Episode 451

Business News at 05:30 pm on 22nd March 2023

Listen to the latest business and finance news where we talk about how the share market performed today and the Hindustan Zinc share price. We also talk about Blackberry’s patent deals, Sri Lanka’s IMF bailout, and WhatsApp’s new group feature update.

Today’s Latest Business News at 05:30 pm on 22nd March 2023.

[Disclaimer: This transcript is auto-generated]

Let’s begin by decoding why Nifty, Sensex, Bank Nifty rose today. Nifty and Sensex surged in morning trade on Wednesday but pared some gains while holding crucial levels as investors awaited US Federal Reserve’s interest rate decision. The NSE Nifty 50 surged 100 pts or 0.6%, hitting an intraday high of 17,207.25; BSE Sensex climbed 350 pts to a day’s high of 58,418.78 and Bank Nifty rose 0.5% to 40,085.60. US Federal Open Market Committee will announce their decision today, late evening. Analysts attribute today’s rise to additional funding and buy-out measures by the US and European governments to calm down investors, giving hints that the banking crisis may have come under control.

In some more market news, Hindustan Zinc share price surged nearly 5%, touching an intraday high of Rs 325.25 on Wednesday after the company’s board on Tuesday approved a fourth interim dividend of Rs 26 per share for Financial Year 23, amounting to Rs 10,985.83 crore, with March 29 as the record date. The shares of Vedanta and LIC rose after the announcement as both companies hold stakes in HZL. The Hindustan Zinc’s shareholding pattern for the December 2022 quarter shows promoter Vedanta Ltd owns 2,74,31,54,310 shares of the company. Vedanta is expected to earn over Rs 7100 crore from the dividend. While LIC’s LICI Ulip Growth Fund owns 11,41,42,717 Hindustan Zinc shares. LIC is expected to earn over Rs 290 crore.

Meanwhile, BlackBerry Ltd said on Tuesday it would sell patents, primarily related to its mobile devices, for up to $900 million after the Canadian software company scrapped an earlier deal with Catapult IP Innovations Inc, Reuters reported. Malikie Innovations Ltd will buy the patents and pay $170 million in cash on deal closing, and another $30 million three years later. BlackBerry will also get annual cash royalties from the profits generated from the patents, relating to its messaging and wireless networking among others. Malikie is a newly formed unit of intellectual property monetization firm Key Patent Innovations Ltd. Blackberry said last year it was exploring other options to sell its patents as the planned deal with Catapult IP Innovations Inc was taking longer than usual to close, leading to a loss in exclusivity.

Moving on. Sri Lanka has received the first tranche of an IMF bailout programme, President Ranil Wickremesinghe told parliament on Wednesday, a Reuters report said. The crisis-ridden island nation was scheduled to receive a $330 million tranche, the first part of a nearly $3 billion bailout approved by the International Monetary Fund on Monday. The president said, quote, “This sets the stage for Sri Lanka to have better fiscal discipline and improved governance,” unquote. The IMF bailout is expected to catalyse additional support to the tune of $3.75 billion from the likes of the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank and other lenders. It clears the way for Sri Lanka to rework a substantial part of its $84 billion worth of public debt. State finance minister Shehan Semasinghe said in an interview that Sri Lanka is ready to engage in restructuring talks with bilateral and private creditors to recover debt sustainability as “soon as possible.”

Next up, technology. Facebook-owned chat app, WhatsApp, has launched new features to give group admins more control over the group chats. These features were announced by company CEO Mark Zuckerberg on his Instagram Broadcast channel. The company says that the new changes follow some of the major updates announced recently including making groups bigger, allowing admins to delete sent messages in a group and several other group-related key features. One of the features gives admins the ability to see all requests in one place so that it is easier to manage who can join the group. WhatsApp gets a new tool that gives admins ability to decide who is able to join a group. When an admin choses to share their group’s invite link, they now have more power to decide who should be let in the group. In addition to this, WhatsApp also gets new feature that lets users know which groups they have in common with someone. This feature aims to help users keep a tab of all the groups they are part of and avoid redundancy.

Lastly, Uno Minda, one of the leading global supplier of automotive solutions and systems to OEMs, has announced its Chief Financial Officer, Sunil Bohra has been awarded the Assocham Vibrant Bharat ‘CFO of the Year Award’. He has been awarded so under the central theme of ‘Bharat at 100: paving the way for inclusive and sustainable global growth’, for his vision, outstanding contribution to the business, especially in a globally difficult time of rising interest rates and inflation, the impact of geopolitical developments, administering cash flows in the midst of a recession, technology, tax, and regulatory environment.

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Business News at 05:30 pm on 22nd March 2023