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MF shuffle looms after Amundi buy
French asset manager Amundi's purchase of Pioneer Investments last month has put a question mark over both the entities' investments in the domestic mutual fund (MF) space. Amundi, by virtue of its 37 per cent stake, is one of the sponsors of SBI MF. Similarly, Pioneer Investments is a sponsor of Baroda Pioneer MF, with 51 per cent stake. The global acquisition could deem Amundi as a sponsor of both the fund houses.

Stick to your MF distributor
If the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) acts on its proposal that no mutual fund (MF) distributor should advise investors before becoming a registered investment advisor (RIA), things would get trickier for investors who have been relying on distributors for a long time. To separate sales from investment advice, the market regulator has proposed that only RIAs offer advice to investors. And, despite protest and representations from different segments of the financial sector, Sebi has not budged.

A new committee for simplifying insurance
It has been more than 6 years since the life insurance industry embarked upon product regulations to address the problems of high costs, heavy exit penalties and poor insurance cover. The new product regulations—‘linked insurance product regulations’ and ‘non-linked insurance product regulation’—which looked at most of these issues came into effect in 2014. And now, 3 years later, the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (Irdai) has constituted a committee to review the provisions of these regulations.

Mutual funds hope for budget goodies
Mutual fund players are hopeful that the finance minister would offer them a few goodies in the forthcoming budget in February. "We have placed a few recommendations before the finance minister. We are hopeful that we will have some good news in this budget," said a senior mutual fund manager. "Apart from the change in taxation of debt funds in 2015, the budget didn't have much to offer to mutual funds for some time now," he added.

IPO grey market comes back to life with BSE's IPO
The grey market for initial public offers (IPOs) may be limping back to life post demonetisation. The BSE IPO set to open for public subscription on January 23, is already quoting at a 12-15% premium over the upper end of the price band of Rs 805-Rs 806 per share, set by the exchange and its merchant bankers.

Sebi prepares the market for Budget 2017
The Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) is likely to impose stricter margin trading rules on budget day to combat potential volatility, said two people aware of the matter, including an official with the regulator. The Union budget is scheduled to be presented on 1 February.

CPSE ETF catches investors eyes as fund outperforms
For investors, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is emerging as the best manager of companies. His government’s exchange traded fund of the top 10 state-owned firms has returned 31 per cent in the past year, more than double the gains in the benchmark stock index, data compiled by Bloomberg show. Investors who missed buying the fund three years ago will get an opportunity on Wednesday as Modi seeks to raise 45 billion rupees ($660 million) selling new units.

From junkets to knowledge
We are seeing a big push towards ‘right sales’ and investors are responding by using the systematic investment plan vehicle to rupee cost average their investments

Fund houses hunt value in depressed capital goods sector
The capital goods sector, which has put investors on wait for long with no signs of turnaround in sight, has suddenly found favour with the domestic mutual fund industry. A bulk of this money has gone into the capital goods major L&T, though the company is projected to report a drop in December quarter bottom line.

India's long running bond rally set to fizzle out
It’s getting increasingly hard for strategists to stay bullish on Indian bonds after the longest rally since 2003. Even as a banking system awash with cash continues to spur local demand for sovereign notes, Citigroup Inc. sees gains fizzling out in the second half of 2017 as the central bank’s monetary easing cycle draws to a close. Standard Chartered Plc expects a pick-up in inflation to spur bond losses in the July-December period.

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