Banking Awareness of 14, 15 and 16 May 2024

By Priyanka Chaudhary | Last Modified: 16 May 2024 17:16 PM IST
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Topic: Indian Economy/Financial Market

1. India’s merchandise exports increased by 1% to USD 34.99 billion in April 2024.

  • India’s trade deficit increased to a four-month high level of USD 19.1 billion in April 2024.   
  • Despite global economic uncertainties, increase in exports is due to growth in sectors like electronics, chemicals, petroleum products and pharmaceuticals.
  • In April 2024, imports also rose by 10.25% to $54.09 billion from USD 49.06 billion in April 2023.
  • The import of precious metals more than doubled in April 2024. They increased to $3.11 billion in April 2024.
  • Crude oil imports increased by 20.22% to $16.5 billion.
  • Trade deficit is the gap between imports and exports. In April 2023, it was $14.44 billion.
  • It was previously recorded at high level in December 2023 at $19.8 billion.
  • According to the commerce ministry data, the estimated value of services exports for April 2024 is $29.57 billion. It was at 25.78 billion in April 2023.
  • In the fiscal year 2023–2024, India's exports reached a record USD 778 billion.
  • The total value of exported goods and services was USD 776.3 billion in the fiscal year 2022–2023.
  • Services exports rose from USD 325.3 billion to USD 341.1 billion in 2023–2024.
  • In 2023–2024, merchandise exports decreased slightly from USD 451.1 billion to USD 437.1 billion.
  • India's exports to a number of nations, including China, Russia, Iraq, the United Arab Emirates, and Singapore, have increased significantly in the fiscal year 2023–2024.
  • The UK, Australia, Saudi Arabia, the Netherlands, and South Africa are the other nations included in the top 10 list.
  • Total imports decreased from USD 898.0 billion in 2022–2023 to USD 853.8 billion in 2023–2024.
  • The trade deficit declined from USD 121.6 billion in 2022-23 to USD 75.6 billion in 2023-24.

Topic: Indian Economy/Financial Market

2. According to a government survey, the unemployment rate in urban areas fell to 6.7% in the March quarter.

  • According to the 22nd Periodic Labor Force Survey (PLFS), the unemployment rate for people aged 15 and above in urban areas declined to 6.7% in the January-March period from 6.8% a year ago.
  • In April 2017, PLFS was launched by the National Sample Survey Office (NSSO).
  • Unemployment, or unemployment rate, is defined as the percentage of unemployed people in the labour force.
  • In the March quarter of FY 2023, the unemployment rate was 6.8%, while it was 6.6% in April-June as well as the third quarter (July-September 2023) of the last financial year.
  • The unemployment rate was 6.5% in October-December 2023.
  • The unemployment rate and labor force participation rate data for urban areas:


January-March 2024

October-December 2023

July-September 2023

April-June 2023

January-March 2023

Unemployment Rate (Overall)






Unemployment Rate (Women)






Unemployment Rate (Men)






Labor Force Participation Rate (Overall)






Topic: Reports and Indices

3. Fitch Ratings said bank loans grew by 16% in the financial year 2023-24.

  • As per the US-based rating firm, this was similar to FY23 and exceeded the 8% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) over FY15-FY22.
  • Retail loans forms around 10% of system loans. Retail loans grew at a 20% CAGR since FY21.
  • This was caused by a shift towards unsecured credit to expand margins, said Fitch Ratings.
  • Large private banks got significant market share in the previous credit cycle. They continue to grow rapidly. Public banks lagged behind large private banks.
  • Fitch made these points in its report titled 'Risk profile weighs on Indian banks' viability ratings despite improved performance'.
  • According to Fitch, India's household debt is among the lowest in the world, although it has risen to around 40% of GDP from 38% in FY23.

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Topic: Indian Economy/Financial Market

4. WPI inflation reached a 13-month high level of 1.26% in April 2024.

  • Wholesale Price Index (WPI)-based inflation increased from a level of 0.5 per cent in March 2024 to 1.26 per cent in April 2024.
  • This increase was because of both food and fuel inflation. In April 2023, WPI inflation was at (-) 0.8 per cent.
  • In April 2024, the Wholesale Price Index has risen for the sixth successive month on a year-on-year basis.
  • The WPI increased 0.8% month over month in April.
  • This was due to increases in primary articles and food prices of about 2%. The prices of manufactured products were up 0.5%.
  • The price rise in primary food articles increased from 6.88% in March to a four-month high of 7.74% in April.
  • Cereals and pulses inflation stood at 8.7% and 16.6%, respectively.
  • Vegetables inflation increased from 19.5% in March to 23.6% in April.
  • Potatoes and onions reported a sharp increase in inflation, reaching 72% and 59.8%, respectively, from 53% and 57% in March.
  • The Wholesale Food Index increased 5.5% compared with 4.65% in March.
  • Out of 17 manufactured products tracked for the WPI, 11 recorded lower prices than a year ago.
  • Crude petroleum and natural gas inflation increased from 4.87% in March to 4.97% in April.

