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Media Information
Following SBI, Central Bank freezes home loan rate at 8 pc

Published & Updated as on - 2010-02-18

After State Bank of India, state-owned Central Bank of India has decided to freeze interest rates for new home loans at 8 per cent for a period of one year. It is learnt other public sector banks are also planning to follow suit.

According to Central Bank, there is no upper limit set for the loan amount under this scheme. After a period of one year, the interest rate will be reset to the respective schemes. Central Bank also reduced the lending rate for housing loans up to Rs 5 lakh by 0.5 per cent to 8 per cent from Wednesday under a special package.

“The scheme, which will be applicable for all loans taken till March 31, is aimed at pushing credit flow to the housing sector,” Central Bank executive director Ramnath Pradeep said.

SBI had recently announced a similar scheme, wherein home loan rate was fixed at 8 per cent for one year. However, private sector banks are yet to bring down the home loan rates.

Source:Indian Express 18/2/09.

Geojit Securities Forays into Commodity Futures Trading

Geojit Securities, a leader in stock broking, is now going to venture into a new arena - commodity markets.

Geojit Infofin Technologies, a subsidiary of Geojit Securities Ltd, is to launch futures trading in coconut oil, pepper and rubber. Geojit managing director CJ George told mediapersons that his company had tied up with Ahmedabad-based National Multi-Commodity Exchange of India Ltd (NMCEIL) for futures trade. The trade would be fully online and Geojit would concentrate only on three commodities - coconut oil, pepper and rubber. In the case of rubber, Central sanction was likely in a week after which the trade would be launched.

Geojit had become a member of NMCEIL and First Commodities Exchange of India (FECI) which was into coconut oil futures.

George said Geojit would source orders for commodities futures through its extensive branch network in the state. While NMCIEL had the nod for futures trading in 35 commodities, Geojit would concentrate on those commodities relevant to Kerala. Through its 51 offices in Kerala, the company hoped to reach out to the nook and corner of the state.

This should help make commodities futures accessible to farmers and traders.

The company will launch its trade in another two weeks as it would be shifting to its office in the heart of the city. There would be facilities for online trading using V-Sat.

Source:Indian Express 09/2/09

India budget offers no big new stimulus

Investors reacted with dismay Monday after India's acting finance minister said new economic stimulus measures would have to wait until after national elections, which must be held by May.

Pranab Mukherjee, the acting finance minister, presented an interim budget to parliament Monday that contained no major new stimulus spending or tax cuts, disappointing investors who had hoped the government would break with tradition and announce new stimulus initiatives despite upcoming elections.

He said it would be up to the new government to undertake additional spending — and take on additional debt — to counter the worsening global downturn.

“There may5 be a need to consider additional fiscal measures when the budget is presented by the new government,” Mukherjee said.

The benchmark Sensex index was down 3.5 percent to 9,294.21 by mid-afternoon.

Since December, India has announced two fiscal stimulus programs, cutting taxes and promising to spend US$4 billion — small by global standards. The central bank has also slashed interest rates in an effort to shore up flagging economic growth.

India's economic growth tumbled to an estimated 7.1 percent this fiscal year, after averaging nearly 9 percent over the last four years.

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