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My Money

Rupee trips from 2-wk high; closes down 6 paise vs dollar

The rupee today retreated from two- week high levels against the US currency and ended lower by 6 paise at 64.59 on fresh bouts of dollar demand amid Fed rate hike rhetoric.
Forex market sentiment was hit by hawkish remarks from a Fed official who advocated a rate hike this year.
Despite a strong start, the home currency succumbed to intense dollar pressure in late afternoon deals amid firming greenback overseas trend.

Investment options to beat dipping interest rates

It’s a hard time for many as interest rates continue to fall. The government has again to cut interest rates on small savings schemes like public provident fund, senior citizen savings scheme and Sukanya Samriddhi by 10 basis points for this quarter. Banks too have been cutting fixed deposit rates over the last two years. In the last one year, banks have cut deposit rates by more than 150 basis points, now fetching below 7 per cent per annum.

Use tax efficient choices to counter falling interest rates

Fixed deposit interest rates in leading banks have fallen below the 7 per cent mark. This means that if one were in the highest tax bracket, the post tax returns would be below the 5 per cent mark. If you were a fixed deposit investor and your deposit is coming up for renewal, what are the options that one can pursue? The interest rate on small savings schemes has been further reduced for the July to September period. The first temptation is to invest into the equity market, despite the strong market performance increasing the risk for a new entrant.

GST rollout & rupee appreciation drag

Positive outlook
But keep an eye on GST, non performing assets and US Fed action on interest rate
What does the economy look like at the half-way mark in calendar year 2017? A review of the Indian economy by Care Ratings reveals a mixed picture with hopes for favourable prospects ahead

Black gold: Tax hike may boost illegal bullion, jewellery sales

A hike in taxes on gold sales in India could stoke under-the-counter bu­y­ing and drive up appetite for precious metal smuggled into the country, where millions of people store big chunks of their wealth in bullion and jewellery.
As part of a new nationwide sales tax regime that kicked in on July 1, the goods and services tax (GST) on gold has jumped to 3 per cent from 1.2 per cent previously, with traders and buyers saying the move will likely force more transactions into the black market.

ICICI Prudential Life to take over Sahara Life Insurance

ICICI Prudential Life Insurance, India’s largest private life insurer, would take over peer Sahara India Life Insurance Company, headquartered in Lucknow.
The insurance regulator, Irdai, had taken over Sahara India Life last month on charges that “it is acting in a manner likely to be prejudicial to the interests of holders of life insurance policies.”

RBI to issue Rs 200 notes in coming months

The Reserve Bank is expected to introduce Rs 200 notes in the coming months to ease pressure on lower-denomination currencies that are in short supply.
The new notes of Rs 200 should be out before the end of 2017 and will greatly help in narrowing the demand and supply gap in smaller-denomination currency bills, sources said.
They also said that there is no immediate plan to re- introduce Rs 1,000 notes.
Last year in November, the government had demonetized the old 500 and 1,000 rupee notes.

SBI, HDFC Bank, BoB cut base rates by 10 bps

State Bank of India (SBI) has cut its base rate by 10 basis points to 9 per cent, effective July 1. This will benefit its existing home loan borrowers and corporate customers. Other top lenders HDFC Bank and Bank of Baroda also announced reduction in their base rates.

Small savers may turn to stocks, gold

The government has reduced interest on small savings schemes by 10 basis points for the July-September 2017 quarter, a move that may force savers to look at alternative investment options like stocks, gold and real estate.
The 0.1 per cent reduction in interest rates applies to Public Provident Fund (PPF) and National Savings Certificate (NSC) for a five-year deposit. Interest rates on government schemes such as Kisan Vikas Patra and Sukanya Samruddhi have also been revised downwards by 10 basis points.

Gold jewellery export dips 47%

After the government started investigations into the export of 24-carat jewellery as a probable mode of round-tripping and misuse of bank funds, shipment of gold jewellery from special economic zones (SEZs) and export processing zones (EPZs) has dropped significantly, while the export of gold medallion and coins has gone up.

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