Aadhaar-PAN Linking Mandatory for Filing IT Return, OPEC Seeks to Formalise Agreement with Russia, Canadian Crypto Exchange CEO Dies, Access to Over $250m Lost et al.

Aadhaar-PAN linking mandatory for filing income tax return. RBI to conduct first half-yearly audit. NITI Aayog pushes for rate cut.  
OPEC seeks to formalise agreement with Russia. Canadian cryptocurrency exchange CEO dies; access to over $250m of cryptocurrencies lost.

 

Now to Today's Top Business News Stories in Our End Of Day Wrap Up:

 

RBI

RBI to conduct first half-yearly audit. NITI Aayog pushes for rate cut. Banks seek deferment in implementation of floating rate lending regime.

RBI is set to conduct its first half-yearly audit for the July-December, 2018 period to determine the amount of interim dividend it can issue to the Central Government.
 

Though a concurrent audit of its accounts is done on a quarterly basis, this is the first time a board-level statutory audit of the RBI is being conducted.
 

If You Recall: RBI’s surplus reserves have been a perennial bone of contention between the Central Bank and the Government. A Committee headed by former RBI Governor Bimal Jalan was set up in December to assess RBI’s Economic Capital Framework. 
 

RBI kicked off its bi-monthly monetary policy review yesterday. Here are some popular expectations.
 

Get the Engines Firing: As per Rajiv Kumar, Vice-Chairman of government’s policy think tank, NITI Aayog, this is the right time for RBI to think about a rate cut - reduce policy rates by a quarter percentage point and switch to a neutral stance to boost investment. 

Please Hold The Line: Banks have requested RBI to delay implementation of the new floating rate lending regime, which is linked to one of the four RBI-prescribed external benchmarks, and expected to come into effect from April 1, 2019 on back of fear of an adverse impact on their net interest margins, already hit by increasing NPAs and attendant provisions.

 

OIL

OPEC seeks to formalise agreement with Russia.
 

Saudi Arabia and its Persian Gulf allies are backing a formal partnership with a 10-nation group led by Russia to try to manage the global oil market.

 

What We Know: The development comes as the cartel faces pressure from US President Trump to keep oil prices low and as increased output from American shale producers reduces the influence that cartel members have over the market.

 

It’s an Oily Ground: The proposal would formalize the loose union between members of OPEC and the group led by Moscow including some former Soviet republics and other countries. The idea however faces opposition from Iran, which fears Moscow and Riyadh will dominate decision-making. 

 

A Roller Coaster Ride: Over the last six months, crude oil prices rocketed about 20%, plunged more than 40% and recovered 25%. Analysts warn that intense volatility could be the new normal in the oil market. Click here to know why. 

 

TECH

Snapchat shares surged. Apple’s Retail Chief quits. Spotify to acquire Gimlet Media.
 

Snapchat shares surged more than 20% on back of rising daily active users. The photo-messaging app reported a rise in daily active users to 186 million, beating expectations. 
 

Resignation + Appointment: Apple’s Retail Chief who expanded presence to 506 locations quits after five years on the job. Current VP of People, Deirdre O’Brien to take on expanded role as senior vice president of Retail + People. 
 

Listen In: Music-streaming platform Spotify is in advanced talks to buy digital media company and podcast network, Gimlet Media. If the deal goes through, it would mark the biggest podcast industry acquisition to date by a long mile. Read more here.

 

CRYPTO

Canadian cryptocurrency exchange CEO dies; access to over $250m of cryptocurrencies lost.



An Unusual Setup: Deceased QuadrigaCX CEO Gerry Cotten was the only person with the cryptographic keys to access $137m of cryptocurrencies kept in “cold” storage to mitigate the risk of hacks.


 
The company requested the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia for protection against creditors whom they own over $250m for 30 days, which was later granted.

 

RULES

Aadhaar-PAN linking mandatory for filing income tax return. Inconsistencies remain in GST anti-profiteering provisions.
 

Don’t Forget Your Aadhaar: SC has said that linkage of PAN with Aadhaar is mandatory for filing of Income Tax returns following an appeal filed by the Centre against a Delhi HC order allowing two persons to file IT returns for 2018-19 without linking their Aadhaar and PAN numbers.


 
Even after 25 orders been passed by the National Anti-Profiteering Authority, there continues to be inconsistency in its approach in dealing with the cases of alleged profiteering from GST rate cuts. Click here to know more.

 

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