The government on Friday introduced the Deposit Insurance and Credit Guarantee Corporation (Amendment) Bill in the Rajya Sabha, which aims to provide timely support to depositors of stressed banks. Minister of State for Finance Bhagwat Karad introduced the Bill, which seeks to provide immediate relief to thousands of depositors who have their money parked in stressed lenders.
The Bill has proposed that even if a bank is temporarily unable to fulfil its obligations due to restrictions such as moratorium, depositors can access their deposits to the extent of the deposit insurance cover through interim payments by the Deposit Insurance and Credit Guarantee Corporation (DICGC). For this, the Bill seeks to insert a new Section in the DICGC Act, 1961.
It also seeks to amend Section 15 of the DICGC Act to enable the Corporation to increase the ceiling on the amount of premium, with the prior approval of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). Besides, it will also provide that the DICGC may defer or vary the receipt of repayments due to it from the insured bank and to empower the Corporation to charge penal interest in case of delay in repayment by the banks to the Corporation.
Though the RBI and the central government keep monitoring the health of all banks, there have been numerous recent cases of banks, especially cooperative banks, being unable to fulfil their obligations towards depositors due to the imposition of moratorium by the RBI. Earlier this week, the Union Cabinet cleared amendments to the DICGC Act. Last year, the government had increased insurance cover on deposits by five times to Rs 5 lakh.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a press release)
Less devastating than mega events such as earthquakes and hurricanes, these secondary perils, as they are known in the industry, happen relatively frequently and include hail, drought, wildfire, snow, flash floods and landslides.
Climate change and urban sprawl are driving a jump in secondary perils losses, said Tamara Soyka, Head Cat Perils EMEA at
Insurers and reinsurers, who traditionally focused on predicting big weather events that can cause widespread damage, are increasingly incorporating secondary-peril models.
Swiss Re, for instance, last year started considering pluvial—that is, heavy rainfall, similar to the recent European floods—flood zones when assessing risks.
A storm system over Europe dumped heavy rains in recent weeks, causing heavy floods in Germany, Belgium and parts of the Netherlands and Switzerland. The German Insurance Association on Wednesday said it expects insured losses could hit nearly $6 billion as a result of the flooding in North Rhine-Westphalia and Rhineland-Palatinate. It doesn’t yet have estimates for the damage in Saxony and Bavaria.
This year is expected to be the most damaging for the country since 2002, when insured storm damage totaled about €11 billion, equivalent to $12.98 billion, the association said. While mostly all residential buildings have windstorm and hail coverage, only 46% of homeowners have cover for heavy rain and floods.
Heavy rain, hailstorms and wind in Germany and Switzerland in June have already cost the industry an estimated $4.5 billion, according to analysts at Berenberg.
in a note this week said German insurers “may find it challenging to protect homeowners against climate risk without significant price increases.”
Insurers paid out $81 billion for damages related to natural catastrophes in 2020, according to reinsurance giant Swiss Re, up 50% from 2019 and comfortably topping the $74 billion 10-year average for such losses.
Secondary peril events accounted for more than 70% of the $81 billion in natural catastrophe losses last year, according to the data.
Firms expected to take hits to their earnings from the European floods include Swiss Re,
according to analysts. Spokespeople for Swiss Re, Zurich and Munich Re declined to give estimates of the potential impact.
UBS Group AG analysts project $6 billion worth of losses for the industry, split into $2 billion for primary insurers and $4 billion for reinsurers.
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The prospect of more intense weather has insurers rapidly updating their risk-assessment models and recalculating the price of insurance. Property insurers faced an estimated $18 billion bill for damage to homes and businesses from the long stretch of frigid weather in Texas and numerous other states, the equivalent of a major hurricane, The Wall Street Journal reported earlier this year.
In some cases, the increased frequency of extreme weather events can lead insurers to drop coverage altogether. Some insurers in California chose to not renew insurance policies for homeowners in high-risk areas for wildfires, the Journal reported in 2019. California wildfires the prior two years had killed dozens of people and racked up more than $24 billion in insured losses.
Analysts say the losses from the European flooding will be manageable for the industry. While they may dent quarterly or yearly earnings, they won’t have a seismic effect on their capital. If the coming U.S. hurricane season is a normal one, that will likely crimp earnings further for some.
