 16% lower than the same period last year, as consumers and investors pulled back and consolidated their activity. Global jewellery demand, which represents more than half of total global demand, was unsurprisingly down 30% year-on-year to 510t. In comparison Q2 2014 was 11% higher than Q2 2012, extending the broad upward trend evident since 2009. India and China remain significant drivers of the global jewellery market, purchasing 154t and 143t respectively. In what is traditionally a quieter quarter for jewellery, consumers continued to digest opportunistic purchases made in 2013 and adopted a more "needs" based approach to their jewellery buying. Indian jewellery buying was also affected by high value purchases being restricted in the run up to the election and the continued impact of import restrictions on gold. Meanwhile, there were continued signs of recovery in some Western markets as jewellery demand in the US rose by 15% to 26t and the UK rose 21% to 4t as consumer confidence continued to grow in line with the economy and yellow gold came back into fashion...Read More
Petrol price to be cut by Rs 1.89-2.38/litre from 15 August
Petrol price will be cut by Rs 1.89-2.38 per litre from 15 August, Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan reportedly said. Report stated that Pradhan took to his Twitter account to say that the fuel price will be reduced from midnight of August 14/15.
Pradhan made announcement more than 31 hours before price cut is to be implemented.
Earlier On Tuesday, B Ashok, Chairman of Indian Oil Corp had indicated of a price cut on the Independence Day. Oil firms had last cut rates on August 1 by Rs 1.09 per litre.
Škoda Superb – Botoxed!
Škoda had well and truly laid down the gauntlet to the C/D-segment sedans, when it relaunched the Octavia brand in India in late 2013 to rave reviews. Not to rest on its laurels, Škoda decided to do something with its top-of-the-line Superb, and unveiled a facelifted version at this year’s Auto Expo in Delhi in February 2014. Launched in 2004 in India, the Superb had won over many with the sheer space on offer inside, and the grunt generated while on the move. The car went through a metamorphosis in 2008, when the design was made more contemporary, and the engine was moved from the 2.4-litre powerplant to a smaller 1.8-litre one, without compromising on the performance dynamics. The smaller mill also took care of the mileage issues to some extent. We decided to take the petrol and diesel versions of the facelifted Škoda Superb for a longish spin to figure out if the changes were mere cosmetic or whether there was anything else on offer.
Looks and design
This is the real part where Škoda has done changes on the Superb. This is a mere facelift (unlike the generation change effected in 2008), wherein design elements have been tweaked to make it look younger and more contemporary, even as the global design studio works on the next generation Superb for launch sometime in 2015 possibly. Hence, before we call the people at Škoda lazy, we need to understand that they merely want to restrict the competition from eating their lunch, till such time the new product is ready to take charge. While overall dimensions have been kept the same, Škoda has made the new Superb look smarter and sharper, and has eliminated the rounded edges of the current Superb and replaced them with straight lines, to make it look a bit sportier...Read More
Home loans: Why is it important to get your home insured?
With the Government’s latest measures on tax exemptions, incentives for the real estate sector and the Reserve Bank of India’s announcement on the issue of long term bonds by banks for infrastructure financing and affordable housing, it is inevitable that you will be in an urge to buy a home as you can now look at saving more taxes on your home loans while paying lower equated monthly installments or EMIs.
Experts are of the view that demand for housing will be made affordable to some extent and this move will also pump up the demand for home loans.
The move is expected to reduce EMIs of a home loan borrower by nearly 8-10%. That apart, the recent tax incentives of raising deduction on interest on home loans from Rs 1.50 lakh to Rs 2 lakh will further help the individual to boost his annual savings to nearly Rs 1 lakh... Read more
Ipsos Economic Pulse of the World: India is most optimistic country
India is the most optimistic country in the world with 70% Indians expecting that its economy will be stronger in next six months, a rise of staggering 10 points, according to a report by global research firm Ipsos. According to the "Ipsos Economic Pulse of the World" study, India's economic confidence level has shot up to 75% in June 2014, an astounding rise of 9 points making India the joint 3rd most economically confident country in the world after Saudi Arabia, Germany, and sharing the position with Sweden.
