Category: Your Money

Reliance Industries – Too big for India

NEW DELHI, INDIA - NOVEMBER 08: Indian Industr...

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Over the following four and a half decades Ambani took plenty more chances, making bets on vast projects and using brawn and guile to deal with officials and politicians. Today RIL is a conglomerate active in energy, refining and petrochemicals, with a market value of $55 billion, or a tenth of the worth of India’s stockmarket.

At the most recent AGM in June some attendees grouched about the stock price and low dividends; today, with the shares at 770 rupees, they might be grumpier still. Though RIL’s motto is “growth is life”, its valuation implies that the years of plenty are over. Of RIL’s main business lines, refining is chugging along, and the firm is investing to double the size of its petrochemicals unit.

An important factor may be that the pool of potential outside investors has shifted from Indian individuals to institutions and foreigners, who are typically sceptical about the long-term prospects of the refining and petrochemical industries, which have a lousy track record in most countries.

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Bank in Asia cuts credit to French lenders

Bilingual signs in Brussels.

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One bank in Asia has cut credit lines to major French lenders while five other banks in Asia are reviewing trades and counterparty risk as worries about the exposure of French banks to peripheral euro zone debt mounts, banking sources told Reuters on Thursday.

Rumours on Wednesday that France was to lose its AAA rating, later denied by ratings agencies, helped trigger the biggest widening in the European credit default swap index since the credit crunch in 2008.

That sudden rise in risk perception, combined with sharp share price falls in French banks, prompted some banks in Asia to speed up reviews of counterparty risk and look at whether they should cut exposure to European lenders, sources at each of the six banks in Asia said.

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JSW Steel to raise output at Karnataka plant

India’s No.3 steelmaker JSW Steel said on Monday it plans to raise production at its plant in Karnataka state after the Supreme Court partially lifted an iron ore mining ban imposed in a key region of the state.

The Mumbai-based steelmaker has a capacity of 11 million tonnes per annum (MTPA), with plants in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu state, and requires 18 MTPA of iron ore to operate them at full capacity, it said.

On Friday, Supreme Court allowed state-run miner NMDC to mine up to 1 million tonnes per month of the steel-making ingredient from 6 August in Bellary.

JSW Steel to raise output at Karnataka plant – Corporate News – livemint.com.

Patient threatened by rating agency medicine

The problem with rating agency and IMF calls for governments to tighten fiscal policy is that monetary policy cannot offset it under current circumstances. We have reached the zero lower bound for interest rates in Japan, the US and UK while quantitative easing in its current form has disappointed.
I would feel relaxed about fiscal tightening if interest rates were 10 per cent or more and central banks could cut them as inflation dropped. But I am not convinced monetary policy can take up the strain if we are seeing fiscal retrenchment at the same time. An expansion of both fiscal and monetary policy offers the best hope for the future.

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