BQuick On Nov. 28: Top 10 Stories In Under 10 Minutes
Vehicles pass a police officer at the India Gate monument (Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg)  

BQuick On Nov. 28: Top 10 Stories In Under 10 Minutes

This is a roundup of the day’s stories in brief.

1. Uddhav Thackeray Sworn In As Maharashtra’s 19th CM

Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray has been sworn-in as Maharashtra’s 19th chief minister amid much fanfare at Shivaji Park in Dadar, Mumbai.

  • Chhagan Bhujbal, Jayant Patil (both from the Nationalist Congress Party), Balasaheb Thorat and Nitin Raut (both from the Congress), Eknath Shinde and Subhash Desai (both from the Shiv Sena) took oath along with Thackeray.
  • The ceremony was attended by high profile names including industrialists Mukesh Ambani and Kumar Mangalam Birla.
  • Earlier in the day, leaders of the Maha Vikas Aghadi, said the new government would waive farmers' loans and ensure 80 percent quota in jobs to the local youth.
  • The common minimum programme promises setting up of 'one rupee clinics' across the state which will provide basic health screening to people, as well as tenements measuring 500 square feet carpet area free of cost to eligible slum dwellers under the slum rehabilitation programme instead of current 300 sq ft tenements.

Get latest updates on the Maharashtra government formation here.

2. Six-Member Panel To Find Aditya Puri's Successor

India largest private sector bank HDFC Bank Ltd. said it has formed a six-member committee to find a successor to Managing Director Aditya Puri who is set to retire in October next year.

  • HDFC Bank is on a global search to find a successor to Founder Chief Executive Officer Aditya Puri, as he would turn 70 next year.
  • The search committee comprises Shyamala Gopinath, Sanjiv Sachar, MD Ranganath, Sandeep Parekh, Srikanth Nadhamuni and Keki Mistry.

Puri will act as an adviser to the search committee.

Also read: Five Things The SBI Cards IPO Prospectus Tells Us About The Payments Industry

3. Sensex Closes At Fresh Record

Indian equity benchmarks ended higher on F&O expiry day, led by the gains in Reliance Industries Ltd. and ICICI Bank Ltd.

  • The S&P BSE Sensex and the NSE Nifty 50 closed at all-time high levels for the second day in a row.
  • The 31-share index rose 0.27 percent or 109.56 points to end at 41,130.
  • The NSE Nifty 50 rose 0.42 percent to close at 12,151.15.
  • The broader markets represented by the NSE Nifty 500 Index rose 0.55 percent.
  • The Nifty index’s futures and options series gained for the third straight month in November.
  • In November futures series, Nifty rose 2.3 percent and Nifty Bank rose 6.8 percent.
  • Nine out of 11 sectoral gauges compiled by NSE ended higher.

Follow the day’s trading action here.

A slowing economy hasn’t stopped India’s benchmark equity index from climbing to a series of records this year, but this divergence may have run its course, according to BNP Paribas.

And BNP isn’t the only. Credit Suisse sees meaningful cuts to EPS estimates in FY21.

BQuick On Nov. 28: Top 10 Stories In Under 10 Minutes

Stocks slipped along with U.S. equity futures after President Donald Trump signed a bill backing Hong Kong protesters, raising concerns about the prospects for an interim trade deal between the world’s two largest economies.

  • U .S. shares, bonds are shut for Thanksgiving holiday
  • The pound held Wednesday’s gain against the dollar after a poll suggested the U.K. election will deliver a large majority for the Conservative Party
  • West Texas Intermediate crude fell 0.4% to $57.88 a barrel.

Get your daily fix of global markets here.

4. RIL Denies Talks To Sell News Business To Times Group

Billionaire Mukesh Ambani is in talks to sell his news media assets to India’s Times Group, as Asia’s richest man plans to unload a business that’s been losing money, people familiar with the matter told Bloomberg News.

  • Bennett Coleman & Co., the publisher of the Times of India, is looking to hire advisers for due diligence on the news properties of Ambani’s Network18 Media & Investments Ltd., the people said, asking not to be named as the discussions are private.
  • Ambani is considering various options, ranging from an outright exit to a stake sale, one of the people said.
Reliance Industries firmly denies the story. The story is baseless and false.
RIL Statement 

Talks are at an early stage and may not result in a deal.

