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Showing posts from July, 2013

INTERNET of THINGS NEXT BUSINESS OPP...

The emerging 'Internet of Things' (IoT), or devices which can communicate with one another without human intervention, offer huge business opportunities over the long term, technology research firm Gartner has said. However, diversity of current 'Internet of Things' applications fails to make a compelling business case to explore or commit resources to this emergent area now, a report by Gartner has said. The Internet of Things extends the role of Internet to encompass an increasingly diverse range of devices and communications streams, many of which will be essentially machine-to-machine (M2M) communications, Gartner said. M2M technology allows a device to capture, process and send information via a network that can then act on the data. "The volume of opportunities arising from the Internet of Things over the long term is generally agreed to be in the realm of very large to huge," said Stephen Prentice, vice president and Gartner Fellow. …

LOW COST HOUSING A BIG OPPORTUNITY

Low-income urban families need 15 million homes in a price range of Rs 4-10 lakh, presenting an untapped opportunity of a whopping Rs 9 lakh crore for real estate developers, according to a report by Deloitte India. At least 30,500 housing units were launched below Rs 10 lakh by private developers across 22 cities between June 2011 and January 2013, of which maximum (nearly 39 per cent) were in Gujarat. There is an increased interest in supplying housing and housing finance to low-income customers but the gap between supply and need is huge, according to the report 'State of the Low-Income Housing Market' launched by Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation Secretary Arun Kumar Misra. "There is a large proportion of low-income urban families, with a monthly household income of Rs 10,000-25,000, who can afford privately build formal housing costing Rs 4-10 lakh without any aid from the government. "There is an estimated demand of 15 million homes from these low-income cu…

PRAFUL QUESTIONS POVERTY ESTIMATES

Questioning Planning Commission's latest poverty estimates, NCP leader and Heavy Industries Minister Praful Patel today said they are based on "totally wrong" benchmark of per capita daily expenditure of Rs 33.33 for cities and Rs 27.20 for villages. "...the ceiling set by them (Planning Commission) is totally wrong. In today's time, Commission should set a new ceiling keeping in mind inflation and high cost of living. We do not agree with this data," Patel told reporters on the sidelines of an industry event here. According to Planning Commission data, persons spending over Rs 33.33 a day in cities and Rs 27.20 in villages are not poor. Based on this, Commission concluded that the poverty ratio in the country declined to 21.9 per cent in 2011-12 from 37.2 per cent in 2004-05. On whether living at Rs 27-33 a day was sufficient for poor people, Patel said though there has been progress in the country but the Planning Commission ceiling on poverty is incorrec…

SENSEX ENDS FLAT

Wiping out most of its early losses, the S&P BSE benchmark Sensex today closed almost flat on revival of buying by funds after marginal recovery in rupee from record lows and the government announced steps to revive investment climate. After falling to 19,126.82 points intra-day, Sensex managed to close with just a loss of 2.64 points, or 0.01 per cent, at 19,345.70. The gauge has now lost over 955 points in six sessions. Similarly, the broad-based National Stock Exchange index Nifty lost 13.05 points, or 0.23 per cent, to 5,742 led by banking and interest-related stocks. Also, SX40 index, the flagship index of MCX-SX, closed at 11505.51, down 51.04 points or 0.44 per cent. Rupee plunged to 61 per dollar before trading at 60.88 when the stock market was closing, after Finance Minister P Chidambaram said government will take measures to attract long term non-resident Indian funds. Global markets are keenly awaiting US GDP data release and a policy statement following Fed's 2-da…

CONCENTRATE ON INFRA FOR ANDHRA

The Telugu Desam Party has asked the Centre to immediately constitute a committee of experts to assess the quantum of funds required to develop a new capital city for Andhra Pradesh state subsequent to the formation of Telangana state. "According to our rough estimates, a staggering Rs 4-5 lakh crore will be required to build a new capital and comprehensively create necessary infrastructure. The new capital should be developed on par with Hyderabad," TDP chief N Chandrababu Naidu told reporters here today. Chandrababu placed a set of demands before the Centre to fulfil before completing the formalities related to formation of Telangana state. "The Centre should provide full monetary support for building the new capital. There are a number of central Public Sector Undertakings, research centres and premier educational institutions in Hyderabad. Similar institutions should be built in (new) Andhra Pradesh so that employment opportunities will be available for people of th…

