Topic: Reports and Indices
1. Financial Inclusion Index improved from 56.4 in March 2022 to 60.1 in March 2023 according to RBI.
- According to RBI, the value of FI Index grew across all sub-indices.
- Mainly Usage and Quality dimensions contributed to improvements in FI Index. This reflects deepening of financial inclusion.
- The Index for FY ending March 2021 was at 53.9.
- This index was at 43.4 for the period ending March 2017.
- Financial Inclusion Index (FI-Index) captures the extent of financial inclusion across the country.
- It was first published in August 2021 for the FY ending March 2021.
- The value of index ranges between 0 and 100, where 0 represents complete financial exclusion and 100 represents full financial inclusion.
- It consists of three broad parameters-access (35% weightage), usage (45% weightage), and quality (20% weightage).
2. IRDAI has formed inter-disciplinary standing committee on cyber security.
- This committee has been set up to regularly review the threats inherent in the emerging or existing technologies.
- The committee has been set up after the issue of the Information and Cyber Security Guidelines in April 2023.
- The committee will also suggest appropriate changes to the framework to strengthen the cyber security resilience of the insurance industry.
- While suggesting changes in the current framework, the committee will also consider suggestions received from the Regulated Entities in implementation of IRDAI Information and Cyber Security guidelines, 2023.
- The committee has 10 members. It is chaired by PS Jagannatham.
- It comprises technology professionals from academics, industry experts and representatives of the insurance broking community.
- If necessary, the committee can also invite external members.
Topic: Regulatory Bodies/Financial Institutions
3. SIDBI has plans to raise ₹10,000 crore from rights issue next fiscal to expand its capital base.
- SIDBI, which refinances SME loans, plans to conduct the rights issue in two tranches of ₹5,000 crore each next fiscal.
- SIDBI expects to increase its assets to ₹5 lakh crore by March 2024 from about ₹4 lakh crore in March 2023.
- The shareholders will subscribe to the proposed rights issue.
- The Central Government owns 20.8% in SIDBI.
- State Bank of India (SBI) holds 15.65% and Life Insurance Corporation 13.33%.
- The rest of the equity is held by other public financial institutions and banks.
- Capital Adequacy Ratio (CAR) of SIDBI declined from 24.28% in FY22 to 19.29% in FY23. It further declined to 15.63% as of June 2023 quarter.
- The asset base increased 63% from ₹2,47,379 crore in FY22 to ₹4,02,383 crore in FY23. Its income increased 102% to ₹18,485 crore.
Topic: Banking System
4. Indian Bank has launched ‘IB SAATHI’ to improve banking services.
- Managing Director and CEO of the bank, S L Jain, launched the IB SAATHI initiative.
- The initiative is aimed at offering an ecosystem for all stakeholders in the financial sector through the business correspondent route.
- SAATHI stands for Sustainable Access and Aligning Technology for Holistic Inclusion.
- IB SAATHI offers an enhanced user experience through the simplified service delivery to customers.
- With the launch of this initiative, Indian Bank tries to provide basic banking services at all centres for at least four hours per day at fixed branches.
- Banking Correspondents would provide their services directly at the doorsteps of the customers.
- By March 2024, Indian Bank will deploy about 5,000 banking correspondents.
- Indian Bank:
- It was founded in 1907. Its headquarters are in Chennai. Shanti Lal Jain is its MD & CEO.
- From 1 April 2020, Allahabad bank has been merged with Indian Bank.
Topic: Reports and Indices
5. India is ranked first in grassroots crypto adoption, as per Chainalysis’ 2023 Global Crypto Adoption Index.
- India is ranked first in four parameters. These parameters include centralized service value received, retail centralised service value received, DeFi value received and Retail DeFi value received.
- Last year, India stood fourth based on the report.
- In the report, on-chain data and real world data are combined to measure which countries are leading the world in grassroots crypto adoption.
- Nigeria is ranked 2nd in the index, followed by Vietnam, United States and Ukraine.
- The report said that a dramatic uptick was seen in low-income countries in crypto adoption after a decline in late 2022.
- India has also introduced 1 per cent TDS on crypto trades and 30% tax on gains.
Topic: Indian Economy/Financial Market
6. India’s goods exports decreased 6.8% in August to $34.48 billion.
- India’s goods exports declined for the seventh consecutive month in August 2023 (year-on-year).
- Sectors such as petroleum products, gems and jewellery, readymade garments, and chemicals contributed to decline in goods exports.
- However, half of the top thirty export items, including engineering, electronics, pharmaceuticals, and some agriculture goods have shown growth during August 2023.
- India’s imports in August 2023 have declined 5.23% to $58.64 billion.
- Imports of petroleum, coal and coke, pearls, precious and semi-precious stones, and fertilizers have fallen as per the quick estimates released by the Commerce and Industry Ministry on 15 September 2023.
