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Opening Bell 17 June | Govt readies action plan for the economy

LiveMint logoLiveMint 17-06-2014 R. Sree Ram

Mumbai: Asian markets are trading mixed. The deepening conflict in Iraq and gas dispute between Ukraine and Russia is making investors wary of equities, reports Reuters. The US has considered options for military action to support Iraq’s government, reports Reuters. According to the report, US and Iranian officials held talks to stabilize the region.

While investors are waiting for the violence to settle down, overnight US markets closed in the green. S&P 500 gained 0.08% to 1,937 after reports said industrial production increased more than forecast in May. Read the Bloomberg report.

In India,the tax administration and reforms commission headed by economist Parthasarathi Shome has called for a overhaul of the country’s tax administration, reports Mint. The panel has recommended large-scale structural changes and greater coordination in the functioning of both the direct and indirect tax arms of the government.

The recent decline in bad loan levels across many state-run banks doesn’t indicate that asset quality woes for the banking sector are over, Fitch Ratings Inc. warned. Total gross non-performing assets of India’s 40 listed banks stood at `2.42 trillion in the March quarter, as compared with `2.43 trillion in the preceding quarter, but about 36% higher compared with the year-ago period. Read the Mint report.

To encourage private sector participation in building roads, the government has revived a proposal that will make it easier for developers to sell their stakes in road projects, reports Mint. The roads ministry is considering allowing developers to sell their stakes without forming a new special purpose vehicle.

The aviation ministry has drawn up a plan to push infrastructure development, e-governance and air connectivity during the first 100 days of the new government, reports Mint. Last fortnight the ministry followed up on a string of consultations to hand over a list of over a dozen action points to the Prime Minister’s Office.

Losses on sale of diesel have dipped to a record low of `1.62 per litre, raising the prospect of deregulation of the nation’s most consumed fuel, reports PTI. If the rupee continues to strengthen and monthly price increases of upto 50 paisa a litre are allowed, diesel prices will be decontrolled by September, the report adds.

Infosys Ltd has created a new portfolio of managing alliances with software product majors Oracle, IBM, Salesforce and SAP, reports The Economic Times. According to the report, one of the vice presidents would steer the company’s global alliances.

Lupin Ltd is seeking to build its business in Europe by acquiring generics manufacturers for as much as $1 billion, reports Bloomberg. Lupin is looking for companies with capabilities in complex generics like inhalation products and injectables, dermatology products, and biosimilar drugs, the report adds.

Reliance Communications Ltd is tying up with Reliance Industries Ltd promoted Reliance Jio for a pan-India intra-circle agreement, reports Business Standard. Currently, their alliance is restricted to sharing towers and fibre-optic network.

Tesco, in partnership with Trent Ltd, is working on opening six to eight new stores in Maharashtra and Karnataka, reports Business Standard. Tesco is the only foreign retailer to have made a proposal for multi-brand since the segment was opened to foreign investment, the report says.

Britannia Industries Ltd’s marketing head Anuradha Narasimhan has resigned from the company to join a consumer goods start-up, reports Mint. The departure of Narasimhan comes as a surprise as she had been promoted to vice-president, marketing, barely two months ago.

Mahindra Lifespace Developers Ltd is entering the affordable housing business by offering houses in the range of `10 lakh to `20 lakh. In the initial phase, the developer will launch projects in Boisar on the outskirts of Mumbai and Avadi in Chennai in July and August, respectively. Read more.

Lastly, Formula One champion Michael Schumacher was transferred from a French hospital to a facility in Switzerland after emerging from a coma following his ski accident in December. The seven-time world champion underwent two operations to remove life-threatening blood clots after his freak accident.

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