82 LAKH eRETURNS FILED

More than 82 lakh income tax returns have been e-filed till Monday which is 40 per cent higher than the same period last year, the Finance Ministry today said. "On July 30, 2013, 6.23 lakh returns were e-filed till 6 pm. Record peak of more than 85,000 returns per hour has been achieved," the ministry said in a statement. Last date for filing income tax return for individuals and non-auditable cases is July 31, 2013.
The statement said that due to overwhelming response, some taxpayers have reported problems in accessing e-filing portal which is primarily due to network constrains of the local Internet service providers. The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has made it mandatory for salaried individuals earning up to Rs 5 lakh annually to file income tax returns. The tax department had expected a huge surge in the number of online filings.
In the last two assessment years (2011-12 and 2012-13), CBDT had exempted salaried employees earning a salary of up …

SUBBARAO TAKES TOUGH STANCE IN HIS LAST POLICY

RBI Governor D Subbarao today said liquidity tightening steps were not a panic reaction and he refused set a timeline to reverse them, justifying the measures to tame the rupee and keep policy rates unchanged. This is his last policy as he is retiring on September 5th after leading RBI for 5 years...RBI's next Mid Term policy review will be on September 19th. This is Subbarao's 20th Monitory Policy...
"We are as anxious as anyone else to roll these back. But getting locked into a time frame is both not feasible and inadvisable," Subbarao told reporters at the customary post-policy meeting here this afternoon. Subbarao left all key policy rates unchanged and called for urgent measures from the government to contain the current account deficit, which is the main reason for the rupee declining close to 12 per cent since April 1. The recent liquidity tightening measures are aimed at checking undue volatility in the foreign exchange market and will be rolled ba…

GOOD REWARDS ONLY KEEP TALENT IN

In the "eye of an employee turnover storm", Indian companies need to seriously focus on factors such as clarity about business strategies and fair compensation to retain talent, says global HR consultancy Hay Group. Citing the practices of the country's most admired companies, which have been able to hire, harness and retain top talent, Hay Group said such entities depend on five factors for talent management. They are providing clarity on strategies, instilling confidence, encouraging employees to reach their potential, enabling them to work better and aligning rewards, it said. ". the economic upturn is expected to come with a risk that will have implications for talent management -– driven by an ambitious middle class, employers at India Inc will likely face a talent crisis in the coming year," Hay Group India Managing Director Gaurav Lahiri told PTI. He said that already employees are starting to seek new job opportunities in sector where …

SEARCH FOR BERNANKE SUCCESSOR ON

US President Barack Obama has zeroed in on "some extraordinary candidates" to succeed Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke who can take ordinary people's views into account when deciding the fiscal policy of the world's largest economy. In an interview New York Times, Obama commented on one of his most anticipated decisions - to find a replacement to Bernanke when his term expires on January 31. Obama said he had narrowed his choice to succeed Bernanke to "some extraordinary candidates" and he would announce his choice "over the next several months."
With current fiscal policy measurably slowing the recovery, many in business and finance have looked to the Fed to continue its expansionary monetary policies to offset the drag, the Times said. Obama underlined that he wanted someone who would not just work abstractly to keep inflation in check and ensure stability in the markets.
"The idea is to promote those things in serv…

I WILL FIGHT ECONOMIC INEQUALITY

A feisty US President Barack Obama has vowed not to "sit around and twiddle my thumbs for the next 1,200 days" in the face of opposition from his Republican rivals in Congress who are blocking his efforts to improve the lives of weary Americans.
Obama also said the widening income inequality and the lingering effects of the financial crisis have frayed America's social fabric and undermined Americans' belief in opportunity.
"I will seize any opportunity I can find to work with Congress to strengthen the middle class, improve their prospects, improve their security," he said.
Obama, 51, now in the seventh month of his second innings at the White House, he vowed not to be cowed by his Republican adversaries in Congress and said he was willing to stretch the limits of his powers to change the direction of the debate in Washington.
"I'm not just going to sit back if the only message from some of these folks is no on everything…

