Whatsapp likely to start digital payment service by end of February

WhatsApp may launch its much awaited payment feature by the end of February this year – thus providing the biggest boost so far to digital payments in India. The Facebook-owned messaging company is currently integrating its Unified Payments Interface (UPI) with prominent banks in the country such as HDFC, State Bank of India, ICICI and Axis bank.

WhatApp had obtained the green signal from the government to integrate with the UPI in July 2017. According to Economic Times, the feature is already in beta (testing) stages with one of the partner banks; depending on its performance during the trials, the service will be made available to the users. In the face of frequent reports of Aadhaar data leaks, the feature is undergoing rigorous security checks to ensure safety of user’s bank data. One of the senior bankers involved in the integration process told ET, “To be able to send money as easily as a text message involves ensuring various levels of encryption to keep the data safe.”

Once functional, WhatsApp will join the likes of Google Tez, PhonePe, Paytm, and the government’s BHIM app (Bharat Interface for Money). Being the most widely used social messaging app in India, it is expected to bring a large section of the previously inaccessible population of the country under the digital payment ecosystem.

UPI emerged as one of the fastest growing interfaces for performing online transactions following the demonetisation drive in November 2016.

Sources: Times Now, Economic Times

HDFC beats TCS in terms of market capitalization

Private lender HDFC has beat India’s largest service exporter TCS to the top in terms of market capitalization. In other words, market capitalization is the value of a company that gets traded on the stock market, which is then calculated by multiplying the number of shares in total by the current share price on the stock market.

According to reports, HDFC’s shares jumped up 53% this year and have been consistent every quarter. On the other hand, TCS’s shares have plummeted to a 4% growth, courtesy the slowdown in the IT sector.

This morning, the banks market value stood at Rs 4,71,323 crore, while TCS was not far behind at Rs 4,70,780.75 crore.

“HDFC Bank has a pre-eminent presence in the retail banking segment (50 per cent of loan book) and has been able to maintain strong and consistent loan book growth, gradually gaining market share. Going forward, economic recovery and improvement in consumer sentiment would be positive growth drivers for the bank’s loan growth, which will in turn drive its profitability, said brokerage Sharekhan in a note as reported in the Economic Times.

As of today, Reliance Industries Ltd is still the country’s most valued firm with a market cap of Rs5,33,818.72 crore and HDFC Bank at the second place, followed by TCS, ITC (Rs3,35,993.75 crore) and HDFC Ltd (Rs2,84,580.02 crore) in the top five list.

Sources: Firstpost, Economic Times

Image source: Livemint

Petrol pumps allow cashless transaction till January 13

In a big relief for the daily commuters, petrol pumps have deferred their decision of refusing card payments from Monday. Previously the decision taken owing to banks charging 1 per cent Merchant Discount Rate (MDR) for purchases; and was reversed till January 13 after government intervened.

MDR that is charged between 0.25 to 1 per cent on credit or debit cards was waived off by the government to promote cashless transactions. But after the expiry of the 50 day window the banks started to levy MDR on petrol pump owners.

Earlier All India Petroleum Dealers Association (AIPDA)barred card transactions from Sunday midnight as 1 per cent charge from the banks was hurting their profits, AIPDA’s president Ajay Bansal told the media that they were operating on a very thin margin and there was no way that they could have operated with that charge hanging on their heads.

Prior to this the banks namely ICICI, HDFC and Axis on Saturday sent notices to the dealers informing about the surcharge; the Tamil Nadu Petroleum Dealers Association termed it as an ‘unilateral’ move and they were the first to protest by not accepting plastic currency.

When the government stepped finally into the matter and deferred the decision till January 13 Union Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas Dharmendra Pradhan said that they have suggested the banks and oil marketing companies should resolve the dispute so that customers and petrol pump owners won’t have to face any charges and was quoted “Petrol pump owners have to follow government’s decision, there is no question on it. The issue will be resolved very soon”.

SOURCES-

1.DNA-http://www.dnaindia.com/money/report-to-protest-bank-transaction-fees-petrol-pumps-to-go-card-less-from-monday-2290407

2. THE HINDU-http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/Petrol-pumps-defer-decision-to-not-accept-card-payments/article17009853.ece

3.NDTV

Petrol pumps allow cashless transaction till January 13

In a big relief for the daily commuters, petrol pumps have deferred their decision of refusing card payments from Monday. Previously the decision taken owing to banks charging 1 per cent Merchant Discount Rate (MDR) for purchases; and was reversed till January 13 after the government intervened.

MDR that is charged between 0.25 to 1 per cent on credit or debit cards was waived off by the government to promote cashless transactions. But after the expiry of the 50 day window the banks started to levy MDR on petrol pump owners.

Earlier All India Petroleum Dealers Association (AIPDA)barred card transactions from Sunday midnight as 1 per cent charge from the banks was hurting their profits, AIPDA’s president Ajay Bansal told the media that they were operating on a very thin margin and there was no way that they could have operated with that charge hanging on their heads.

Prior to this the banks namely ICICI, HDFC and Axis on Saturday sent notices to the dealers informing about the surcharge; the Tamil Nadu Petroleum Dealers Association termed it as an ‘unilateral’ move and they were the first to protest by not accepting plastic currency.

When the government stepped finally into the matter and deferred the decision till January 13 Union Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas Dharmendra Pradhan said that they have suggested the banks and oil marketing companies should resolve the dispute so that customers and petrol pump owners won’t have to face any charges and was quoted “Petrol pump owners have to follow government’s decision, there is no question on it. The issue will be resolved very soon”.

News Source: Times Of India, DNA 

Image Source: NDTV