Business & Finance - General awareness questions on current affairs

1)   Karnataka Bank signed an MoU with which insurance company?
- Published on 24 May 17

a. Life Insurance Corporation
b. General Insurance Corporation
c. Max Life Health Insurance
d. Religare
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Life Insurance Corporation

Explanation:
Karnataka Bank has entered into an MoU with LIC for selling life insurance products.

The bank signed the corporate agency agreement with LIC in Mangaluru on 22 May.

The bank will be able to provide vast choice of life insurance products to its customers across all its 769 branches with this MoU.

LIC and Karnataka Bank are two great household names and both are time tested entities.

This tie-up will provide an opportunity to provide more effective life insurance solutions to the customers.

LIC will strive hard to create customized insurance solutions for the customers of Karnataka Bank, and is committed for reaching a new benchmark in claim settlement process, he said.


2)   BSNL has inked agreements with which companies to promote value added and internet services?
- Published on 22 May 17

a. Facebook
b. MobiKwik
c. Paytm
d. Both a and b
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Both a and b

Explanation:
State-owned telecom operator BSNL has inked a clutch of agreements with Facebook and MobiKwik as its looks to popularise the internet and its value added services among customers.

The pacts were signed to commemorate the World Telecommunication and Information Society Day.

Under the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Facebook, Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) will provide connectivity for the social network’s Rs.Express Wi-Fi Program’.

Facebook, through the Express Wi-Fi service, offers internet facility via public hotspots to users in rural parts of the country, in partnership with telecom operators.

Under another MoU, the company will work with digital payments firm Mobikwik to co-create a BSNL mobile wallet to facilitate payment for its products and services.

The wallet will be available exclusively to BSNL customers in India.

Additionally, MobiKwik will also enable “digital sale” of BSNL SIM cards through its app and website. A third MoU with Disney India will provide premium online gaming services to mobile customers of the telecom operator.

The state-run operator which is facing stiff competition from private telcos like Airtel and Reliance Jio, also launched a new solution in partnership with Data Infosys to offer bulk email services to government and private companies.


3)   Which port will see a 4 fold rise in capacity of its coal jetties following upgradation?
- Published on 16 May 17

a. VO Chidambaranar Port
b. Mundra Port
c. Kandla Port
d. Vizag Port
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: VO Chidambaranar Port

Explanation:
V.O. Chidambaranar Port is all set for a four-fold increase in the capacity of two of its Coal Jetties – Jetty I and II from 6.25 MTPA to 24 MTPA.

The VOCP Trust signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation Limited (TANGEDCO) for the upgradation of Coal Jetty I and II in New Delhi.

The project would benefit both TANGEDCO and the VOCPT.

It would make coal handling by the jetties much more voluminous and efficient, and thus bring down logistics costs.

This would also allow for cheaper production of electricity, which would be very beneficial for industrial growth.

With the upgradation of the coal jetties, TANGEDCO will be able to handle additional volume of coal cargo for the upcoming new power plants in Uppur and Kadaladi in Ramanathapuram district in Tamil Nadu.

In addition to this, there will be quicker turnaround of vehicles with the deployment of high tech handling equipments like two ship unloaders, each with a minimum 2000 TPH capacity and a high capacity conveyor system of 4000 TPH.

This enhancement of handling capacity and upgradation of infrastructure will result in reduction of logistics costs.

TANGEDCO will therefore be able to utilize the services of the Port in a more cost-effective way.

With the power generation from TANGEDCO’s Tuticorin plants being linked to the National Grid, this would enable availability of additional power at reduced costs, which, in turn, can fuel industrial growth and employment generation.

Port Upgradation: Know More

  • The project is the outcome of Ministry of Shipping’s Project Unnati, under which a study, ‘Unlocking National Ports Potential’ was done to improve the handling capacity of CJ-I & II.
  • The estimated cost for upgrading CJ-I & II is about Rs.800 Cr.
  • As per the MoU, initially Coal Jetty-I will be upgraded in about 24 months by constructing a new Coal Jetty-I of 300m x25m along with repair of the existing CJ-I.
  • CJ –II will be upgraded thereafter.
  • The upgradation will give a competitive edge to VOC Port and will help it maintain its lead position in coal handling.


4)   DIPAM has set up an Investor Facilitation Platform. What does DIPAM stand for?
- Published on 12 May 17

a. Department of Investment and Private Asset Management
b. Department of Investment and Public Asset Management
c. Department of Investment and People Asset Management
d. Department of Investment and People Assets Management
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Department of Investment and Public Asset Management

Explanation:
Finance Ministry has set up an Investor Facilitation Platform that will provide information about stocks of public sector units.

Set up by the Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (DIPAM), the platform will be an interactive forum for all stakeholders, including investors, investment banks, law firms, public sector units and administrative ministries that are involved in stake sales.

Developed and maintained by PRIME Database, all users will have to register on the facilitation platform, which will then be authorised by DIPAM.