INSURANCE HOT SPOT FOR JOBS

The hiring trend in the private insurance firms shows an optimistic outlook in view of the proposed rise in foreign direct investment with experts predicting up to 30 per cent growth in recruitment. "The job scenario in the private insurance segment has been good and it is growing consistently, despite the cost optimisation. Hiring will rise to around 25-30 per cent from last year as more investments are likely to happen in this sector, and big players will eye more business in the country," GlobalHunt Managing Director Sunil Goel told PTI. If the global economic conditions are better, the hiring would go by up to 40-50 per cent, Goel added. Recently, during a meeting chaired by the Prime Minister, the Cabinet decided to raise FDI cap in the insurance sector from 26 per cent to 49 per cent under automatic route, under which investing firms do not require prior approval from the government. Shriram Life Insurance CEO and whole time Director Manoj Kumar Jain,…

INFRA ON BUMPY TRACK

India Ratings has maintained a negative outlook for the infrastructure sector in the second half of 2013, citing the current unfavourable macroeconomic variables and project-level challenges. "The slowing economy will have a negative impact on transportation assets, particularly those in early ramp-up stages. Road and port projects continue to be plagued by execution challenges and poor traffic, while a sizeable number of power projects continue to be impacted by fuel shortages, execution bottlenecks and weak off-taker quality," the rating agency said in a report released here today. This, the report said, will constrain the sponsors' ability to raise equity, which in turn will pressurise weaker projects, especially those with frail financial structures. India Ratings, however, added that "the long-term credit fundamentals for infrastructure projects remain protected, underpinned by favourable demand trends due to the massive infrastructure deficit …

HYDERABAD REALTY HIT BY POLITICAL UNCERTAINITY

Political uncertainties in Andhra Pradesh over Telangana issue has hit Hyderabad's residential market hard. Developers are sitting on unsold housing stock of 28 per cent of the units launched during last 3-4 years, says a report by global property consultant Knight Frank.
"33,000 homes are unsold in the primary residential market of Hyderabad till June 30, out of 1,18,000 housing units that have been launched by the developers over the last 3-4 years," Knight Frank India Chief Economist and Director Research Samantak Das told PTI. Das added that the growth in housing demand has been slower than the supply because of political uncertainties in Andhra Pradesh over demand for a separate Telangana state. The consultant also said that it will take more than two years to absorb the current unsold inventory as the city has been taking longer time for absorption than other metros. "Largely an end user market, Hyderabad has witnessed an extended slump due t…

TATA MOTORS NEW SERVICE INITIATIVE

As part of its HorizoNext strategy, auto major Tata Motors today launched 'Tata Motors Service', a comprehensive and renewed service programme for achieving deeper customer engagement. Besides, the company, which has been facing steep fall in sales for the past many months, also rolled out 11 distinctive service offerings across its 800 service networks spread over 500 locations. "As a part of our greater focus on customer delight in our HorizoNext strategy, these service initiatives harness technology and our network to take service to a higher level of customer satisfaction," Tata Motors passenger vehicle business unit head Ranjit Yadav said after unveiling the new brand identity for the company's new service programme. With these initiatives, the company will harness its over 800 technology-backed sales outlets and customer insights to the next level, he said. To attract customers, the company has already announced a new format of its passeng…

IBM PREFERRED DESTINATION

When it comes to employment, many aspirants give more weightage to the job profile and brand image of a company than the salary package, a survey shows. The survey by Firstnaukri.com, a portal for campus hiring, also found that BE/B.Tech IT students prefer IBM for employment, followed by TCS and Infosys. "Job profile and brand image of the company continue to rule the choice in comparison to salary package during placements," according to the survey.
The findings are based on questions e-mailed to jobseekers registered with the portal. It covered BE/B.Tech, BBA, BCA, B.Sc, non-IT engineers, finance and computer science graduates and post-graduate students. "Infosys, TCS and IBM still remain the big giants in campus placements for IT students. It is interesting to note that the students are keener for a good job profile rather than a fat salary package," Firstnaukri.com Business Head Deepali Singh said. For non-IT engineers, the Defence Research and D…

