Banking and Financial Awareness – 56

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18 May, 2014

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IDFC

1) The Reserve Bank of India on 2 April 2014 granted in-principle approval of bank licences to which two entitites? – IDFC Limited and Bandhan Financial Services Private Limited (These two firms pipped to post 23 other applicants, which included some well-known financial and industrial houses like Muthoot Finance, Reliance Capital, Tata Sons, IFCI, Aditya Birla Nuvo, Bajaj Finserv, LIC Housing Finance, L&T Finance Holdings and Shriram Capital. IDFC was established in 1997 and acts as a specialized financial intermediary for infrastructure projects. Bandhan Financial is India’s largest micro finance institution with over 4.5 lakh borrowers and was set up in 2002)

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2) Who was appointed as the new Deputy Governor of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on 3 April 2014? – R. Gandhi (He was appointed by the Union Govt. for a period of three years. The appointment follows Anand Sinha relinquishing his charge as Deputy Governor in mid-January 2014. The RBI now has four Deputy Governors – KC Chakrabarty, HR Khan, Urjit Patel and R. Gandhi. However, KC Chakrabarty too had announced his retirement and RBI is also seeking a replacement for him)

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3) The Finance Ministry released a draft of the Direct Taxes Code (DTC) on 1 April 2014. This draft focuses on raising more revenue from high net worth individuals, while leaving the slabs unchanged for others. In this draft high slab of income-tax has been proposed for individuals and Hindu Undivided Family (HUF) belonging to ‘super-rich’ category. What is the criterion of income for this ‘super-rich’ category? – Annual income above Rs. 10 crore

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4) What is the proposed tax slab for super-rich individuals and Hindu Undivided Family (HUF) in the draft of the Direct Taxes Code (DTC), which was released on 1 April 2014? – 35%

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5) What is the proposed additional tax on those earning over Rs 1 crore through dividend income in the draft of the Direct Taxes Code (DTC), which was released on 1 April 2014? – 10%

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6) In its first bi-monthly monetary policy statement issued on 1 April 2014, the RBI announced which major relief for saving bank account holders? – It asked banks to cut down services on low-balance accounts and do away with fines (In this regard the RBI said that it proposes to frame comprehensive consumer protection regulations based on domestic experience and best global banking practices. Instead of levying penal charges for non-maintenance of minimum balance in ordinary savings bank accounts, banks should limit services available on such accounts to those available to basic savings bank deposit accounts and restore the services when the balances improve to the minimum required level)

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7) Private sector bank Axis Bank on 27 March 2014 launched its own Kisan Credit Card, which is aimed at helping farmers access liquidity round-the-clock. The bank claimed that it is first new generation private sector bank to launch an electronic Kisan Credit Card on the RuPay platform. In which year the Kisan Credit Card scheme was launched? – in 1998 (The scheme was introduced in August 1998 and since then, a host of banks, a majority of them in the state-run space, have launched such cards)

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8) The capital market regulator, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) on 29 March 2014 got back the power to act against ponzi schemes, illegal deposit schemes and assess call data records in securities-related offences after the SEBI Ordinance was re-promulgated. This happened after the Finance Ministry managed to get the nod of the Election Commission and Cabinet on re-promulgation of the SEBI Ordinance and finally from the President. Under this ordinance, which pooled money schemes would be compulsorily registered with the SEBI? – Schemes with deposits over Rs. 100 crore (This Ordinance lapsed on 17 January 2014 after the Government failed in getting the Securities (laws) Amendment Bill passed in the monsoon, winter and extended winter session of the 15th Lok Sabha, which was adjourned sine die on 21 February 2014)

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9) The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on 27 March 2014 extended the deadline for implementation of Basel III norms by the Indian banks to 31 March 2019. What was the earlier deadline for implementation of this norm? – 31 March 2018 (Under this norm Indian banks need to have a core capital ratio of 8% and a total capital adequacy ratio of 11.5% against the present 9%. The norm has been devised to strengthen the regulation, supervision and risk management of the banking sector)

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10) Who was appointed as the new President of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) during March 2014? – Ajay S. Shriram (Ajay S. Shriram is the Chairman and Sr. Managing Director of DCM Shriram Ltd and he was elected as the President of CII for 2014-15. He succeeds S Gopalakrishnan of Infosys as the new President. Naushad Forbes, Director, Forbes Marshall, has been elected as the Vice-President)

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