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IRDAI to move SC on SAT order against its official

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The insurance regulator is likely to contest an unprecedented appellate order seeking the ouster of one its members in a corruption case.

The decision comes following a recent order by the Securities Appellate Tribunal seeking removal of PJ Joseph, member, non-life, IRDAI, who had passed an order pertaining to the UK-based insurance brokerage, Atkins Special Risks.

The appellate body said that the order passed by Joseph amounts to ‘aiding and abetting corruption in the insurance business’ by the regulator 'that cannot be tolerated.'

A senior official associated with the development said that the regulatory body’s new chairman is likely to be appointed by the end of March, after which "we will move the highest court in April so that a decision could be out before the SC closes for summer vacations in mid-May."

Once, the Supreme Court closes for summer vacations, it will only resume on July 2.

The case

From 2002 to 2012, Atkins had provided international re-insurance cover to Jagson International, an off-shore drilling company.  Atkins has alleged, in its submission to SAT, that Jagson and its officials demanded a cut from the commission it received from 2010. Atkin says it declined. Post this, the UK company alleges, the reinsurance business was given to Marsh India Insurance Brokers.

The appellant alleged that detailed investigation by a globally reputed investigating firm showed some alleged kickbacks given by Marsh to Jagdish Gupta, Chairman of Jagson. It also filed a complaint with IRDAI (which was heard by P J Joseph), and the case was disposed of.

However, Marsh in a statement has denied any wrongdoing. It has also pointed out that SAT has not taken any view of the case.

SAT in its judgement stated that it has not expressed any opinion on the merits of the complaint filed by the appellant.

However, the appellate body asked IRDAI to pass a fresh order on a case involving alleged financial irregularities in awarding insurance broker contract to a broking firm. It also directed IRDAI to entrust the matter to a ‘competent officer other than P J Joseph, Member (non-life)’.

There have also been demands to have an insurance expert on the SAT to look into the sectors matters. Currently, it does not have any.

Ownership of banks should not matter, its all about ethics, says SBI chief

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Post the disclosure of the Nirav Modi scam, there have been heated debates within the banking sector on whether the government should privatise public sector banks (PSB). While many industry experts are in favour of privatisation of PSBs, like Uday Kotak who has said that there is no need for so many state-run banks, State Bank of India chief, Rajnish Kumar says otherwise.

Talking on the subject of ownership and whether privatisation of banks would help solve the problem of non performing assets (NPAs) at News18 Network's Rising India Summit, he had said that ownership of a bank should not matter – whether private or public – and that it is all about ethics.

Kumar claimed that the masses have a lot to thank public sector banks for. "Firstly, when you drive on a highway, enter an airport or feel good about the power situation, do not forget the bank. Let us understand the importance of public sector banks," said Kumar.

In an earlier interview to Economic Times, the SBI chairman had said that state-run banks play a definite role for the betterment of society which the private sector would not be willing to do. “There is a huge socio-economic agenda which only public sector banks cater to,’’ said Kumar.

According to him, what people need to keep in mind when talking about privatisation is that it is the government ownership that is saving the day. If it were a private bank, the government would have to step in to bail it out, and this is applicable across the world.

“People who speak about privatisation are missing the point. I am not advocating private or public sector banks or which model is better. All I am saying is that whatever the structure, there will be issues,” he noted.

PNB scam case: Govt questions why it should tell Supreme Court about status of probe

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New Delhi: The central government on Friday resisted monitoring of investigation by the Supreme Court in the Punjab National Bank (PNB) loan fraud case allegedly involving Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi, saying there should not be any "parallel inquiry".

Attorney General KK Venugopal opposed a suggestion mooted by the top court that the government should submit a stays report on investigation in a sealed cover envelope.

Venugopal told a bench headed by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra that there is no justification to call upon the investigating agencies to show what they are doing.

"Is there any justification for anyone to come to this court by filing a PIL and say the Court should be informed about the status of investigation? There cannot be a parallel inquiry and parallel investigation by the courts," said the AG.

He added such orders were being passed frequently by courts now but this course will bring the morale down of the investigating agencies.

"In principle what is the justification for any court, not only this court, to call upon the government and seek such reports as if a parallel inquiry in going on? Why should a petition be entertained at all unless there is something wrong to be shown by the petitioner? I oppose such plea on the ground of principle," Venugopal told the bench, also comprising AM Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud.

But advocate JP Dhanda, appearing for the PIL, claimed that his petition had not asked for monitoring of the investigation by the court at all.

The court finally adjourned the matter to April 9 after it took umbrage at a statement by Dhanda that AG has perhaps not gone through his petition.

"We won't hear it today now. Nobody can ask Attorney General, who is a constitutional office bearer whether he has read a petition or not. Meet law with law. Such statements are unacceptable to us," remarked the bench, deferring the matter.