I COULD HAVE COME A YEAR EARLIER

President Pranab Mukherjee today inaugurated a library and sports ground with a small regret that if he had come to Rashtrapati Bhavan earlier he could have saved some structures from demolition. "I thank my team and Secretary Omita Paul for renovating this library (named after him). "I wish I could have come a little earlier and saved some (structures) from demolition and (they could) be utilised for better purposes," he said addressing families of those who reside in the Rashtrapati Bhavan complex. The gathering included a number of youngsters. Mukherjee today spent close to two hours meeting kids, youngsters and staffers of the Presidential Estate as he dedicated the two facilities and unveiled a bronze statue of Mahatma Gandhi near the historic Durbar Hall of the President's house. The 77-year-old President inaugurated the first ever statue of the Father of Nation in the Rashtrapati Bhavan which till now only has his portraits. "Many great people come to th…

COLLECT EMI'S THROUGH ECS

Auto and home loan borrowers need not pay post dated cheques towards EMIs as RBI has directed banks to collect monthly instalments through electronic mode wherever the facility for such fund transfer is available. Banks are advised that no fresh or additional post dated cheques (PDC) or Equated Monthly Instalment (EMI) cheques shall be accepted at locations where Electronic Clearance Service (ECS) is available, RBI said in a notification. "The existing cheques in such locations may be converted into ECS by obtaining fresh ECS (Debit) mandates," it said. The move is aimed at cutting usage of cheques and promoting electronic transfer. It will also save borrowers the efforts of going to branch for collection of cheque books. The notification also said that ECS also accords the same rights and remedies to the payee against dishonour of electronic funds transfer instructions under insufficiency of funds as are available under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instru…

COST OF LIVING TOP 10 CITIES

POVERTY ESTIMATES FAR FROM FACTS

Questioning Planning Commission's latest poverty estimates, NCP leader and Heavy Industries Minister Praful Patel today said they are based on "totally wrong" benchmark of per capita daily expenditure of Rs 33.33 for cities and Rs 27.20 for villages. "...the ceiling set by them (Planning Commission) is totally wrong. In today's time, Commission should set a new ceiling keeping in mind inflation and high cost of living. We do not agree with this data," Patel told reporters on the sidelines of an industry event here. According to Planning Commission data, persons spending over Rs 33.33 a day in cities and Rs 27.20 in villages are not poor. Based on this, Commission concluded that the poverty ratio in the country declined to 21.9 per cent in 2011-12 from 37.2 per cent in 2004-05. On whether living at Rs 27-33 a day was sufficient for poor people, Patel said though there has been progress in the country but the Planning Commission ceiling on poverty is incorrec…

PRESIDENT COMPLETES 1 YEAR, BUSY SCHEDULE TOMORROW

President Pranab Mukherjee completes a year in office tomorrow. He has a very busy schedule for the day which includes unveiling of a bronze statue of Mahatma Gandhi sculpted by a 89-year-old man and launching of a project to digitise rare photographs. The President, who has made only two foreign visits during the year and travelled extensively within the country. He begins his day by inaugurating "Pranab Mukherjee Public Library" for the residents of the Rashtrapati Bhavan. The library is coming up in a dilapidated building in the President's Estate which was renovated and converted into a library. It si only for the use by the residents of the Rashtrapati Bhavan Estate and their children. Fully air conditioned, the library will have a rich collection of books, newspapers and magazines for all age groups as well as a special children's section.Separate reading rooms will be provided for young students to prepare for competitive and other examinations.…

HIRING TRENDS ON CHANGE

Hiring for IT graduates in the country would witness a slight difference from this year, as hiring patterns have changed and priorities placed on soft skills and domain-based specialisation, a top NASSCOM official said today. "The hiring might not be the same from this year, since the hiring patterns has changed," NASSCOM president Som Mittal told reporters here.
He also attributed the slow hiring pattern to the slow attrition rates in the country, "When the attrition rates are less, naturally hiring rates will also be slower."
As to whether the hiring will be less, he said, "The numbers will not be as big as it used to be... though, we will be hiring in 2014-15, they will actually be for 2015-16, so that they can go through their training.. We spend over two per cent of our revenue for training."
The hiring would happen this year in two phases -- September to October and in May to July, he said, adding, in the first phase it will happ…

