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Demonetisation affected repayment of auto loans: Fitch Ratings

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Chennai, January 27: Global credit rating agency Fitch Ratings on Friday said repayment of Indian auto loans got affected by demonetisation and it would take a couple of months for collections to come back to normal levels.

In a statement, Fitch said: Demonetisation appears to have had a negative impact on Indian auto loan repayments, based on collection reports from Fitch-rated securitisation transactions.

It is possible that collections will fall further in early 2017, and we believe it could take at least another two to three months for collections to return to normal.

According to Fitch, small auto loan borrowers have been affected the most but that would not impact credit ratings as there is sufficient external credit enhancement to cover the likely short-term impact on the lenders rated by it.

Fitch said the cash shortage has affected used vehicle operators more than the new vehicle borrowers.

Pools backed predominantly by used vehicle loans saw an average drop in collections of 130 basis points (bp) in November 2016. Those with a higher concentration of light and small commercial vehicles, which again have relatively weaker borrower credit profiles compared with medium and heavy vehicle owners, also dropped significantly by almost 200bp, Fitch said.

The collection of pools securitised in 2016 fell by an average 120bp compared with 80bp for pools securitised before 2016.

More seasoned pools are on an average likely to have more experienced borrowers, with a stronger ability to meet their repayments.

Furthermore, borrowers in seasoned pools will on an average have serviced their loans for longer and have higher equity than those in less seasoned pools, leading to a greater willingness to pay.

All Fitch-rated transactions are currently able to withstand a 30 per cent drop in collections for a minimum of eight months and an average of 22 months, the rating agency said.

IANS

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This Alibaba robot will serve in China’s hotels soon

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Robot in Hotel

Hangzhou (China), Sep 20: China’s e-tail giant Alibaba on Thursday unveiled a robot that will serve guests in the country’s hotels soon.

“The robotics industry is revolutionising the world and Alibaba Artificial Intelligence (AI) Labs is raising the stakes in this industry with the launch of service robots for hospitality sector starting October,” the company said at its annual Cloud Computing Conference 2018 being held here.

The robot was unveiled by Alibaba AI Labs, the AI product development arm, at the four-day tech summit in this scenic city where Alibaba is headquartered, about 180 km southwest of Shanghai.

“This robot will help bridge the gap between the guest needs and the response time they expect. It is the next step in the evolution towards smart hotels,” said the General Manager of Alibaba AI Labs, Lijuan Chen.

Guests staying in hotels will be able to communicate with the robot via voice command, touch and hand gestures. The robot will in turn respond to them through AliGenie, the software behind Alibaba’s smart speaker, Tmall Genie.

“The robot will be the ultimate assistant for hotel guests who want everything quickly at their fingertips,” added Lijuan.

With a multi-sensor data functionality, parallel computing for quick responses, autonomous navigation system to identify obstacles, communication systems to control elevators and identity verification through facial recognition technology, the one-metre tall robot can walk at a metre per second speed.

“After trial at a hotel, Alibaba AI Labs will assess its suitability for other areas, including hospitals, restaurants and office services,” the company added.

According to the International Federation of Robotics, the global market for service robots is expected to grow from 20 to 25 per cent from 2018 to 2020.

The ninth edition of the tech conference is being held from September 19-22 here in the provincial capital of Zhejiang, featuring the latest trends in cloud computing, AI, Internet of Things and blockchain.

IANS

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Delhi aviation firm buys Mallya’s two choppers in e-auction

“Though the 5-seater Airbus Eurocopter B155 choppers are 10-year-old, they are in a serviceable condition, with a good dual engine and are currently parked at Juhi airport in Mumbai,” said Sehrawat.

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Bengaluru, Sep 20 : Delhi-based Choudhary Aviation Facilities Ltd had bought two helicopters of fugitive business tycoon Vijay Mallya in an e-auction conducted by the Debt Recovery Tribunal (DRT-II) here, a company official said on Wednesday.

“Our company bought the two personal copters of Mallya for Rs 8.75 crore at the price of Rs 4.37 crore each in the electronic bidding conducted by the DRT in Bengaluru,” Choudhary Aviation Director Satyendra Sehrawat told IANS from Delhi on phone.

The Tribunal held the e-auction on behalf of a consortium of 17 banks which filed the case in 2013 against Mallya and his defunct Kingfisher Airlines Ltd for defaulting on loans borrowed from 2007-2012.

“Though the 5-seater Airbus Eurocopter B155 choppers are 10-year-old, they are in a serviceable condition, with a good dual engine and are currently parked at Juhi airport in Mumbai,” said Sehrawat.

Three firms participated in the auction, held with minimum bid price of Rs 1.75 crore for each copter of model 2008, last flown in 2013.

“We want to make use of the choppers for commercial activity, including chartered service,” Sehrawat noted.

The 3-year-old firm also provides ground operations and air ambulance service to hospitals in the national capital region (NCR).

The Tribunal, however, did not inform the media about the e-auction.

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Weak global cues subdue equity indices; banking stocks down

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SENSEX-

Mumbai, Sep 19: Weak global cues on the back of escalation in trade tensions subdued equity indices during the afternoon trade session on Wednesday.

Although, the Indian markets opened in the green on Wednesday, subsequent selling pressure in consumer durables, banking and FMCG stocks dragged the NSE Nifty50 and S&P BSE Sensex in the negative territory.

At 1.30 p.m., the NSE Nifty50 traded at 11,266.45 points, lower by 12.45 points or 0.11 per cent from the previous close.

The BSE Sensex, which had opened at 37,432.93 points, traded at 37,256.10 points, lower by just 34.57 points or 0.09 per cent from the previous close of 37,290.67 points.

So far, it has touched an intra-day high of 37,530.63 points and a low of 37,232.77.

The top gainers on the Sensex were Coal India, ONGC, Tata Steel, Hero MotoCorp and Kotak Bank, while the major losers so far were Maruti Suzuki, IndusInd Bank, HDFC Bank, HDFC and Reliance Industries.

IANS

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