Topic: Indian Economy/Financial Market

5. Northeastern states’ average net assets under management has increased by about 145% from the 2020 level.

  • The study by ICRA Analytics said Mutual Funds (MF) investments increased from ₹16,446 crore in March 2020 to ₹40,324 crore in March 2024.
  • Northeastern states’ share increased to 0.73% of the total assets under management of the MF industry from around 0.67% in March 2020.
  • Assam was most important contributor in the northeast with an assets under management of ₹29,268 crore.
  • It accounted for nearly 73% of the total investment in March 2024.
  • Assets under management of Assam grew by almost 159% in last 5 years, up from ₹11,298 crore in March 2020.
  • Meghalaya accounted for 9% of the total assets under management at ₹3,623 crore in March 2024.
  • It registered a 111% growth of over ₹1,714 crore in March 2020.
  • The other States in the order of investment size are Tripura, Nagaland, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur and Mizoram.
  • In April 2024, the Indian mutual fund market saw a steady increase in inflows into both debt and equity-oriented schemes.
  • Investing in equity-oriented plans brought in ₹18,917 crore (₹6,480 crore), a 192% rise.
  • Thematic or sectoral funds saw a 741% increase in inflows in April 2024, reaching ₹5,166 crore.


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Topic: Indian Economy/Financial Market

6. Retail inflation in India decreased slightly in April, hitting an 11-month low of 4.83%.

  • According to government data released on May 13, India's retail inflation eased marginally to an 11-month low of 4.83% on an annual basis in April, from 4.85% in the previous month.
  • A Reuters survey of 44 economists had projected that number to decline to 4.80%.
  • The number remains within the 2-6% tolerance range set by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).
  • According to National Statistical Office (NSO) data, inflation in the food basket rose by 8.7% in April from 8.52% in March.
  • Sequentially, the inflation rate in April stood at 0.48%.
  • India's vegetable inflation stood at 27.80% on an annual basis, compared to 28.30% in March.
  • Meanwhile, inflation rates of cereals and pulses, which form a significant part of India's staple diet, came in at 8.63% and 16.84% respectively.
  • The fuel and light inflation rate declined by (-)4.24% in April.

Topic: Banking System

7. SBI became the first bank as a trading and clearing member of IIBX.

  • The State Bank of India (SBI) has announced that it has become the first trading-cum-clearing member of the India International Bullion Exchange (IIBX).
  • India International Bullion Exchange (IIBX) is India’s first bullion exchange in GIFT City, Gandhinagar.
  • Now, SBI’s IFSC Banking Unit (IBU) will be able to trade on the IIBX platform.
  • Recently, RBI has permitted IBUs to act as trading members and clearing members at IIBX as special category clients (SCCs) to import gold through the bullion exchange.
  • With the entry of SBI, the trading volume at IIBX will get a boost.
  • India International Bullion Exchange (IIBX):
    • Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the India International Bullion Exchange (IIBX) on July 29 2022.
    • It is regulated by the International Financial Services Centres Authority (IFSCA).
    • It promotes bullion trading, investment in bullion financial products, and vaulting facilities in IFSCs.
    • India's gold market is one of the largest in the world and holds an important position in the global bullion market.

Topic: Banking System

8. In the financial year ended in March 2024, the total profit of Public Sector Banks crossed ₹1.4 lakh crore.

  • It recorded a growth of 35 per cent over the previous year with a high base of ₹1 lakh crore.
  • In 2022-23, 12 public sector banks' total profit reached a net profit of ₹1,04,649 crore.
  • State Bank of India (SBI) contributed more than 40% of the total earnings.
  • SBI earned a profit of ₹61,077 crore, which is 22% more than the previous financial year.
  • Delhi-based Punjab National Bank with 228% had the highest net profit growth in terms of Percentage.
  • It is followed by the Union Bank of India with a 62 per cent rise and the Central Bank of India with a 61 per cent increase.
  • Bank of India registered a growth of 57% while Bank of Maharashtra's profit increased by 56%.
  • In the financial ecosystem, the government has implemented a comprehensive 4R strategy: Recognising NPAs transparently, Resolution and Recovery, Recapitalising PSBs, and Reforms.

Topic: Corporates/Companies

9. In FY 2023-24, Oil Marketing Companies registered significant profit growth.

  • The total profit of Oil marketing companies stood at 86 thousand crore rupees in the financial year 2023-24. It is 25 times more than last fiscal year's profit.
  • Oil Marketing Companies' net profit is 543% up in comparison to the fiscal year 2013-14.
  • Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited registered a record net profit of over Rs 16,014 crore. It was in loss of six thousand 980 crore rupees in the 2022-23.
  • In the last fiscal year, Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited's profit reached to 26 thousand 673 crore rupees. It is around 13 times higher than the 2022-23 fiscal year.
  • BPCL’s capital outlay of ₹1.7 lakh crores over 5 years under ‘Project Aspire’ created long-term value for shareholders.
  • IOCL capped an excellent year with the historically best refinery throughput, sales volume and net profit.
  • After the announcement of results, markets reacted positively to the results with BPCL and HPCL rising in share prices.

Topic: MoUs/Agreements

10. MSDE signed a MoU with Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd for the Drone Didi Yojana.

  • Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd inked a pact with the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship to conduct two Pilot Projects under the Drone Didi Yojana.
  • Under this MoU, MSDE and M&M will conduct two Pilot Projects at the National Skill Training Institute (NSTI) located in Hyderabad and Noida.
  • 500 women in exclusive batches of 20 women each will be imparted with skills.
  • The 15-day curriculum, approved by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), will be delivered through Remote Pilot Training Organisation (RPTO) instructors at these Centres.
  • Drone Didi Yojana was launched to train 15,000 women to operate drones for agricultural purposes.
  • The drones will help in monitoring crop growth and planting seeds.
  • This scheme will help in generating new livelihood opportunities for women by imparting skills in new technology areas.


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