1. Financial Literacy Week (FLW) is being organized by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) from February 13 to February 17, 2023.
- This year, the theme of FLW is “Good Financial Behaviour - Your Saviour.”
- The theme aligns with the overall strategic objectives of the National Strategy for Financial Education: 2020-2025.
- Its objective is to generate awareness among the general public, create financial resilience and sustain their interest.
- In this, the focus will be on creating awareness about savings, planning and budgeting and judicious use of digital financial services.
- During the month of February 2023, the RBI will undertake a centralized mass media campaign to disseminate financial awareness messages.
- Banks have also been advised to disseminate information and create awareness among their customers.
- Since 2016, the RBI has been organizing Financial Literacy Week (FLW) every year to disseminate financial education messages on a particular theme among public across the country.
Topic: Banking System
2. Profit of PSU Banks increased 65% to ₹29,175 crore during Q3 ended December 2022.
- Bank of Maharashtra (BoM) became top performer in terms of percentage growth in profit.
- Bank of Maharashtra recorded a 139% increase in profit to ₹775 crore at the end of December 2022.
- Kolkata-based UCO Bank followed Pune-headquartered Bank of Maharashtra.
- UCO Bank recorded a profit of ₹653 crore. Union Bank of India and Indian Bank are two other PSBs whose profit growth was higher than 100%.
- Union Bank of India recorded a 107% rise in net profit at ₹2,245 crore for the October-December period of 2022.
- Indian Bank reported a 102% increase at ₹1,396 crore for the Q3 of 2022.
- All 12 PSBs cumulatively made a profit of ₹29,175 crore in Q3 of current financial year.
- This is against the profit of ₹17,729 crore in the same period a year ago.
- PSBs have cumulatively made a profit of ₹70,166 crore for the 1st nine months of the current financial year.
- The profit stood at ₹48,983 crore in the year-ago period.
- The PSBs had made a cumulative profit of about ₹15,306 crore in the first quarter. This increased to ₹25,685 crore in the September quarter.
- The capital adequacy ratio of Bank of Maharashtra was also highest among PSBs. It stood at 17.53%.
- Bank of Maharashtra was followed by Canara Bank at 16.72% as on December 31, 2022.
- Bank of Maharashtra and State Bank of India were in the lowest quartile in terms of gross non-performing assets (NPAs) and net NPAs.
- The gross NPA and net NPA of Bank of Maharashtra were at 2.94% of its total advances and 0.47%, respectively, as on December 31, 2022.
- The gross NPA and net NPA of State Bank of India were at 3.14% of its total advances and 0.77%, respectively, as on December 31, 2022.
Topic: Banking System
3. Ujjivan Small Finance Bank has launched Hello Ujjivan.
- Hello Ujjivan is a mobile banking application with 3 Vs — voice, visual, and vernacular-enabled features.
- Hello Ujjivan has been launched to provide banking access to individuals with limited reading and writing skills.
- The app is accessible by voice in eight regional languages. It was co-created with Navana.AI.
- Users can perform banking transactions and access services by speaking to the app.
- These services include paying loan EMIs, opening FD and RD accounts and transferring funds.
- The app will be available to existing micro-banking customers in the starting phase.
- More languages and banking features will be added to the app in subsequent phase.
- These features include opening new customer accounts, mobile and DTH recharge, paying utility bills and availing repeat loans.
- Ujjivan Small Finance Bank:
- It was set up by Ujjivan Financial Services Limited (UFSL). It started banking operations from February 1, 2017.
- It is a Scheduled Small Finance Bank. It is headquartered in Bengaluru.
4. Paytm has launched a special G20-theme QR Code to celebrate India’s presidency of G20.
- Minister for Railways, Communications and Electronics & Information Technology, Ashwini Vaishnaw, launched the QR code at ‘Digital Payments Utsav’ at India Habitat Centre in Delhi.
- Special G20-theme QR Code features logos of MeitY’s DigiDhan Mission and those of the G20 2023 and the 75th year of India’s independence.
- Paytm’s associate Paytm Payments Bank has won top award of Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) for maintaining one of the lowest average Technical Decline in BHIM UPI transactions.
- Paytm Founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma is also the Chair of the Finance Task Force under 'Startup20'.
- Parent organization: One97 Communications
- Headquarters: Noida
- Founder and CEO: Vijay Shekhar Sharma
5. India, Brazil and the US will work together to establish a global biofuel alliance along with other interested countries.
- The aim of global biofuel alliance will be to facilitate cooperation and intensify the use sustainable biofuels.
