Current Affairs Economy & Banking

  Vreedhi Financial Services (VFS) has secured a non-banking finance company licence from the Reserve Bank of India. It’s objective is to provide credit and other services to micro-enterprises operating in tier two-three cities and small towns. The company will create a digital lending model by the next financial year. It will address the gap between the addressable and viable credit in the micro-enterprises space which is $123 billion as per the study conducted by the International Finance Corporation (IFC).
Source: The Economic Times

  SBI Card announced the launch of ‘SBI Card Pay’, a feature which allows contactless payment using mobile phones at PoS terminals. Using SBI Card Pay, customers can make contactless payments at near field communication (NFC) enabled point of sale terminals with just one tap of their mobiles, without using the physical credit card or entering any PIN. SBI Card Pay is a payment feature based on Host Card Emulation (HCE) technology for faster, convenient and more secure card payments using mobile phones.
Source: The Times of India

  The Department of Post announced that it has launched mobile banking for its savings account customers. The facility will be available all the post office savings account holders of the CBS (core banking solutions) post offices. The launch of the mobile banking facility comes almost a year after the Department of Post launched Internet banking facility for its savings account holders.
Source: The Economic Times

  ICICI Bank has launched a fixed deposit scheme called FD Health, that comes with an in-built critical insurance policy. The FD Health – Critical illness Cover will be provided to only the primary holder of the FD account. Anyone in the age bracket of 18-50 years, gets this complimentary insurance cover for a year on 33 critical illnesses. For the first year, free of cost insurance cover will be provided which can be renewed later. The new FD scheme from ICICI bank offers a complimentary critical illness cover of Rs. 1 lakh from ICICI Lombard General Insurance Company on opening an FD of Rs. 2 lakh to Rs. 3 lakh for a tenure of at least two years. The critical illness cover will be available on Cumulative FDs opened for a period of a minimum of 2 years.
Source: The Indian Express

   Life Insurance Council has decided to launch the Indian life insurance industry’s first joint mass media campaign with the slogan ‘Sabse Pehle Life Insurance’. The slogan will encourage Indian households to opt for adequate life insurance cover as the fundamental necessity in their lives. The life insurance council’s campaign represents joint efforts of all 24 Indian life insurance companies who are working towards creating a common narrative aimed at increasing life insurance awareness in the country.
Source: The Hindu

  Moody, the rating agency has lowered its 2019-20 GDP growth forecast for India to 5.8% from 6.2%. It stated that the Indian economy is experiencing a pronounced slowdown partly due to long-lasting factors.
Source: The Live Mint

  The Reserve Bank of India has given the go-ahead to the Kerala government to amalgamate 13 district cooperative banks (DCBs) with the Kerala State Cooperative Bank to form the proposed “Kerala Bank”. Except the Malappuram District Cooperative Bank, all district banks had approved the scheme of amalgamation proposed by the State government at their respective general body meetings. Now, the government have to complete the stipulations laid for merger and submit a compliance report to the apex bank before March 31, 2020. RBI also insisted that the State government would have to consistently infuse additional capital and also put in place a well-defined governance structure by amending the KSCS Act.
Source: The Hindu

  UCO Bank has launched three new digital products called, UCash, Digilocker and an app in Kolkata, West Bengal. A new current account facility has also been launched by the bank. UCash enables customers to withdraw money from ATMs through mobile banking without using a debit card. Digilocker aims to eliminate the use of physical documents and enables sharing of verified electronic documents. The third product, the new mobile app, integrates four existing apps of the bank – UCO Mbanking, UCO UPI, UCO Mpassbook and UCO Secure- in a single interface.
Source: The Business Standard

  Axis Bank, India’s third-largest private sector bank has launched the  ‘Express FD’, a digital fixed deposit (FD) product that allows a customer to open an FD account in 3 minutes through the digital mode without opening a savings account with the bank. ‘Express FD’ offers attractive interest rates, zero issuance fees and no penalty on pre-mature withdrawal of up to 25% of the amount, the bank said. A customer can open an Express FD account by investing a minimum Rs 5,000 up to Rs 90,000, for a tenure of 6 to 12 months.
Source: The Indian Express

  The State Bank of India opened its Melbourne office and becoming the first Indian bank to have a branch in the Australian state of Victoria. The Melbourne office will assist the growing trade and investment relations between Victoria and India and is the outcome of the state’s 10-year India Strategy. This investment by India’s largest commercial bank is a testament to our thriving financial services sector and our highly skilled workforce.
Source: The Economic Times


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