HARYANA TOPS IN HOSEHOLD SPENDING

Haryana topped the list among large states recording largest household monthly per capita expenditure (MPCE) in urban areas whereas in rural areas, Kerala ranks the first, a government survey said.
Haryana recorded a MPCE of Rs 3,346.32 in cities followed by Himachal Pradesh at Rs 3,173.30 and Kerala at Rs 3,044.22 as per the National Sample Survey Organisation's survey on household consumer expenditure from July 2011 to June 2012. The study also revealed that among the large states, Kerala stood at first position by recording MPCE of Rs 2,355.53 in rural areas followed by Punjab at Rs 2,136.39 and Haryana at Rs 1,925.96.
In case of union territories and smaller states, Andaman and Nicobar islands tops the charts with monthly per capita expenditure of Rs 4,439.03 in urban areas followed by Delhi at Rs 3,160.76 and Chandigarh at Rs 3,000.27. Similarly in rural areas, among union territories and smaller states, Delhi comes first with MPCE at Rs 2,690.24 followed by Chandigarh at Rs …

ADS ARE MISLEADING

Advertising industry watchdog ASCI upheld complaints against 123 campaigns in May for misleading ads, including those of Sony India, Vodafone, Hindustan Unilever and Reckitt Benckiser India. According to the Customer Complaints Council (CCC) of ASCI (Advertising Standard Council of India), maximum 70 complaints of misleading ads were from the education sector during the month.
The CCC concluded that the claims mentioned in the advertisement of Sony Xperia Z smartphone which showed the phone could be washed with water and still it worked were not substantiated and the complaint was upheld, said ASCI. ASCI also upheld a complaint against Reckitt Benckiser's ad for Veet body moisturiser which claimed, among others, that 'it's unique pro-minimise formula delays hair re-growth which makes your skin feel touchable, smooth for a longer time' putting it under not adequately/scientifically substantiated category. Similarly, another FMCG firm Hindustan Unilever was also pulled o…

PORTFOLIO MANAGEMENT AUM'S ON RISE

Wealthy investors are reposing greater faith in their portfolio managers for investments or advisory services, as the assets under management of such entities have reached a record level of Rs 7 lakh crore in the Indian capital markets.
According to the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi), Assets Under Management (AUM) of portfolio managers increased to Rs 7.01 lakh crore at the end of June, from Rs 6.17 lakh crore in the previous month.
This is the 14th consecutive monthly rise in AUMs of portfolio managers, who mostly manage investments or provide advisory services to High Networth Individuals (HNIs). The total AUM has nearly doubled since the data was first released by the market regulator Sebi in December 2010.
During June, portfolio managers individually handled assets worth Rs 5.15 lakh crore for discretionary services, besides Rs 78,198 crore for advisory services and another Rs 29,255 crore for non-discretionary investments.
Of the total assets managed by portfolio m…

NOW ELECTORAL FUNDS

To bring in greater transparency in corporate funding of political parties' poll expenses, the government has paved way for setting up of 'Electoral Trust' companies that would get tax benefits for funds given to various political outfits. The latest move would allow the entities to register non-profit companies having 'Electoral Trust' as part of their names, thus differentiating them from the companies having other business interests. The Corporate Affairs Ministry has amended its 'Name Availability Guidelines' for the companies to enable registration of such entities. "Name including phrase 'Electoral Trust' may be allowed for registration of companies to be formed under Section 25 of the Companies Act, 1956 under the Electoral Trusts Scheme, 2013, as notified by the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT)," the ministry said in a new circular. However, such a company would have to be a new entity and the name application …

TELEGRAM FEVER

The 163-year old telegram service may have technically come to an end a week ago but for many who rushed to be a part of history by sending their last telegrams, the journey is not over yet. Even after a week of booking their cherished telegrams, many -- including those who used 'Taar' for the first time in their lives -- are still awaiting confirmation that the messages have indeed been delivered to the rightful recipients. "I booked eight telegrams on Sunday but none of them has reached. I rushed to book telegram, the service that I never used in my life, as it was turning in to history," says Delhi-based businessman Sanjeev Yadav. "With so much delay in delivery, government has killed the meaning of telegram," Yadav, who stood in the queue at Central Telegraph Office for around two hours, said. The telegram, once the fastest mode of communication, lost its sheen with advent of telephone and later with widespread of mobile phones. Still…