Almost half 47% Indians believe that the local economy which impacts their personal finance is good, a significant rise of 4 points. "Indian economy is showing signs of recovery with green shoots on the horizon. The growth in auto sales, exports, services sector, and healthy corporate performance — all seem to suggest that growth appears to have rebounded," said Amit Adarkar, Managing Director, Ipsos in India. "Indians are hopeful that the country's new Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, will be able to push through further pro-growth policies as his party has a majority in Parliament," added Adarkar. The online Ipsos Economic Pulse of the World survey was conducted in June 2014 among 18,011 people in 25 countries. The average global economic assessment of national economies surveyed in 24 countries remains unchanged as 39% of global citizens rate their national economies to be ‘good," showing no change over the last quarter...Read More
35% working couples in metros plan quick getaway on Independence Day weekend: ASSOCHAM
About 35 per cent working couples across metros have planned for an escape for the extended weekend this Independence Day, noted a quick survey conducted by ASSOCHAM Social Development Foundation. About five lakh travelers are likely to make a voyage to renowned weekend destinations, as per the ASSOCHAM survey based on the feedback received from various working couples and tour operators in metros. "The weekend starting this Independence Day on Friday gets extended up to Janmashtami on Monday (August 18) and about 35 per cent of working couples in metros have planned to make it an extended holiday and escape to the nearby tourist destinations," highlighted the ASSOCHAM survey.
The ASSOCHAM representatives interacted with about 500 working couples to gauge their mood and plans for the Independence Day weekend in five cities of Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Delhi-NCR, Kolkata and Mumbai during the last fortnight. While about 35 per cent respondents conceded they had planned their itinerary in advance, about 55 per cent said they would relax at home and enjoy some good quality time with their family and the remaining 10 per cent said they have not made any plans so far, pointed out the ASSOCHAM survey. "With work schedules getting hectic by the day, working couples in India impatiently await weekends and are thus planning to make the most of this extended weekend," said D.S. Rawat, secretary general of ASSOCHAM while releasing the chamber’s survey...Read More
Your loan can be rejected without any mistake of yours!
A bank is an organization. An organization made of people. When there is human element involved, errors are bound to happen.
While the errors have substantially reduced ever since the banking processes have been computerized, sometimes mistakes do creep in, just like it happened with our customer Raj Mundra, a Bangalore-based techie.
Mundra had pulled out his personalized credit score last year from Cibil.com as a routine. It stood at a healthy score of 785... Read more
Internet grows to 276 million domain names in the Q1FY14
VeriSign, Inc., a global leader in domain names and Internet security, announced five million domain names were added to the Internet in the first quarter of 2014, bringing the total number of registered domain names to 276 million worldwide across all top-level domains (TLDs) as of March 31, 2014, according to the latest Domain Name Industry Brief. The increase of five million domain names globally equates to a growth rate of 1.7% over the fourth quarter of 2013. Worldwide registrations have grown by 19.3 million, or 7.5%, year over year. The .com and .net TLDs experienced aggregate growth, reaching a combined total of approximately 128.5 million domain names in the adjusted zone in the first quarter of 2014. This represents a 4% increase year over year. As of March 31, 2014, the base of registered names in .com equalled 113.2 million names, while .net equalled 15.2 million names. New .com and .net registrations totalled 8.6 million during the first quarter of 2014. In the first quarter of 2013, new .com and .net registrations totalled 8.8 million.
Windows apps make travel easy
Are you still contemplating whether you should travel over the long August weekend? How will you manage travel? What about stay and places to eat at? Are there any ongoing deals? To help you plan your holiday better, the Windows app store presents 5 holiday-friendly apps that will not only help you reach your travel destination with ease as well as get the maximum fun out of your holiday!
Start at the beginning – book your tickets! Be it your favourite hill station up north or the beaches down south, the highly user-friendly IRCTC app available ONLY on the Windows platform, is the easiest way to book your train tickets while juggling between meetings during the week.
Skyscanner’s mobile app helps you land the best deals as it gives you complete information on the cheapest flight prices, hotel rates and bus/car bookings. With cool features like price charts and price calendars, Skyscanner assists you in planning a holiday and lets you know when the prices are lowest.
They say when in Rome, do what the Romans do. A vacation is all about exploring the place and knowing where to do what. Check out the Local Search app that will help you navigate from the nearest coffee shop that sells your favourite cinnamon cappuccino, to the closest gas station through a free text search option according to your current location.
ATM FinderNeed some hard cash urgently to fund the next round of drinks at a local shack that doesn’t take cards? Well, we help you find your money, honey! Now let Windows ATM Finder app be your friend in need and help navigate you to the nearest ATM based on your location. Features like Route Info to ATM, multiple ATM options close to your location, etc. make getting hold of cash a snap!
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