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Moody’s downgrades India’s key financial institutions

The close links between the four companies and the government is the key reason why Moody’s has changed the outlooks for these companies to negative from stable, after doing the same for the sovereign rating.

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Economy

Mumbai, Nov 8 : Moody’s Investor Services on Friday downgraded financial institutions closely linked to the Indian government’s sovereign rating from ‘stable’ to ‘negative’ after a similar rating action on India’s sovereign outlook which elicited a quick response from the government.

Moody’s on Friday revised the outlook of six systemically financial institutions including the State Bank of India and HDFC Bank to negative from stable.

The outlook was revised down for EXIM India, HDFC Bank, Hero FinCorp, HUDCO, IRFC, and SBI but was maintained at stable for Bank of India (BOI), Canara Bank (CAN), Oriental Bank of Commerce (OBC), Syndicate Bank (Syndicate) and Union Bank of India (UBI).

Explaining the rational for the dowgrade of EXIM India, HUDCO, IRFC, and SBI, Moody’s said that their final ratings are at the same level as the sovereign rating because of the uplift to their ratings, based on Moody’s assumption that these companies will receive government support in times of need.

“Consequently, if Moody’s downgrades the sovereign rating, it will also downgrade these companies’ final ratings. The close links between the four companies and the government is the key reason why Moody’s has changed the outlooks for these companies to negative from stable, after doing the same for the sovereign rating,” Moody’s said in a statement.

Moody’s justified its rating action on the country’s largest private bank, HDFC Bank by saying that the bank has large direct exposure to government debt and also as the Baseline Credit Assessment (BCA) of a bank is capped at the sovereign rating of the country that it operates in.

Moody’s said it expects that BOI, CAN, OBC, Syndicate and UBI to continue to enjoy a very high level of support from the government. Under these support assumptions, even if the sovereign rating is downgraded by one notch to Baa3, the support uplift should be sufficient to keep the final ratings unchanged at Baa3, it said.

“This situation is the key driver of Moody’s affirmation of the five banks’ ratings.
Moody’s does not have any particular governance concern for all the issuers impacted by today’s rating action,” it added.

Business

Galaxy S11 may come with a 120Hz high refresh rate display

The Galaxy S11 is not the only device rumoured to launch with a 120Hz display, OnePlus is also looking forward to launch its new smartphone with ultra-high refresh rate.

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Seoul, Nov 21 : South Korean tech giant Samsung is reportedly planning to introduce a high refresh rate of 120Hz display with its upcoming smartphone Galaxy S11.

Famed leakster Ice Universe Ice universe tweeted screenshots of Samsung’s latest One UI beta update that insinuate the Galaxy S11 could receive a 120Hz display.

The Galaxy S11 is not the only device rumoured to launch with a 120Hz display, OnePlus is also looking forward to launch its new smartphone with ultra-high refresh rate.

Recently, a code in the APK file (the Android app software file) for Samsung’s camera app suggests that Galaxy S11 lineup would support 8K video recording.

The Exynos 990 chipset, which is expected to power the international variants of the device, features [email protected] video decoding/encoding capabilities.

Additionally, Qualcomm’s upcoming Snapdragon 865 chip, which will power the US variants of the S11, is also expected to have enough horsepower to offer 8K video recording.

Earlier, famed leakster Ice Universe had claimed that the Galaxy S11 would not use the 108MP ISOCELL Bright HMX sensor that it launched earlier this year, but would instead utilise an upgraded second-generation sensor.

The upcoming Samsung Galaxy S11 smartphone will be available in three screen sizes – 6.4 or 6.2-inch being the smallest, mid-sized with 6.4-inch and 6.7-inch being the largest one.

As per a recent report, Galaxy S11 would arrive in the third week of February 2020 and the launch event is said to take place in San Francisco.

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Business

Punit Goenka to ZEEL staff: Stake sale as per debt repayment plan

Shares of ZEEL on the BSE, closed at Rs 345.25 on Thursday, higher by Rs 38.10 or 12.40 per cent from the previous close.

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New Delhi, Nov 21 : Punit Goenka, the MD and CEO of Zee Entertainment Enterprises (ZEE) has written to the employees of the company saying the proposed sale of 16.5 per cent stake by the Essel Group is in line with the overall debt repayment plan.

Describing the decision as a strong step forward, Goenka, who was reappointed as the MD and CEO earlier in November, said he looks forward to work with the employees and elevate the company to a global media and entertainment powerhouse, said the communication seen by IANS.

He said the promoters would continue to hold 5 per cent stake in the company and thanked the employees for their trust and support.

The Subhash Chandra-led Essel group on Wednesday announced that it is planning to sell 16.5 per cent stake in ZEEL to financial investors in order to repay loan obligations to certain lenders of the group.

After this transaction, the promoter stake in Zee Entertainment will be reduced to 5 per cent, which means that media baron Subhash Chandra will lose control of Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd.

Zee, considered a pioneer of television entertainment industry in India, was launched by Subhash Chandra in 1992. Ever since the launch year, the company expanded operations to enter packaging, infrastructure, education, precious metals, finance and technology sectors.

Earlier this year, Essel Group sold up to 11 per cent in Zee Entertainment to Invesco Oppenheimer Developing Markets Fund for Rs 4,224 crore.

Prior to the Wednesday announcement, Subhash Chandra’s Essel Group companies held 22.37 per cent promoter stake in Zee. Of this, 21.48 per cent was pledged as collateral against finances availed by Essel Group firms.

Post completion of the transaction announced on Wednesday by the company, Oppenheimer Developing Markets Fund and OFI Global China will together hold 18.74 per cent.

Shares of ZEEL on the BSE, closed at Rs 345.25 on Thursday, higher by Rs 38.10 or 12.40 per cent from the previous close.

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Slowdown dents October Mergers and Acquisitions deal activity: Report

The report disclosed that while domestic deal segment saw a downtrend in terms of both volumes and value, the cross-border deals value almost doubled.

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Mumbai, Nov 21 : Slow economic growth, amid prevailing uncertainties have dented the volume of ‘Mergers and Acquisitions’ activity in the country which declined by 40 per cent to 28 deals last month from 47 reported for the corresponding month of last year, a report showed on Thursday.

According to Grant Thornton’s M&A Dealtracker report for October 2019, a total of $1.53 billion worth of transactions were spread across 28 deals from a year-on-year level of 47 deals worth $2.81 billion.

However, the report revealed an increase in the deal values despite 22 per cent fall in deal volumes as compared to September 2019, showing signs of improved sentiments and appetite for big ticket deals.

“This was driven by the corporate tax cut, which has improved both investor sentiment and confidence. This also resulted in the average deal size more than doubling from $24 million in September 2019 to $55 million in October 2019,” the report said.

Besides, the report disclosed that while domestic deal segment saw a downtrend in terms of both volumes and value, the cross-border deals value almost doubled.

“The month also displayed great potential in the automotive and infra space, attracting big cheques of over $100 million each amid the recent slowdown in the auto sector,” the report said.

“Consolidation in these sectors was driven by strategic reasons to access combined market potential and gain sizeable market share.”

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