Govt May Ease FDI Norms in Single Brand Retail, Income Tax Return Filing Last Date

Markets react positively to RBI’s capital transfer to government. Deadline for filing income tax returns ends on 31st August, 2019. Bimal Jalan report warns RBI should keep equities at appropriate level. Govt to consider easing FDI norms in single brand retail, digital media today. Toyota and Suzuki enter capital alliance to jointly develop futuristic technology. Hotstar is the most preferred streaming platform in India, followed by Amazon Prime Video and Netflix. 55% of Indians prefer OTT to DTH. Purdue Pharma, the company blamed for fueling US opioid crisis, offers to settle lawsuits for $10bn-$12bn. US is about to flood the market with even more oil.

 

Moving on to the top Business news of the day:

 

 RBI 
 
Markets react positively to RBI’s capital transfer to government. Bimal Jalan report warns RBI should keep equities at appropriate level. 
 
 
Rupee Rises: The RBI has agreed to part with a portion of its accumulated reserves, transferring INR1,76,051cr to the government. Markets reacted positively to the development and the Rupee posted its biggest single-day gain in five months.
 
 
Rainy Day Funds: The RBI’s balance sheet should be strong enough to support and recapitalise banks if there is a financial crisis, the report of the Bimal Jalan-headed committee to review the economic capital framework (ECF) said. The committee said the Central Bank should maintain its equity at an appropriate level so that if the country faces a financial predicament it will have ample financial resources to rely on.
 
 
Ethically Obligated: This was money the Central Bank built up over several years, meant to be touched only on the occasion of a financial crisis. It is imperative that the government utilises these rainy day funds judiciously and prudently. Anything less will be morally and ethically reckless.
 
 
 TAXES 

Deadline for filing income tax returns ends on 31st August, 2019. 
 
 
Time's Up!: Following a month of extension, the deadline for filing income tax (IT) returns ends in three days on 31st August, 2019. 
 
 
Filing the return after the due date will incur penalties ranging from INR5,000 to INR10,000. 
 
 
Here are 10 things to know as you file your IT return. 
 
 
A Lending Hand: Here’s a guide to help you file your returns smoothly.
 
 
 
 COMPANIES 

Govt to consider easing FDI norms in single brand retail, digital media today. Toyota and Suzuki enter capital alliance to jointly develop futuristic technology. 
 
 
“Relaxi Taxi”: In a bid to attract more foreign players, the Union Cabinet is considering relaxing foreign direct investment (FDI) norms in several sectors, including single-brand retail, digital media, coal mining and contract manufacturing.
 
 
The government may approve proposal to allow 100% FDI in contract manufacturing. It may also come out with a clarification on applicability of the FDI policy on the digital media sector.
 
 
More on this here.
 
 
Deepening Ties: Strengthening their existing partnership that goes back to 2016, Japanese vehicle manufacturers Toyota and Suzuki have announced ‘capital alliance’ for equity investment in each other. 
 
 
As part of the agreement, Toyota will purchase 4.94% shares of Suzuki worth 96 billion Japanese yen, while Suzuki will buy shares worth 48 billion yen in Toyota.
 
 
Apart from manufacturing electric and hybrid models, both companies will jointly develop autonomous driving technology.
 
 
 
 STREAMING 

Hotstar is the most preferred streaming platform in India, followed by Amazon Prime Video and Netflix. 55% of Indians prefer OTT to DTH.
 
 
The Hottest Star: Among Indians who stream, Hotstar is reportedly the most-preferred platform, followed by Amazon Prime and Netflix.
 
 
According to a recent survey by app distribution platform MoMagic, 41% of respondents said Hotstar was their most-preferred OTT platform while 26% voted for Amazon Prime Video and 9% for Netflix. 
 
 
The numbers shouldn’t be surprising given that Hotstar boasts over 300mn subscribers - much higher than Prime and Netflix’s 13mn and 11mn.
 
 
Out With the Old, In With the New: In the same survey, 85% respondents said they had watched at least one of the major OTTs in the last six months and 55% said they preferred OTT to DTH services. Only 41% said they still prefer DTH.
 
 
As more and more Indians come online, streaming platforms are increasing in popularity – at the expense of traditional cable networks.
 
 
 US 

Purdue Pharma, the company blamed for fueling US opioid crisis, offers to settle lawsuits for $10bn-$12bn. US is about to flood the market with even more oil.
 

Crisis Update: Purdue Pharma, the company blamed for fueling the opioid crisis in the US, has offered to settle 2,000+ lawsuits for $10bn-$12bn. The company, owned by the multi-billionaire Sackler family, has been blamed for enabling the opioid crisis, which has cost 400,000+ lives in the US in the last two decades.

 
Well, Oil Be Damned: The global oil market is more than saturated. And the US is about to flood it with a lot more oil. The US is already the world’s largest oil producer, having doubled its production in the last decade to 12.3mn barrels per day. Now, improved infrastructure and new pipelines are expected to carry more oil to the coast to be exported to the world at large.
 
 
But the world is already over-supplied with oil and prices are already low. More US exports could further curb prices, which are already affected by low demand.
 
 
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