According to an official, different categories of users will get different kinds of information. But the overall objective is to make them more in touch with PSU disinvestment issues.

Investors will get features like price movements, shareholding patterns and financial results.

For other intermediaries likes investment banks and law firms, the facilitation platform is expected to give them closer access and better interaction with DIPAM to work on ongoing and upcoming stake sales.

DIPAM is also likely to soon launch a PSU information platform that would provide investors with details on listed PSUs including their daily prices, financial and annual results, corporate announcements and also details of the Board of Directors.

Investors should be aware about their investments. This will also bring more accountability in the functioning of PSUs.

The move comes at a time when DIPAM is expected to raise INR 72,500 crore from disinvestment proceeds this fiscal, including INR 46,500 crore from minority stake sales.


5)   BSE Sensex reached its record close of _____ in May 2017.
- Published on 11 May 17

a. 30,246
b. 30,247
c. 30,248
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: 30,248

Explanation:
The 30-share BSE Sensex reached its record close of 30,248.

The index has surpassed its previous record closing of 30,133.35 reached on April 26. It also surpassed its intra-day peak of 30,184.22 recorded on April 27 to hit a fresh intra-day high of 30,271.60.

The NSE index Nifty has breached the 9,400-mark for the first time. The NSE index registered a record high of 9,415, surpassing its previous milestone of 9,377 reached on May 5.

The indices have settled at their respective closing highs after the IMD’s new monsoon forecast has predicted that India is likely to receive higher monsoon rainfall as the concern over the El Nino weather condition has eased.

What is a Share Market Index?

  • A share market Index shows how a specified portfolio of share prices is moving in order to give an indication of market trends.
  • It is a basket of securities and the average price movement of the basket of securities indicates the index movement, whether upwards or downwards.
  • BSE Sensex is such an index.
  • The BSE SENSEX is a free-float market capitalization-weighted stock market index of 30 well-established and financially sound companies listed on Bombay Stock Exchange.


6)   Which online classified platform acquired home services marketplace Zimmber?
- Published on 09 May 17

a. Quikr
b. Olx
c. Times Classified
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Quikr

Explanation:
Online classifieds platform Quikr has purchased home services marketplace Zimmber for an undisclosed amount.

The online platform looks to grow deeper into the home services space.

Zimmber is Quikr’s tenth acquisition and offers a marketplace for plumbers, electricians, carpenters and cleaning agents.

The company will continue to function independently of the parent company’s own services.

The acquisition allows us to further scale Quikr to deep stack service capabilities.

Zimmber had raised nearly $7.5 million from investors such as IDG Ventures and Omidyar Networks.

The company raised its last round of $5 million in July 2016 and is suspected of having run out of money, leading to a sale.

While co-founder Amit Kumar will make the move to Quikr along with founding member Siddhartha Srivastava who serves as the CPO, the rest of the founding team have exited the business.

Quikr had acquired real estate portal CommonFloor in a $200 million deal which it announced in January this year.

Quikr: Know More

  • Founder: Pranay Chulet
  • Founded: 2008
  • CEO: Pranay Chulet (Jul 2009–)
  • Location: India
  • Headquarters: Bengaluru
  • Major Subsidiaries: Commonfloor, Blitzkrieg Technology Private Limited


7)   RBI has tightened the rules around JLFs. What does JLF stand for?
- Published on 08 May 17

a. Joint Lenders Forum
b. Joint Liability Forum
c. Joint Liaison Forum
d. None of the above
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Joint Lenders Forum

Explanation:
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has tightened the rules around making the Joint Lenders’ Forum (JLF) more effective.

It is directing banks not to break any rules and to meet all deadlines.

The RBI has said that any breach of rules would attract a monetary penalty.

JLFs are meetings held to revitalise stressed assets.

In JLF banks attempt to red-flag stress early and check them by putting in place a corrective action plan (CAP).

JLFs inefficiency basically stems out from the disagreements between lenders. The entire model of JLF is based on the premise that collective action of banks against a borrower for recovery.

However, in reality, different lenders have different levels of comfort or discomfort, based on the exposure, collateral, etc.

Many lenders have also complained about the lack of transparency in JLF.

As per the new norms, RBI has lowered the threshold needed for implementing the corrective action plan (CAP).

Now, the decisions agreed to by a minimum of 60% of creditors by value and 50% of creditors would now be valid to implement the CAP.

Once a decision is reached by the JLF, it would be binding on all other lenders and they must implement it without any additional conditionality.

However, if a lender wants to exit by exercising the substitution option but failed to exit within the given time, it has to go along with the decision taken.

RBI JLF rules : Know more

  • RBI has asked all banks to ensure their representatives on the JLF to be armed with appropriate mandates.
  • It has also asked the executives to take an unambiguous and unconditional stand and vote accordingly. As per the new norms, the executives after taking the decision should be suitably empowered to implement them without necessitating any board approvals.
  • The CAP can include resolution through the flexible structuring of project loans, change in ownership under strategic debt restructuring or scheme of the sustainable structuring of stressed assets.