INDIA 2nd LARGEST INVESTOR IN LONDON

India has emerged the second largest investor in London, with companies like software major Infosys attracted to the city by the investment fervour generated by the 2012 Olympic Games. Software services firm Infosys led the charge of inward foreign direct investment (FDI) by a total of 28 Indian companies, which generated 429 additional jobs for the British economy in the last year alone, according to latest government figures released here today to mark a year since London hosted the world's biggest sporting events. "India is a very important market for us and these are fantastic results. The Olympics provided the perfect opportunity for Indians to come and experience London and resulted in more Indian companies setting up here," Gordon Innes, CEO of London and Partners (L&P) and the Mayor of London's business and promotional organisation, told PTI. "I had taken the mayor, Boris Johnson, to India last year where we held some very important …

INDIANS WORK HARD ON VACATION

Indian professionals are more hardworking than their peers globally with many of them dedicating at least one to three hours for work even during holidays, says a survey.
The findings, based on a survey of more than 26,000 executives worldwide by provider of flexible workplaces, Regus, revealed that about 49 per cent of Indian professional spends more time on work, much higher than the global average of 41 per cent. As per the survey, the top reasons making professionals to work on vacations are the urge to check mails, the boredom of being so free on a holiday, obsession with files, clients and meetings and insecurity about jobs or the uneasiness of leaving behind the workstations. Individually, 50 per cent of Indian men surveyed prefer to work for around one-three hours every day even when on a holiday as compared to 38 per cent women respondent in the country. "The dedication men worldwide and especially in India are showing towards their jobs is admirable …

HSBC RETAINS SENSEX TARGET

HSBC Global Research has retained its Sensex target of 20,700 points at the end of 2013. "After the Q4 FY13 (ending March) earnings season, the Street scaled back forecasts on GDP, the rupee value against the USD and market EPS. We believe this dose of realism is healthy for the market," HSBC Global Research said in its `India Equity Insights Quarterly' report. "With growth concerns now more severe across North Asia, we believe India looks relatively better placed in a regional context. Our year-end 2013 index target is 20,700 - 3 per cent above the current level," it said. The 30-share BSE benchmark index ended at 20,149.85 today. "We believe the recent liquidity tightening by the Reserve Bank of India is likely to be temporary, as it could derail the nascent recovery. Raising the Marginal Standing Facility (MSF) rate on July 15 to 300bps above the repo rate should see a hardening of the yield curve," HSBC Securities and Capital Mar…

CYBER CRIME SYSTEMIC RISK

A majority of stock exchanges worldwide came under cyber attacks last year and almost 90 per cent of them perceive such activities to be a potential systemic risk, according to a survey. For the bourses, cyber-crimes -- whose nature is becoming more complex -- could result in "massive financial and reputational impact," among other adverse fallouts. The findings are part of the 2012-13 Cyber-Crime Survey jointly conducted by the IOSCO Research Department and the World Federation of Exchanges. It covered various exchanges and central counterparty clearing houses across the world. The International Organisation of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) is a grouping of capital market regulators, including the Securities and Exchange Board of India.
"A majority of exchanges (89 per cent) view cyber-crime in securities markets as a potential systemic risk," the report said. More than half of the exchanges surveyed said they had suffered a cyber attack in 2012. "Exchanges…

CHEERS IN PLACE OF THANKS

Britons are shunning the formal 'thank you' and are more likely to use trendy phrases such as 'super' and 'awesome' to show their gratitude, a new study has found. Words such as 'Cheers', 'ta' or 'that's great' have replaced a thank you because many Britons think it's too formal. Researchers found that four in 10 Britons prefer not to use it while 13 per cent think it is old-fashioned, the 'Daily Express' reported. Instead, words such as 'cool', 'brilliant', 'lovely', 'fab', 'super', 'you star', 'wicked', 'okay', 'nice one', 'much appreciated', 'awesome' and even 'boom' are more popular than a thank you. "People still like to give and receive thanks, but in the modern world there are a million different ways to do this. People use different phrases depending on the situation and who they are speaking to," said Zoe Sho…

