June 15, 2018

WORD OF THE DAY

CORE INFLATION

A measure of inflation that excludes price changes in the food and energy sectors because they are inherently volatile. It is calculated using the Consumer Price Index, which calculates the cost of purchasing a fixed basket of goods during a given period of time.

Courtesy: Mint

NATIONAL NEWS

  1. The European Union Film Festival (EUFF)will premiere in New Delhi at the Siri Fort Auditorium.
  2. The Union Minister for Railways, Coal, Finance & Company Affairs, Mr Piyush Goyal inaugurated Neyveli Lignite Corporation India Limited (NLCIL)’s three 100 MW Solar Power Projects for commercial operation and dedicated these projects to the Nation in Tamil Nadu.
  3. Mr. J P Nadda, Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare exchanged the MoU with the State Health Ministers of 20 States marking their commitment towards the launch of the Ayushman Bharat – National Health Protection Mission (AB-NHPM).
    • West Bengal, Odisha, Karnataka, Punjab and Delhi are yet to implement this programme.
  1. Flipkartowned PhonePe has partnered cab aggregator Ola that will allow riders to book rides using the former’s payment platform.
    • PhonePe has also added ‘Auto-pay’ feature that enables users to make payments easily.
  1. Marg ERP limited has partnered with ICICI Bank, India’s largest private sector bank by consolidated assets, to offer an integrated payments platform to Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) customers, using MARG’s accounting software.
    • Marg ERP limited is a leading Inventory and Accounting software solution company.
  2. It was announced that The 106th Indian Science Congress will be held at Lovely Professional University (LPU) in Jalandhar, Punjab.
    • The theme for the five-day science congress is ‘Future India: Science & Technology’.
  1. A National Tribal Museum and a National Level Tribal Research Institute is proposed to be set up at Delhi by the Ministry of Tribal Affairs.
    • Museum will feature the rich tribal culture and heritage using advanced technologies.
  1. As a part of Kerala government’s tourism promotion programme, ‘Yoga Ambassadors Tour’, a specialized trip for yoga professionals from around the world was inaugurated by Minister of State for AYUSH Shripad Yesso Naik.
    • It aims to design a wholesome yoga package for visiting tourists with well-known yoga destinations with related activities.
  1. An all women Naval mountaineering team led by Lt Cdr Kokila Sajwansummited Mount Deo tibba.
    • Mount Deo tibba is the second highest peak (6001M) in the Pir-Panjal range in Himachal Pradesh. It is one of the most difficult peaks to summit
    • Indrasan is the highest peak in Pir-Panjal range.
  1. Japan’s Softbank Group Corp has decided to invest $60 bn – $100 billion in India’s solar power generation.
    • Saudi Arabia is the largest investor in SoftBank’s Vision Fund.
  1. Nitin Gadkari released a book ‘Water productivity mapping of major Indian crops’ published by NABARD (National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development) at an event in New Delhi.
    • The book is about a study on 10 major crops – rice, wheat, maize, pulses, oilseeds, sugarcane, cotton and potato etc.
    • The book recommends to realign cropping pattern with focus on water scarcity of irrigation, ration irrigation supplies in canal irrigation system, enhance micro-irrigation and invest in water harvesting and artificial recharge and promote participatory irrigation management.
  1. With less than a quarter of women of working age in the labor force, India has far fewer women working or available for work compared to any other large economy in the world.
    • Data from the two latest quinquennial employment surveys of the National Sample Survey Office (NSSO) show that this was driven by a rise in the share of women who listed ‘attending to domestic duties’ as their principal activity in the year preceding the surveys.
    • While the rise in share of women attending to domestic duties was more pronounced among rural women, the share of women attending to domestic duties was higher in urban India in both surveys. The analysis includes all women in the age group 15-59 at the time of the survey.
    • Sikhs and Muslims reported the highest share of women attending to domestic duties in 2011-12. Among Hindus, the share was higher for upper castes than for other caste groups.
    • Majority of women attending to domestic duties are, however, willing to work part-time if such work were made available at their household, the survey data shows.
    • Tailoring work seems to be the most preferred option for such women, followed by dairy-related and poultry-related work. The share of women who cited tailoring as their most preferred option rose sharply between 2004-05 and 2011-12.

 

  1. The Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBITC) under Finance Ministry has raised import duty by 5-10% on non-palm edible oils, both crude and refined ones, in order to protect interest of domestic oilseeds growers and processors.
    • Sunflower oil –
      1. Crude Variant – 25% to 35%
      2. Refined Variant – 35% to 45%
    • Crude Groundnut oil
      1. Crude – 30% to 35%
      2. Refined – 35% to 45%
    • Canola Oil – 25% to 35%
  1. Niti Aayog’s Composite Water Index Report
    • Gujarat topped the list while Jharkhand was adjudged as the worst performer.
    • Gujarat is followed by Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Maharashtra.
    • In the north-eastern and Himalayan states, Tripura has been adjudged as the top state in 2016-17 followed by Himachal Pradesh, Sikkim and Assam.

 

INTERNATIONAL NEWS

  1. Federal Reserve officials raised interest rates for the second time this year by 25 basis points to 2.0 percent.
    • Higher interest rates may tempt large foreign funds to move their money to the US, hurting emerging markets.

 

BANKING AND ECONOMY

  1. Fitch Ratings raised India growth forecast for 2018-19 to 4% from 7.3% but cited higher financing costs and rising oil prices as risks to growth.
    • For 2019-20, it estimated the country to grow at 5%.
    • Last month, US-based Moody’s cut India’s growth forecast for 2018-19 to 7.3 percent from 7.5 percent citing rising oil prices.
  1. Fitch has degraded the ratings of ICICI Bank and Axis Bank.
    • It downgraded ICICI Bank’s ‘support rating’ to ‘3’, from ‘2’ and its support rating floor to ‘BB+’, from ‘BBB-’ and Axis Bank at ‘BBB-’.
  1. Current account deficit (CAD) is widening—the means of financing it also became riskier in 2017-18.
    • On the one hand, higher oil prices are raising the CAD and on the other foreign direct investment (FDI), the most stable source of financing the deficit has come down.

 

APPOINTMENTS

  1. Omar al-Razzaz was sworn in as Jordan’s Prime Minister.

 

IMPORTANT DAYS

  1. The World Elder Abuse Awareness Day is observed every year on 15th June.
    • The theme this year is “Moving from Awareness to Action through a Human Rights based approach”.

 

SPORTS

  1. India Women’s Cricket team opener Smriti Mandhana will become the first Indian player to appear in Kia Super League – the women’s cricket super league in England.

 

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