8)   Which company and its JV partner IWI has inaugurated the country's first private sector small arms manufacturing plant at MP?
- Published on 08 May 17

a. Punj Llyod Ltd
b. TASL
c. Reliance Defence
d. Honeywell
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Punj Llyod Ltd

Explanation:
Punj Lloyd Ltd (through its wholly-owned subsidiary Punj Lloyd Industries Limited) and its JV partner Israel Weapon Industries (IWI) has inaugurated the country’s first private sector small arms manufacturing plant at Malanpur in Madhya Pradesh.

The JV company, Punj Lloyd Raksha Systems Pvt Ltd, will manufacture small arms in the plant for the Indian defence forces and also for exports.

This is the first opportunity for the country to get its own ‘Made in India’ small arms.

The need of the hour is to replace the country’s defence weapons with sophisticated and high precision products and Punj Lloyd Raksha Systems is the answer to the country’s immediate need.

Known for executing infrastructure projects, Punj Lloyd diversified into defence sector by setting up a manufacturing unit at Malanpur with an estimated investment of INR 200 crore for fabrication and assembly facility for defence systems, primarily small arms.

For this, it had formed a JV with Israel Weapon Industries (IWI), a part of SK Group that manufactures innovative small arm systems.

IWI designs and develops technologically advanced systems for military, homeland security and commercial agencies worldwide. IWI product ranges are deployed in close collaboration with the Israel Defence Forces (IDF), seeking technological innovation, manufacturing excellence and outstanding performance.

Israel’s Ministry of Defence fully and wholeheartedly supports this cooperation and will continue to support the transfer of technology and information also in the future, for the betterment of improved advanced tools.

Israel and India consider their defence industry cooperation as a monumental step forward, towards a future of immense potential.


9)   According to RBI, India’s forex reserves rose to which record high?
- Published on 08 May 17

a. USD 372.73 billion
b. USD 373.73 billion
c. USD 374.73 billion
d. USD 375.73 billion
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: USD 372.73 billion

Explanation:
According to the Reserve Bank of India’s weekly statistical supplement, India’s foreign exchange, Forex reserves have increased by USD 1.594 billion to touch a lifetime high of USD 372.73 billion in the week that ended on April 28.

The increase was due to increase in foreign currency assets (FCAs), The reserves had increased by USD 1.250 billion to USD 371.14 billion in the previous week.

The components of India’s Foreign Exchange Reserves include foreign currency assets (FCAs) Gold Special Drawing Rights (SDRs) RBI’s Reserve position with International Monetary Fund (IMF).

FCAs constitute the largest component of the Forex Reserves. FCA surged $1.569 billion to $349.055 billion in the reporting week. FCAs consist of US dollar and other major non-US global currencies.

It also comprises of investments in US Treasury bonds, bonds of other selected governments, deposits with foreign central and commercial banks.

FCAs include with them the effects of appreciation or depreciation of non-US currencies like the euro, pound, and the yen and is expressed in terms of dollars.

The gold reserves stand at USD 19.869 billion. SDRs’ value has increased USD 8.5 million to reach USD 1.460 billion. RBI’s reserve position with the IMF also increased by USD 15.8 million to reach USD 2.347 billion.


10)   Which design services digital signal processing unit has LTTS acquired?
- Published on 04 May 17

a. Esenza Technologies Inc
b. Esencia Technologies Inc
c. Esenza Technologies Ltd
d. Esencia Technologies Ltd
Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

ANSWER: Esencia Technologies Inc

Explanation:
The board of L&T Technology Services (LTTS) has approved the acquisition of U.S.-based Esencia Technologies Inc, a provider of design services in digital signal processing for communications, video, security and networking.

A technology arm of engineering giant Larsen & Toubro, LTTS is also betting on big orders from multi-billion dollar global firms for double-digit growth in revenues in FY18.

This is above industry body Nasscom’s projections.

LTTL won a notable deal from a European OEM for design, development, implementation and standardisation of its digital engineering framework.

The company reported an 11.5% fall in net profits to INR 96.5 crore even as foreign exchange fluctuations weighed on profitability.

However, revenues rose 1.4% to INR 812.3 crore while in dollar terms the revenue grew by 3.4%.

Meanwhile, the acquisition will deepen LTTS’ offerings to global customers, in the realm of perceptual computing, Internet of Things, advanced silicon products and wireless networking technologies.

Esencia has a team of more than 100 embedded, ASIC design and semiconductor experts in Silicon Valley.

LTTS’ board also elevated A.M. Naik’s successor, S.N. Subramaniyan, at the EPC major parent to the position of vice-chairman from that of non-executive director.

LTTS: Know More

  • Headquarters: India
  • CEO: Keshab Panda (10 Jan 2015)
  • Founded: 2012
  • Parent organization: Larsen & Toubro
  • Subsidiaries: L&T Thales Technology Services Private Limited


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