TRAVELLERS MOBILE SAVVY

Travellers having Internet access are increasingly using smartphones and tablets to get information about tourist destinations and make payments online, says a Goolge study. Of more than 1,500 travellers surveyed, 87 per cent said they used smartphones to research their trips and 66 per cent respondents said they booked a trip element on it, the study 'Multi-screen Traveller' said. About 60 per cent respondents said information they find while researching on smartphones influences their booking decision, it said. The study revealed that 76 per cent users use both computers and mobile devices across various travel stages such as researching and booking. Moreover, the biggest trigger for holiday planning are online pictures. Browsing pictures on social networks, blogs, travel sites get users to start thinking of their next vacation destination, it said. Indian travel planner goes through a variety of resources around destination research, like browsing through pictures on social…

JOBS 680...APPLICATIONS 1.8 LAKHS

State-run steel maker SAIL has received job applications from over 1.80 lakh engineering graduates for 640 managerial posts. "The process (of recruitment of engineering graduates) has been attracting high number of applicants from leading institutes across the country, with an overwhelming response of over 1,80,000 applicants in 2013," Steel Authority of India (SAIL) said in a statement. The leading steel producer regularly inducts young, qualified and professional talents in frontline managerial cadre and has invited applications for 640 posts this year. "The recruitments have been to the tune of over 600 engineering graduates every year keeping in view the on-going massive expansion and modernisation programme involving investment of Rs 72,000 crores approx," the company said. "Selection for the same is based on an extensive written examination followed by a group discussion and interview," it said.
During the current year, the test was …

ULTRA LOW COST CAR FROM RENAULT NISSAN

Franco-Japanese auto alliance Renault-Nissan today said it will double its investments in India to 5 billion dollars in the next five years for overall expansion, including new products and adding fresh production capacity in the country. The alliance, which today announced a completely new global platform of vehicle (CMF-A), developed fully from the scratch in India for high growth markets, said it is still working on an ultra low cost car (ULC) that would be only tad costlier than Tata Nano. "We have been investing in India .... The Chennai plant, technical centre and the new platform CMF-A and others for introducing new models, so far we have invested USD 2.5 billion in the country," Renault-Nissan alliance Chairman and CEO Carlos Ghosn told reporters here. "There are so many products coming. Nissan has already said 10 cars by 2016 and Renault is also planning to bring many more. So our overall investments of USD 2.5 billion in India will double in t…

TCS INDIA'S MOST ADMIRED COMPANY

TCS has emerged as India's most admired company ahead of Hindustan Unilever, ITC, and Infosys, says global management consultancy Hay Group. According to the findings of the second edition of India's Most Admired Companies (IMAC) compiled by Hay Group in association with Fortune India, TCS replaced last year's winner group company Tata Steel by scoring highest on parameters such as corporate governance, financial soundness, and talent management. Second-ranked FMCG HUL has been rated highest on its endurance and product quality, while ITC and Infosys share the joint third spot. SBI, L&T, Tata Steel, ONGC, Maruti Suzuki, and ICICI Bank also feature in the top 10. Commenting on the findings, Hay Group India MD Gaurav Lahiri said "this year, two criteria in particular, Leadership, and Creating Shareholder Value, separated the Top 10 from the rest of the winners, with Talent Management coming in a close third." Interestingly, last year's top…

RAREST GOLD COINS DISCOVERED

A diver struck gold, literally, when he found 48 gold coins that are nearly 300 years old, and believed to be worth a whopping USD 200,000, off the coast of Wabasso Beach in Florida. The coins, discovered by the 'Capitana' boat crew over the weekend, are believed to be those aboard 11 Spanish ships that broke apart in 1715. Bounds and his crew found the gold approximately 200 feet off the coastline, 'New York Daily News' reported. "You go out every day, hoping that it's gonna happen, and a lot of times it doesn't," dive boat Captain Greg Bounds told WPTV news channel. "But when it does, it's just amazing, the feeling that you get," he said. "Eleven Spanish galleons, loaded with treasure, were sunk along the coastline out here by a hurricane (in 1715). That's what gives us the Treasure Coast," said Brent Brisben, whose company owns salvage rights. "To see [Bounds] come up out of the water, and over th…

