ICICI Bank, India’s second-largest private sector lender, has launched a premium savings account ‘The ONE’, especially for salaried and self-employed customers. According to ICICI Bank, through ICICI Bank premium savings account, customers can opt for health and term life insurance covers, purchase of home with upto 50% waiver on processing fee for new home loans and zero processing fees on balance transfer of existing home loan. ICICI Bank premium savings account is available in two variants, Magnum and Titanium. The account will offer free unlimited transactions on ICICI Bank as well as Non–ICICI Bank ATMs in India.
India’s insurance regulator IRDAI has recommended installment payments for personal accident and certain benefit-based health insurance claims. The deferred payment system will help customers meet their medium to long-term medical and their family’s financial needs, a working group formed by the IRDAI said in a report. Though lump sum payment option will remain, policyholders can choose between monthly, quarterly, half-yearly or annual payments. If the policyholder dies during the payment period, the nominee can opt for the payment mode. Policyholders be allowed to switch between the deferred and lump-sum payment modes any number of times during the policy period.
Foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) have pulled out more than Rs 4,000 crore from the Indian capital markets so far in January, indicating their cautious approach. According to data available with the depositories, FPIs withdrew a net amount of Rs 3,987 crore from equities and a net sum of Rs 53 crore from the debt market, taking the total outflow to Rs 4,040 crore during January 1-18. FPIs had invested a collective net inflow of over Rs 17,000 crore in the Indian equity and debt markets during November and December while pulling out a staggering Rs 38,905 crore in October.
Jana Small Finance Bank is offering 9.75% p.a. interest on fixed deposits for its senior citizen customers, the bank said in a statement. The lender is offering a Jana Bankable Debit Card to its customers while opening a fixed deposit account, which includes welcome benefits worth Rs 15,000 on top brands. The offer starts from January 23 and will end on January 28.
Edelweiss Mutual Fund is launching a new fund offer (NFO) of a small-cap fund, the Edelweiss Small Cap Fund, with an added feature called Smart Trigger-enabled Plan (STeP). The Edelweiss Small Cap fund will invest at least 65% of the corpus in small-cap companies. The fund can also take an exposure of up to 35% in large-cap and mid-cap stocks or debt and money market instruments. Investors can either invest a lump sum in the NFO or through a regular SIP. However, these options would be bereft of the STeP benefit to make investments when the market declines.
The RBI has issued guidelines for tokenizations of debit/credit card transactions for enhancing the safety and security of payments. Tokenization will generate a unique 16-digit code, called a “token,” which will replace the actual card details. Instead of the card’s details, the token will facilitate payments at point of sale (POS) terminals, In-app purchases, e-wallets and quick response (QR) code payment systems. These payment platforms will not be able to read or save the original card details. The service would initially be used through only smartphones and tablets, though it may be expanded to other devices later.
A new form of OTP (one-time password) theft has robbed many IT employees of lakh of rupees in Bengaluru. A person posing as a bank employee calls the victim asking him to update or renew credit/debit cards. The unsuspecting victim provides the card number and CVV. The victim then receives a SMS on his phone. Such SMSes, apparently, are in encrypted form, and do not contain any legible text. However when the victims click on the links contained in the SMS, the incoming SMS is automatically diverted to the scamster’s phone, who then transfers the money using the OTP.
Mutual fund investments in the name of minors are opened as “on behalf of account” and operated by the minor’s guardian. The Guardian has to comply with all the KYC formalities. A folio opened in the name of a minor cannot have a joint holder or a nominee. The payment for the investment may be made from the guardian’s bank account or from a bank account in the name of the minor operated by the guardian. When the minor turns 18, an application has to be made to the mutual fund to update the new status along with KYC compliances.
John Bogle, who founded the Vanguard Group, now the world's biggest mutual fund firm, died on Wednesday at the age of 89. Bogle had been in frail health for years, surviving at least six heart attacks and receiving a heart transplant in 1996. The cause of death was cancer, said Bogle's assistant Michael Nolan. In 1976, Vanguard also introduced the first indexed fund for individual investors. Vanguard has some $5 trillion in assets under management (AUM), the bulk of it in index funds and exchange-traded funds (ETFs).
Payments banks was launched to serve the unbanked section by making banking services accessible. Payment banks are technology-driven, hence opening an account is easy. There is no charge for account opening or for non-maintenance of minimum balance. Payments bank can accept deposits not exceeding Rs 1 lakh per account, hence it minimises the security risk in the event of a banking fraud. However any transaction with a value above the maximum limit of Rs 1 lakh will get rejected. To avoid such problems, payments banks have partnered with commercial banks to facilitate sweep-in facility for customers by linking the accounts.
According to JM financial report, net inflows into equity mutual fund schemes were down 23% on a month-on-month basis in December 2018 at Rs 6,700 crore. "Unlike November 2018 when liquid mutual fund schemes witnessed strong inflows, liquid mutual fund schemes saw large outflows of Rs 1.5 trillion (Rs 1.5 lakh crore) in December 2018, while debt mutual fund schemes witnessed outflows worth Rs 3,400 crore in December 2018," the report said. However, inflows through the Systematic Investment Plan (SIP) were strong in December at Rs 8,020 crore.
Market regulator SEBI may soon tighten norms for liquid funds, the most popular mutual fund product among institutional investors with average assets under management (AUM) of over Rs 6 lakh crore. Proposals under consideration by SEBI for liquid schemes include mandatory minimum investments in short-term government bonds and stricter valuation norms. SEBI is also evaluating a proposal to introduce a lock-in period for investments in liquid funds but such a move could hamper investor interest. NAV of many liquid funds has been badly hit due to their exposure in IL&FS group which recently defaulted on payments to mutual funds.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley who is due to present the interim budget on February 1, may raise the individual income exemption limit to Rs 5 lakh, sources said. The government is not expected to make indirect tax policy changes and rationalisation of custom duties. The union budget 2018-19 would be the last full budget of the BJP-led NDA government before the 2019 general elections. This will be the sixth consecutive budget to be presented by Jaitley.
Most Non-convertible debentures (NCDs) offer lucrative returns with 9%-10.25% coupon rate. However, besides high returns, investment in NCDs should be guided by other important factors such as the credit rating of the issuing company, liquidity, investment tenure, and tax impact. A credit rating indicates the likelihood of the company defaulting on its interest and principal repayment. If the bonds are not well traded on stock exchanges, easy exit may become a challenge for investors not willing to hold till maturity. Investors in the highest tax bracket may earn only 6.4%-6.9% return post-tax, while for others it may fetch around 8.5%.
Investment in NPS or National Pension System available to both salaried and self-employed individuals, offers income tax deduction benefits of upto Rs 50,000 in Tier I NPS account in a financial year under Section 80CCD (1B) of the Income Tax Act. This deduction of Rs 50,000 is available over and above the Rs 1.5 lakh allowed under Section 80CCD (1) for investment towards NPS. In order to claim tax benefits, the subscriber can submit the transaction statement as an investment proof, according to the Central Recordkeeping Agency for NPS or the receipt of voluntary contribution from his online NPS account.