5. Sitharaman Seeks Additional Funds

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has sought the Parliament’s approval to spend Rs 21,246 crore for the year ending March 2020, over and above the budgeted expenditure for the period.

  • Out of the Rs 21,246 crore, Rs 18,995 crore would be the government’s net cash outgo, while Rs 2,249 crore would be matched by savings or unutilised spending of various government departments, according to the first batch of supplementary demand for grants tabled in the Parliament today.
  • About Rs 8,821 crore has been sought to be given to the Union territories of Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh after they were officially carved out of the Jammu and Kashmir state on Oct 31.
  • The amount is on account of the state’s share of taxes based on 14th Finance Commission’s recommendations and includes its share of net proceeds of taxes for November and December.

Here’s how the government plans to spend the rest of the additional funds.

6. What Night Lights Tell Us About India’s Economy

The Indian economy has weakened sharply over the past year. We know that from GDP data, from auto sales, from bank credit offtake and a whole host of other indicators tracked month-to-month and quarter-to-quarter. Many of these indicators tell you the story of the formal economy, at least in initial readings. What about the informal economy?

  • Over the years, statisticians have continued to look out for additional indicators that are accurate, high frequency, comprehensive and hard to manipulate.
  • Many believe that data on night lights is one such indicator that gives an indication on economy activity.
  • Night light intensity in India was at the lowest in two years during the September quarter. Sequentially, intensity declined 34 percent.

But how reliable is night lights data as one source of judging economic activity along with others?

7. Why Bad Loan Divergence Disclosures Continue

Four years after the Reserve Bank of India conducted an asset quality review to flush out bad loans not appropriately classified as non performing assets, the problem of under-reporting has not completely gone away.

  • At least eight banks have reported divergence in their assessment of gross NPAs versus that of the regulator. These lenders have also reported provision levels below the regulatory requirement.
  • According to disclosures made to stock exchanges, these eight banks have reported a cumulative divergence of Rs 9,363 crore in bad loan reporting.
  • To be sure, the extent of divergence as a percentage of reported bad loans was low for most banks. Only Yes Bank reported a divergence of more than 15 percent of the originally reported bad loans.
  • According to Dhananjay Sinha, head strategist and chief economist at IDFC Securities, the variation in what the RBI considers adequate provisioning and what the bank has made is a difference in judgment.

Fear of increased glare from tax authorities could also be another factor.

8. First Commercial Paper Listing In India

Aditya Birla Finance Ltd. became the first company to list a commercial paper on the National Stock Exchange.

  • The paper will mature in February next year.
  • The move will help commercial paper issuers make appropriate disclosures on a continuous basis and will lead to deepening of the debt markets in the country, the company’s statement said.
  • The debt instrument issued by Aditya Birla Capital Ltd.’s lending arm is expected to mature on Feb. 7, 2020, the statement said.

The move comes just a day after BSE and NSE came out with a framework for listing of commercial papers.

9. The Death Of The Supreme Court Of Global Trade

In two weeks from now, the global body that’s the final arbiter on trade disputes will be defunct.

  • Why should its demise matter?
  • How do countries like India resolve their international disputes?
  • How should its judges interpret disputed terms in a WTO treaty?

Trade law expert Raj Bhala explains how things got here, and what happens next.

10. Manchester City To Buy Majority Stake In ISL Club Mumbai City FC

English Premier League champions Manchester City's parent is making an Indian foray as it acquired a majority stake in Indian Super League franchise Mumbai City FC.

  • The City Football Group, controlled by Abu Dhabi’s royal family, will bought 65 percent stake in Mumbai City FC from actor Ranbir Kapoor and Bimal Parekh.
  • Kapoor and Parekh will continue to retain the remaining 35 percent stake.
  • The Premier League club tweeted that CFG was delighted to welcome the Indian club to its “family of clubs”.
  • Other clubs in the CFG stable include New York City, Melbourne City, Yokohama F. Marinos in Japan and Girona FC in Spain.

The City Football Group is already one of the most valued sporting organisations in the world.

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