PIL by advocate Vineet Dhanda has sought direction to the Centre to ensure PNB scam accused Nirav Modi is brought back to India within two months, apart from the issuance of fresh guidelines on grant of big loans. 

Juxtaposing poor farmers' inability to repay agricultural loans with the recent Rs 11,300 crore PNB fraud, the PIL has sought intervention of the Supreme Court to protect the people's rights.

Wholesale inflation eases to 7-month low of 2.48% in February

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Inflation based on wholesale prices eased to a seven-month low of 2.48 per cent in February on cheaper food articles, including vegetables.

On the basis of Wholesale Price Index (WPI), inflation was 2.84 per cent in January and 5.51 per cent in February 2017.

WPI inflation at 2.48 per cent in February is the lowest in seven months. The previous low level was recorded in July at 1.88 per cent.

According to a government data released today, inflation in food articles slowed to 0.88 per cent in February from 3 per cent in the preceding month.

Inflation in vegetables softened with annual inflation at 15.26 per cent as against 40.77 per cent in January.

While the rate of price rise in onion slowed, it increased in the case of another kitchen essential, potato.

Inflation in pulses remained in the negative zone at (-)24.51 per cent and so in cereals and wheat. WPI inflation in protein rich items like egg, fish and meat too was in the negative zone.

As per the data, inflation in 'fuel and power' segment too eased to 3.81 per cent in February compared to 4.08 per cent in the previous month.

The data also showed that the rate of price rise in manufactured items was higher compared to January.

As per the data of Central Statistics Office (CSO), retail inflation measured in term of Consumer Price Index had dropped to a four-month low of 4.44 per cent in February on cheaper food articles and lower cost for fuel.

FY'19 may miss RBI rate cuts as inflation shows rising trend: Report

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CPI inflation is expected to rise over the next few months and average close to 4.7 per cent in 2018-19, driving Reserve Bank to keep key policy rates on hold in the coming financial year, says a report.

According to Swiss brokerage firm UBS, the headline CPI inflation may average close to 4.7 per cent in 2018-19 (as against 3.6 per cent estimated in 2017-18).

"In our base case, we still expect the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) to keep rates on hold in 2018-19," the report authored by Tanvee Gupta Jain, Economist at UBS Securities India, said.

Jain however noted that there might be a pre-emptive 50 bps hike over the next 12 months to ensure macro stability.

As per the report, the key risks to the base case CPI inflation forecast include higher minimum support prices (MSPs), global crude oil prices strengthening further and populist spending in the run-up to 2019 general election.

If these risks materialise, "we do not rule out a pre-emptive 50 bps hike over the next 12 months to ensure macro stability risks are contained," Jain added.

As per Central Statistics Office (CSO) data, retail inflation measured in term of Consumer Price Index fell to a four-month low of 4.44 per cent in February on cheaper food articles and lower cost for fuel.

Retail inflation was 5.07 per cent in January. In February 2017, however, it was 3.65 per cent.

Following the easing of retail inflation in February, there is industry clamour for a rate cut by RBI next month to maintain growth momentum.

The central bank's next monetary policy review is scheduled for April 5. It had kept the policy rate unchanged in its February meeting on fears of inflation.

Stock market-Research-Report-12-3-2018

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Topic :- Share Market Closing Note

The Sensex was up 610.80 points or 1.83% at 33917.94, and the Nifty up 194.50 points or 1.90% at 10421.40.

About 1380 shares have advanced, 1341 shares declined, and 210 shares are unchanged.


Topic :- Time:3.05 PM

Nifty spot close above 10420 will result in some quick upmove in coming trading sessions and close below above mentioned level will result in some sluggish movement. Avoid open positions for tomorrow.


Topic :- Time:2.30 PM

GOLD Trading View:

GOLD is trading at 30360. It will find its immediate support at 30280 level. If it manages to hold above 30280 level then it is likely to show some quick upmove and is expected to test 30480-30500 levels quite soon. Buy on every decline till it holds above 30280 level is recommended in it.


Topic :- Time:2.05 PM

Just In:

Nifty PSU Bank hits fresh 19-month low; 8 banks hit respective 5-year lows


Topic :- Time:2.00 PM

Nifty spot is trading at 10358. If it manages to trade and sustain above 10365 level then expect some upmove and if it breaks and trade below 10340 level then some profit booking can be seen in the market. As nifty is trading in critical zone so one should avoid agressive trading. Though nifty is up but sentiments are still not supporting with new scams in banking getting highlighted daily.


Topic :- Time:1.45 PM

Just In:

Unitech properties , not under litigation, to be auctioned by Supreme Court to refund home buyers.


Topic :- Time:1.40 PM

I-T dept uncovers Rs 5,200-cr fake diamond receipts; Mehul Choksi, Nirav Modi may be party to scam:

The Income Tax department has busted an about Rs 5,200-crore scam of fake receipts, which were used to inflate books and avail loans.