- Trade deficit in August 2023 was at ten-month high level of $24.16 billion.
- Engineering goods exports have turned positive after eight continuous months of year-on-year decline.
- Oil imports in August 2023 declined 23.76% to $13.2 billion. Gold imports in August 2023 increased 38.75% to $4.93 billion.
- In April-August 2023, exports declined by 11.9% to $172.95 billion.
- In the same period, imports declined by 12% to $271.83 billion. Trade deficit in April-August 2023 contracted to $98.88 billion.
Topic: Reports and Indices
7. As of March 2023, Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) or e-rupee worth ₹16.39 crore is in circulation.
- This is according to data from RBI’s Handbook of Statistics on the Indian Economy for FY23.
- The data showed that out of total e-rupee circulation, ₹10.69 crore was wholesale CBDC and ₹5.70 crore was retail CBDC.
- The circulation was highest for ₹500 CBDC notes at ₹2.71 crore. This was followed by ₹200 notes at 1.16%.
- Circulation for all other currency denominations of 50 paise to ₹100 was below 1%. It ranged between 0.01- 0.83%.
- The total flow of resources to the commercial sector increased 31% year-on-year (yoy) in FY23.
- The share of banks increased from 46% in FY22 to 59% of the total flow and the share of non-banks declined from 54% to 41% as per RBI’s Handbook of Statistics on the Indian Economy 2022-23.
- The total flow of resources to the commercial sector stood at ₹29,49,176 crore in FY23 against ₹22,51,703 crore in FY22.
- Under the non-bank category, the resource floe to commercial sector from domestic sources in FY23 was higher at 70%.
- The flow from foreign sources decreased sharply from 52% to 30%.
8. Rahul Navin has been appointed as in-charge director of the Enforcement Directorate.
- The central government has appointed Rahul Navin as in-charge director of the Enforcement Directorate till the name of the regular director is announced or until further orders.
- Rahul Navin is a 1993-batch- IRS officer. He has assumed charge in place of Sanjay Kumar Mishra.
- Earlier, Navin has served as the chief vigilance officer of the ED headquarters.
- With his appointment, Navin has become the most senior officer within the central probe agency.
- In July, the Supreme Court granted an extension of tenure to ED chief Sanjay Mishra till September 15 with no further extension.
- Directorate of Enforcement:
- It investigates offences of money laundering and violations of foreign exchange laws.
- It is responsible for the enforcement of the Foreign Exchange Management Act 2019 (FEMA), Fugitive Economic Offenders Act, 2018, and certain provisions under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.
- It works under the Union Finance Ministry.
- Its headquarters is located in New Delhi and is headed by the Director of Enforcement.
Topic: Awards and Prizes
9. CAG received Rajbhasha Kirti Puraskar for better implementation of the Official Language Policy.
- The office of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) has bagged ‘Rajbhasha Kirti Puraskar’ by the Home Ministry for the “outstanding implementation” of Official Language Policy.
- The award was presented by Minister of State for Home Ajay Kumar Mishra to the Director General (Rajbhasha) of the CAG office in Pune.
- This award has been given for the outstanding implementation of the Official Language Policy by CAG in 2022-23.
- For the better implementation of ‘rajbhasha policies’, the CAG had formed a committee in ‘Hindi Pakhwada 2022’.
- ‘Hindi Pakhwada 2023 is being organized in the Office of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India from September 14 to September 29.
- The main objective of this initiative is to create awareness about official work through Hindi and to promote the use of Hindi.
- According to Article 343 of the Constitution, the official language of the Union is Hindi and the script is Devanagari.
- Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG):
- CAG is an independent authority established under Article 148 of the Indian Constitution.
- He is appointed by the President of India. He is the head of the Indian Audit and Accounts Department. G. C. Murmu is the current CAG of India.
Topic: Banking/Financial/Govt Schemes
10. Vishwakarma scheme was launched by PM Modi on September 17.
- The Centre's new scheme for artisans, PM Vishwakarma, was formally launched on the occasion of Vishwakarma Jayanti.
- The scheme was mentioned by PM Modi on Independence Day and the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs had recently allotted ₹13,000 crore for the scheme.
- The scheme is available to traditional craftsmen and artisans for five financial years from 2023-24 to 2027-28.
- This scheme's focus is driven to financially support the artisans and craftsmen and keep the age-old tradition, culture, and diverse heritage alive and thriving through local products, arts, and crafts.
- Under the scheme, artisans can register in the PM Vishwakarma portal using biometrics.
- They will be provided recognition through the PM Vishwakarma certificate and ID card and skill upgradation involving basic and advanced training.
- It also includes a toolkit incentive of ₹15,000, collateral-free credit support up to ₹1 lakh (first tranche) and ₹2 lakh (second tranche) at a concessional interest rate of 5%, an incentive for digital transactions, and marketing support.
- PM Vishwakarma scheme was approved by Union Cabinet in August 2023.