The Euro Stoxx Insurance index is up 7.6% this year, trailing the broad Euro Stoxx 600 stock-market index, which is up nearly 15%. The insurance index has fallen 6.4% since March 30, which Berenberg analysts attribute to fears of potential dividend cuts due to recent natural catastrophes.
The costs of reinsurance in Asia and the U.S. went up over the past couple of years owing to hurricanes and wildfires, said Berenberg analyst Michael Huttner. But prices in Europe didn’t increase significantly over that period. The floods will likely help catastrophe pricing increase, said Mr. Huttner.
Will Hardcastle, an analyst at UBS, says this year is shaping up to be the fifth consecutive year that natural catastrophe losses will be above reinsurers’ budgeted level.
“The last five years would suggest you’re not getting appropriate pricing for it,” he said. “It’s always difficult to determine whether the trend is short term. Now at this point you have to be thinking it’s more structural” because of climate change, he said.
stock, though it is 0.4% up premarket on Tuesday morning.
One reason for Mr. Bezos’s rocket ride is the more earthly goal of winning government contracts for the kind of less thrilling scientific projects the provide reliable revenue. His Blue Origin company is playing catch-up with Elon Musk’s SpaceX.
is getting a bit of a boost Tuesday morning ahead of the open, rising 1% premarket. It is also gaining more attention on the message boards among day traders, according to Topstonks.com. The company reports earnings next Monday and tends to see its stock rise in the days ahead as investors start hoping for exciting announcements.
In the wider markets, U.S. stock futures are trending higher ahead of the open following Monday’s broad selloff. S&P 500 futures are up 0.5%, while Dow futures are up 0.6%. Nasdaq-100 futures are up 0.4%
Nasdaq the company, not the index, is itself rising premarket, up 1%, after The Wall Street Journal’s exclusive that it will spin out its Private Market for shares in start-ups that trade among some investors before an initial public offering. The business will go into a standalone joint venture company and get investment from three Wall Street banks and SVB Financial Group, a tech specialist bank.
is up 0.8% on large volumes following a 15% rise Monday. The shares are up nearly 80% over the past year, putting the chip maker into the top 10 list of U.S. public companies. It also executed its four-for-one stock split overnight, which has given some investors more ways to trade the stock-performance.
is up 3.4% ahead of the open on Tuesday after turning in decent second-quarter numbers Monday after the close. The computing group’s efforts to refocus on cloud-based computing and spin off its old-fashioned IT services business is winning fans among investors. At the same time, it has benefitted from companies beginning to invest again as the economy reopens.
is rising up the chat charts on social media platforms, according to Topstonks.com, gaining popularity among retail traders. Its shares are up 0.7% premarket on good volumes following a 0.8% rise Monday.
Growing chatter and chunky volumes Tuesday morning for another perennial retail favourite:
State Bank of India (SBI) General Insurance launched the ‘Arogya Supreme’ health insurance plan on Friday, July 9, specifically designed to ensure that policyholders can avail of full insurance coverage including the 20 basic covers and eight optional covers. The insurance policy provides a wide range of sum insured options up to Rs. 5 crores, where customers can choose from three different options, according to a statement shared by SBI General Insurance today. (Also Read:SBI Launches Kavach Personal Loan Scheme: All You Need To Know )
In this regard, the three options available for customers are Pro, Plus, and Premium based on the sum insured and the coverage features of the plan. The health insurance plan also offers customer-friendly coverages such as recovery benefit, sum insured refill, compassionate visit, as well as a facility to choose the policy tenure ranging from one to three years.
”Arogya Supreme health policy is loaded with a refill feature, that enables the policyholder to refill full sum insured if the existing sum insured under the policy is exhausted under any treatment, which is a great relief for the customer,” said PC Kandpal, MD and CEO, SBI General Insurance Company.
”In today’s scenario, health insurance has become a necessity and not an option. Arogya Supreme, a comprehensive health insurance plan, with reinstatement feature and a wide range of sum insured, will enable customers to choose the premium and tenure that suits their needs,” he added.
Last month, the country’s largest lender launched a collateral-free Kavach personal loan scheme for the families affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The loan scheme has the lowest rate of interest and is especially aimed at families struggling financially due to the pandemic, according to SBI.
Indian Cricket Team Captain (Men’s) Virat Kohli invested in Digit Insurance
Startup Digit Insurance is now valued at $3.5 billion after raising $200 million from existing and new investors, in one of the biggest funding rounds in the insurance sector. The existing investor Faering Capital, along with new investors Sequoia Capital India, IIFL Alternate Asset Managers, among others, are participating in the fundraise, which is subject to approval from the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDAI).