MICROSOFT SLASHES PRICE OF SURFACE TABLET

Microsoft has quietly cut the price of its entry-level Surface tablet computer by some 30 percent, after surveys indicating sluggish sales. The Surface RT tablet was being sold for as low as USD 349 for US customers on the Microsoft website today, down from the introductory price last year of USD 499. The move comes amid a price war for tablets and a flood of new devices on the market. Amazon has slashed prices of its Kindle HD tablets to as low as USD 169 in the US and 139 pounds in Britain, while Barnes & Noble has cut the price of its Nook to as low as USD 129, and has announced plans to outsource production of its tablets. Microsoft introduced its Surface last year at a premium price, promoting the device as a substitute for a personal computer with an attachable keyboard. But a survey by the research firm IDC estimated the company sold just 900,000 units in the first quarter, in a global market of some 49 million. Microsoft previously cut the price of the …

RBI IN ACTION TO REDUCE VOLATILITY IN RUPEE

In a move to stem the continuing fall of rupee, the RBI tonight came out with a slew of measures including hiking the lending rates for banks and sucking up of Rs 12,000 crore, to make the currency dearer. The measures came after high level meetings between the Prime Minister and the Finance Minister followed by discussions with RBI Governor D Subbarao who was called here today as the rupee lost 33 paise to reach 59.89 after touching over 61-levels last week. Under the measures announced, RBI raised lending rates to commercial banks 2 per cent to 10.25 per cent making the loans costlier. The RBI will conduct sale of Government of India Securities to suck up Rs 12,000 crore on July 18 from the market, in a move to make rupee dearer. 
"The Marginal Standing Facility (MSF) rate is calibrated with immediate effect to be 300 basis points above the policy repo rate under the Liquidity Adjustment Facility (LAF)... Accordingly, the Bank Rate also stands adjusted to 10.25 …

NO SLOWDOWN IN RICH SPENDING POWER

The Economy is passing through critical phase...Rupee is falling to historic lows....Industrial output dropped to record lows...There is looming shadow of slowdown on the Economy...But the spending power of a majority of people in the High-Income Group continues to rise amid the economic slowdown, with more than a third of their income set aside for luxury brands ASSOCHAM in its survey report revealed..

"Despite the global economic slowdown, the size of high-income group consumers continues to grow and they spend over 40 per cent of their monthly income on luxury items, whereas middle-income group consumers have come under heavy pressure," Assocham said in a statement on the survey. The respondents said the slowdown in the economy had not affected their spending patterns, with many of them stating that maintaining their lifestyle was an extremely important facet of their social life, it said. "Brand recognition continues to rise as consumers become more discerning and se…

MALLYA FIRMS GO TO SCRAPS...

Leading bourses BSE and NSE today decided to shift securities of several firms, including Vijay Mallya-led Kingfisher Airlines and United Breweries (Holdings), to the restricted trading category from July 19. The scrips of Reliance MediaWorks and Ramco Systems, among others, would also be moved to the restricted on both stock exchanges. BSE would shift 62 securities to the trade-for-trade or 'T' group, while NSE would transfer 36 stocks to this segment, the stock exchanges said in separate notifications today.
The stocks would be shifted with effect from July 19. In the trade-for-trade segment no speculative trading is allowed and delivery of shares and payment of consideration amount are mandatory. As per the bourses, the move is part of the "surveillance review and with a view to ensure market safety and safeguard the interest of investors".
The stock exchanges have advised the trading members to take "adequate precaution" while trading…

PVR TICKETS ON BOOK MY SHOW

Online ticketing firm BookMyShow.com today said it has inked a five-year pact with PVR Ltd, to sell tickets of the multiplex chain online across the country. "BookMyShow.com has signed a five-year deal as the online ticketing partner for PVR cinemas across India. The companies are targeting ticket sales worth Rs 1,000 crore over these five years," BookMyShow.com said in a statement. Bookmyshow will market and sell tickets of PVR Cinemas, over its web, mobile apps and other affiliate channels, the company said.
"The partnership extends to areas outside just pure sales but also to harnessing bookmyshow's analytical ability to ensure targeting the right content to right users as well as marketing initiatives around non-movies and alternative content," BookMyShow.com Founder & CEO Ashish Hemrajani Said.
"This is another initiative to help augment the box office revenues by reaching out to more and more consumers and achieving better penetration in…