According to sources, Mehul Choksi and Nirav Modi  - who are at the centre of the Punjab National Bank fraud - also used these fake receipts to show fictitious revenue turnover in their books.

Two weeks ago, the Income Tax (I-T) department raided a company based in the Bharat Diamond Bourse, in Mumbais Bandra Kurla Complex in connection to the scam. This company allegedly issued the fake receipts.

Bharat Diamond Bourse is home to about 2,500 diamond traders.

A senior official of the I-T department told Moneycontrol, There are some businesses that issue sales and purchase invoices, and charge 1 percent of the total value as commission. These invoices are used to inflate revenue in the books. These invoices are used to draw pre and post shipment credit from banks.

Another source in the investigation agency added: Department has found that Mehul Choksi and Nirav Modi used fake receipts for inflating volumes in their books. Inflated books helped them take larger amount of loan from banks.

These fake receipts, issued between 2011 and 2016, could be worth about Rs 5,200 crore.

An executive from a listed diamond company explained the modus operandi. In diamond market, there are about 10-12 companies that actively use fake receipts.

These companies issue fake invoices for sales and purchase, without any movement of inventory, for a commission of 1-2 percent. These invoices are used to inflate the sales, and draw higher credit limits from the banks, against receivables. These companies offer local as well as export bills, from their entities based in overseas locations such as Hong Kong, Dubai and Singapore.

Another executive from the industry pointed out that a similar investigation was conducted about two years ago, but was dropped due to immense political pressure.


Topic :- Time:1.30 PM

COPPER Trading View:

COPPER is trading at 450.80. If it breaks and trade below 450 level then expect some further decline in it and above 451.50-452 levels some upmove can be seen however 454-454.50 levels to be watched out for as immediate resistance.


Topic :- Time:1.00 PM

Nifty is trading absolutely flat. Nifty spot if manages to trade and sustain abvoe 10340 level then expect some upmove and below 10300 level some profit booking can follow in the market. Avoid big trades and trade with stoploss.


Topic :- Time:11.30 AM

News Wrap Up:

1. Nifty reclaims 10,300 levels; ITC, Tata Steel key gainers

2. Modi govt may give homebuyers a big say in its bankruptcy fight

3. L&T construction arm bags orders worth Rs 2,597 cr

4. Govt in a fix over Rs 34,000-crore missing GST

5. Ministerial committee may pave way for ArcelorMittals Essar Steel bid

6. Enforcement Directorate, SFIO lens on Rs 54-bn loans to Usha Martin group

7. Andhra Bank hits 14-yr low as ED files chargesheet against ex-bank official

8. Deutsche Bank values asset management at up to 7.2 billion euros in IPO

9. PNB fraud case: RBI must be kept out of the mud slinging

10. Signed biggest deal with Safran Group worth $12.5 bn: SpiceJet


Topic :- Time:11.00 AM

Nifty spot is trading at 10329. If it manages to trade and sustain above 10340-10350 levels only then quick upmove is expected in the market and if it breaks and trade below 10310-10300 levels then some profit booking can be seen in Nifty.


Topic :- Time:10.30 AM

After positive opening nifty is still trading in positive zone but little flat. Nifty spot if manages to trade and sustain above 10340 level then expect some further upmove in the market and if it breaks and trade below 10310-10300 levels then some profit booking can be seen in the market.


Topic :- Nifty Opening Note

Indian Stock Market Trading View For 11 March,2018:

Volatility to continue in the market with sell on rise approach in this week. Global cues to be eyed.

Nifty spot if manages to trade and sustain above 10260 level then expect some upmove and if it breaks and trade below 10180 level then some profit booking can be seen in the market. Please note this is just opening view and should not be considered as the view for the whole day.

Indian banking in 'stasis'; need efficient fin system: Uday Kotak

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The Indian banking system is in "stasis" and we need an efficient financial system which does not get impacted frequently, banker Uday Kotak said today.

In the remarks that come amid the discovery of the nearly Rs 13,000-crore scam at Punjab National Bank scam, one of the biggest in the Indian banking history, Kotak also said there is a case for trimming the number of state-run lenders.

"We can't be bogged down every few years, from time-to-time, where the system gets into a stasis like it is today," the executive vice chairman and managing director of Kotak Mahindra Bank said at the India Today Conclave here.

There was no explicit mention of the scam at PNB allegedly involving gems and jewellery players Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi by Kotak, who maintained that he does not wish to get into any "political debate".

"We frankly need fewer public sector banks which may happen through mergers and shrinkage," he said.

At present, there are 20 entities, including largest lender State Bank of India, which are run by the government and account for nearly 70 per cent of the assets in the system. Almost all of them are affected by high levels of non-performing assets (NPAs).

Kotak has grown his bank to be the fourth largest in the private sector space by merging with ING Vysya Bank. The lender recently raised Rs 5,500 crore in core capital for various purposes including the possibilities of inorganic growth.

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