Bengaluru-headquartered Digit Insurance, which offers health, car, bike, and travel insurance services, saw smaller funding round in January 2021, when it was valued at $1.9 billion. With the completion of the latest funding round, the company’s valuation will almost double to $3.5 billion.
”…..This is a validation that we are on the right track….We will contribute to the financial security of fellow Indians in a very small way,” Mr. Kamesh Goyal, Founder, and Chairman, Digit Insurance told NDTV.
The investors of the Fairfax-backed insurance company also include A91 Partners, TVS Capital Funds, Indian Cricket Team Captain (Men’s) Virat Kohli, and the employees of Digit Insurance.
Key numbers of Digit Insurance’s growth Photo Credit: Digit Insurance
Digit Insurance registered Rs 3,243 crore in gross premiums in the financial year 2020-2021, up 44 per cent from the previous fiscal’s mark. The company makes use of technology to simplify processes for customers, such as smartphone-enabled self-inspection and audio claims.
In its statement, Digit Insurance said that over the past one year during the pandemic, it has provided COVID-related insurance to almost 3.6 million employees across 32,000 corporates, under corporate health insurance.
Digit claims that since its inception, it has provided insurance to more than 2 crore customers and has processed over 4 lakh claims.
Meme stocks have made a comeback, with one big change: this time around, short sellers aren’t a big player in the market.
Individual investors have been gearing up for some weeks to take on hedge funds that are betting against their favorite stocks. In January, their strategy of banding together online to send a handful of shares like
In the latest bout of frenetic trading in unlikely momentum stocks, there appear to be far fewer opportunities for a short squeeze. That is when a stock price begins rising, forcing bearish investors—typically sophisticated market participants like hedge funds—to buy back shares that they had bet would fall, to curb their losses.
The number of shares outstanding that have been sold short, known as short interest, remains subdued compared with the levels seen in January for popular meme stocks like GameStop,
GameStop has remained wildly popular on Reddit’s WallStreetBets online forum since the first wave in January, and its stock has skyrocketed more than 1000% this year. Short interest accounted for roughly 17% of its shares outstanding as of June 9, compared with 102% at the start of the year, according to data from
another meme stock that has surged over 1900% this year, the picture is more cloudy. The number of shares being shorted has risen, but the ratio relative to its shares outstanding has fallen to about 20%, from a peak of over 24% in early January. The movie-theater chain has sold over 100 million shares since January and converted debt into equity, which has pared the short-interest ratio.
Still, the data suggests that investors like hedge funds aren’t crowding into trades betting on the prices of meme stocks falling.
Analysts say what is likely driving the market more this time around are call options. Those are contracts that give the buyers the right to purchase a stock at a certain date and price. This type of security delivers a profit to the buyers if the underlying shares rise.
A surge in call options activity can force some participants to buy the stock, similar to a short squeeze. But instead of trapping bearish investors, rising call options activity pushes market makers such as banks to buy the stock to hedge their positions. That is because the sellers of the call options are obliged to deliver those shares if the contracts are ever exercised.
Investors like hedge funds could be buying certain stocks to try to trigger this phenomenon, which is known as a gamma squeeze, said Helen Thomas, founder of Blonde Money, a U.K.-based financial research firm. Some individual investors are also trading options and posting screenshots of their positions on Reddit forums.
However, while this type of squeeze can accelerate the ascent, it can also add juice to a stock’s decline.
“It cuts two ways: It creates crash ups, but if those stocks begin to trade lower, the dealers then sell,” said Charlie McElligott, a cross-asset strategist at
Many Reddit users show no signs of worrying that the upward trajectory of meme stocks may abruptly reverse. Clover Health has become a favorite in recent days for people determined to engineer another battle against hedge funds, sending its stock up roughly 59% this week.
“$CLOV this is the perfect setup for an epic short squeeze,” a user called u/mamagpepper wrote on WallStreetBets on Wednesday, referring to Clover Health’s stock ticker. Clover Health recently had around 10% short interest.
This time around, short sellers may be more cautious about going up against retail traders, whose wagers generally ignore metrics like the profit and sales outlook.