- The global biofuel alliance will emphasize on strengthening markets, facilitating global biofuels trade, and provision of technical support for national biofuels programs worldwide.
- The Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas (MoPNG) said that the alliance will complement the relevant regional and international agencies, and initiatives in the bioenergy, bio-economy, and energy transition fields.
- The global biofuel alliance was announced by Oil Minister H S Puri during the India Energy Week 2023 in Bengaluru.
- Global bioenergy partnership (GBEP) was founded in 2006. It was launched during the Ministerial Segment of the 14th session of the Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD14).
- Clean Energy Ministerial Biofuture Platform was launched at 11th Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM11). The Biofuture Platform is a 22-country effort to promote an advanced low-carbon bioeconomy.
Topic: Indian Economy/Financial Market
6. Retail inflation increased to three month high level of 6.52% in January 2023.
- Retail inflation has increased to 6.52% mainly due to higher prices in the food basket, including cereals and protein-rich items.
- Retail inflation was 6.77% in October 2022. It was 5.72% in December 2022 and 6.01% in January 2022.
- Since January 2022, retail inflation has been over the Reserve Bank of India's upper tolerance level of 6% with the exception of November and December 2022.
- In comparison to urban regions, where inflation was just 6%, rural areas had a higher rate of inflation at 6.85%.
- Headline CPI inflation declined by 105 basis points during November-December 2022.
7. Gross direct tax collection increased to ₹15.67 lakh crore between April 1, 2022 and February 10, 2023.
- Gross direct tax collection stood at ₹12.63 lakh crore during corresponding period of last fiscal (FY22).
- Net collection (gross tax minus refund) increased to ₹12.98 lakh crore during the same period of FY23.
- Direct Taxes include Personal Income Tax and Corporate Income Tax mainly.
- Three reasons for higher collection are better performance of economy, improved performance of corporate and rise in salary.
- The Revised Estimates for the current fiscal kept direct tax revenues (net) at ₹16.50 lakh crore. This is higher than the budget estimates of ₹14.20 lakh crore.
8. ₹25,000 crore is estimated to be collected from Special Additional Excise Duty (SAED) for FY23.
- Government expects to collect this amount from windfall tax, or SAED from the production of crude oil, export of Petrol, Diesel, and Aviation Turbine Fuel (ATF).
- Windfall tax came into effect from July 1, 2022. It is revised fortnightly.
- It is imposed on oil companies making windfall, or exceptionally high profits.
- The SAED does not apply to entities whose annual crude oil production is less than 2 million barrels in the previous financial year.
SAED for domestic crude production
Special Additional Excise Duty(SAED)
From November 17 to December 1, 2022
₹10,200 per tonne
From December 2 to December 15
₹4,900 a tonne
From December 16, 2022 to January 2, 2023
₹1,700 per tonne
From January 3 to January 16, 2023
₹2,100 a tonne
From January 17 to February 3, 2023
₹1,900 per tonne
From February 4, 2023 till date
₹5,050 a tonne
9. The number of persons who pay personal income tax has increased by around 1 crore in the fiscal year immediately after demonetisation.
- The number of personal income tax payers has increased around 60% during the first seven years of Modi government.
- The number of corporate tax payers has increased over 32.5% during the first seven years of Modi government.
- The number of personal income tax payers was more than 5.10 crore in the Fiscal Year 2016-17 (Assessment Year 2017-18).
- In the same year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the demonetisation of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes.
- The personal income tax collection has increased from Rs 2.58 lakh crore to more than Rs 6.73 lakh crore in FY22. A growth of more than 160% has been recorded.
- During this period, corporate tax has increased to more than Rs 7.12 lakh crore from over Rs 4.28 lakh crore. A growth of more than 66% has been recorded.
Topic: Indian Economy/Financial Market
10. WPI inflation declined for eighth consecutive month to 4.73% in January 2023.
- The wholesale price-based inflation eased mainly due to easing in prices of manufactured items, fuel and power.
- However, inflation in food articles increased to 2.38% in January 2023.
- WPI based inflation rate was 4.95% in December 2022 and 13.68% in January 2022.
- According to Commerce and Industry Ministry, mineral oils, chemicals & chemical products, textiles, crude petroleum & natural gas, textiles, and food products primarily contributed to decline in the rate of inflation in January 2023.
- In January 2023, inflation in pulses was 2.41%. Inflation in vegetables was (-) 26.48% in January 2023.
- In January 2023, inflation in oil seeds stood at (-) 4.22%.
- Inflation in fuel and power basket declined from 18.09% in December 2022 to 15.15% in January 2023.
- Inflation in manufactured products was 2.99% in January 2023. It was 3.37% in December 2022.