Top headlines: Bid norms eased for Air India; Centre to borrow Rs 1.1 trn

privatisation: Govt to ease bidding norms to attract buyers

The government has decided to take another shot at privatising the debt-laden with relaxed terms, as a postponement of the sale process would cost the exchequer an estimated Rs 12,000 crore in the next two years. Rules will be changed to make it easier for prospective suitors to bid on enterprise value, a popular metric used in takeover deals. Read More

Outside of the number one, everyone complains: BARC CEO Sunil Lulla

The last one week has been a roller coaster for the Broadcast Audience Research Council, or BARC India, the world’s largest audience measurement system, after the Mumbai police claimed to have busted a scam where three channels were paying sample homes to watch their channels. On Thursday, BARC announced it would pause the publication of weekly data for news channels for 8-12 weeks. Read More

Sensex falls 1,066 points on fading US stimulus hopes, Covid-19 surge

The markets fell sharply on Thursday amid a global sell-off in equities as hopes of reaching a stimulus deal before the US presidential election diminished. Also, rising Covid cases and tightening restrictions in Europe clouded sentiment. Snapping its 10-day winning streak, the Sensex closed at 39,728, down 1,066 points, or 2.6 per cent, while the Nifty fell 291 points, or 2.4 per cent, to end at 11,680. Read More

shortfall: Centre to borrow Rs 1.1 trn on behalf of states

In what appears to be a relief for the states, the Centre has said it will borrow up to Rs 1.1 trillion, which is the estimated revenue shortfall on account of implementing goods and services tax (GST), and lend the states under the special window. This may come as a victory of sorts for opposition-ruled states, including Punjab, West Bengal, and Chhattisgarh, which have insisted that the Centre should do the borrowing because it is administratively easier and it can be at a low rate of interest. Read More

Explained: How Uttam Galva Steels lost its sheen amid mounting debts

The Mumbai-based Miglanis were known for eye-catching deals. In 2009, a stake in their flagship Uttam Galva Steels Ltd (UGSL) paved the way for the world’s largest steelmaker, ArcelorMittal, to gain a foothold in India after aborted attempts at setting up greenfield plants. In 2015, when South Korea’s Posco failed to make any headway with its mega steel plant in Odisha, it signed a memorandum of association (MoA) with group company Shree Uttam Steel and Power, for setting up a much smaller plant of three million tonnes. Read More

Stimulus 2.0 has minimal firepower to support growth, says Moody’s

India’s second round of stimulus package will provide limited support to growth and highlights budgetary constraint to back the economy during a very sharp contraction, rating agency Moody’s said on Thursday. On October 12, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman unveiled its second round of fiscal stimulus, amounting to Rs 46,700 crore ($6.4 billion), which is about 0.2 per cent the gross domestic product (GDP) for year ending March 2021. Read More

With an eye on China, India gifts a used submarine to Myanmar

With New Delhi’s announcement on Thursday of the gift of a used submarine to Myanmar, India has played a high card in its long-running competition with Beijing for influence in that country. The Indian Navy has operated INS Sindhuvir, a Soviet-origin Kilo-class submarine, since 1988. Now, with its service life extended by 10-15 years in an overhaul at Hindustan Shipyard Ltd, it will serve the Myanmar navy till the 2030s. Read More

Decoded: How Graded Response Action Plan will tackle air pollution

Stubble burning in the farmlands of Punjab and Haryana, coupled with a nip in the air, engulfs the region already grappling with high levels of vehicular pollution in a blanket of smog. The air quality index (AQI), which is indicative of the air quality levels, has reached “very poor” this week. On Thursday, the average AQI of Delhi was 322 and with that the Graded Response Action Plan has kicked in. Business Standard decodes the action plan now in place. Read More

OPEC+ will ensure oil prices do not plunge again: Mohammad Barkindo

The OPEC+ alliance will ensure oil prices do not plunge steeply again when it meets to set policy at the end of November, OPEC’s Secretary General said on Thursday, adding that demand has been recovering more slowly than expected. “I want to assure you that the OPEC, non-OPEC partnership will continue to do what it knows best, by ensuring that we don’t relapse into this almost historic plunge that we saw,” Mohammad Barkindo said. Read More

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