“Hedge funds are scared to have holdings on significant short positions [in meme stocks], even if fundamentally it makes a lot of sense,” said Lorenzo Di Mattia, chief investment officer of Sibilla Capital. “The AMC stock is probably worth $10, but that doesn’t mean it’s going there any time soon. With the retail army not really knowing anything about valuation, the risk is much bigger than normal.”
AMC traded at $42.81 at the end of Thursday.
Individual investors aren’t necessarily targeting their efforts on the most shorted stocks.
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which soared in popularity in January, has a short interest of about 31% of its total outstanding, according to IHS Markit. But the stock has largely lost its shine on WallStreetBets since the start of 2021, and wasn’t among the past week’s most popular stocks, according to TopStonks.com, which tracks equities mentioned on Reddit. Bed Bath shares are up over 77% this year.
Meanwhile, the potential to engineer a precipitous decline in some meme stocks is making bearish wagers more tempting for some investors.
Sibilla’s Mr. Di Mattia, is weighing placing wagers that AMC’s stock will drop in value.
“If it’s like GameStop in January, it could double again before it collapses: this is why it’s hard to short,” he said.
Weekly jobless claims, a proxy for layoffs, are also going out at 8:30. They have been on a downward trajectory over the past five weeks and economists are projecting a new pandemic low as the economy continues to recover.
retreated 2.6% in trading ahead of the opening bell, extending a three-day slide.
Issuance of green bonds hit a record $270 billion last year and is on pace to exceed that amount in 2021, according to data from the Climate Bonds Initiative.
The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note closed below 1.5%, its lowest level in more than three months, dragged down by tepid economic data and high demand from investors both in the U.S. and elsewhere.
dropped 4.2% premarket, after losing more than 16% in the prior session. The electric-truck startup disclosed that it doesn’t have sufficient cash to start full commercial production and has doubts about whether it can continue as a going concern through the end of the year.
edged up 0.3% premarket. E-commerce entrepreneur Ryan Cohen is slated to become the videogame retailer’s chairman on Wednesday, cementing his oversight of a company that is searching for a chief executive and seeking to manage expectations of shareholders bullish on its turnaround potential.
edged up 0.3% premarket. The supply-chain management and software company reported record bookings in its fiscal fourth quarter, while total revenue for the fiscal year declined 4% from the year prior.
Nearly $3 of every $10 of global equity inflows have been in ESG funds so far in 2021, according to Bank of America. Assets under management in the 1,900-plus global ESG funds tracked by the firm hit a record $1.4 trillion in April, more than double the amount from a year ago.
lost 1.7% after the online crafts marketplace proposed a private offering of $1 billion in convertible senior notes late Monday.
Traders last week spent $11.6 billion on options contracts tied to AMC Entertainment Holdings, more than on the SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust, Invesco QQQ Trust and Tesla Inc. combined, according to Cboe Global Markets data. Options on those stocks are typically among the market’s most popular.
Biogen shares surged 38% on Monday after U.S. regulators gave the green light to the drug known as aducanumab, the first such approval of any drug to treat Alzheimer’s in nearly two decades.
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman asked insurance companies to settle claims faster
Amid rising claims owing to the ravaging Coronavirus pandemic, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman held a review meeting with heads of insurance companies, under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Package (PMGKP) insurance scheme for health workers fighting the infection.
According to official sources, she asked insurers to accelerate the disbursement of pending claims under the Pradhan Mantri Jeevan Jyoti Bima Yojana (PMJJBY).
During the meeting which was held virtually, the Finance Minister noted that under the PMGKP scheme, a total of 419 claims have been paid as on date, amounting to Rs 209.5 crore disbursed in the account of their nominees.
To address the issue of delays arising out of states sending documents, Ms Sitharaman said that a new system has been put in place whereby a simple certificate from the District Magistrate (DM) and endorsed by the nodal state health authority will be sufficient to process these claims.
A total of 4.65 lakh claims have been paid amounting to Rs 9,307 crore under PMJJBY. Since the beginning of the pandemic that is April 2020 onwards till date, 1.2 lakh claims have been paid amounting to Rs 2,403 crore, at a disposal rate of 99 per cent.
The Finance Minister also took stock of the disposal of claims made under Pradhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojana (PMSBY) scheme.
A total of 82,660 claims have been settled under PMSBY amounting to Rs 1,629 crore as of May 31, 2021.
Appreciating the recent efforts made by insurance companies and banks in speedy processing of claims, she said that insurance company officials should continue being sympathetic while providing services to nominees of dead policy holders, especially during pandemic period.