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While bank fixed deposit rates are trending down, interest rates of small savings scheme continue to remain high. Small savings rates are reset by the government every quarter depending on the bond yield. Though bond yields have declined almost 65-100 basis points since April 2016, the government has not reduced the rates of small savings to the same extent.
Small savings is one of the most preferred investment options for risk-averse investors and many people depend on these instruments to generate income. As the interest rates are reset every quarter, the next round will be in March and the new rates will be applicable from April.

Public Provident Fund
Public Provident Fund (PPF) remains the most preferred option for individuals. The current interest rate of PPF is 8%. In fact, rate on bank fixed deposit with matching tenure is around 6.5%. A resident Indian can open a PPF account and the subscriber can even open another account in the name of minors, but the maximum investment limit will be R1.5 lakh by adding balance in all accounts.
With Falling Interest Rates On Bank Deposits, Here's Where You Can Invest For Higher Returns

Deposits made under PPF qualify for deduction from income under Section 80C of the I-T Act, where the ceiling is R1.5 lakh a year. The PPF account matures after 15 years and can be renewed every 5 years thereafter. Analysts say individuals should invest in PPF as it builds a tax-free retirement corpus.
The government has also relaxed the norms for premature withdrawal of the PPF account deposit for reasons such as higher education or treatment of serious ailments. The premature withdrawal will, however, be allowed only after the subscriber’s deposit scheme account has completed five years.
In fact, PPF is meant for those people who do not have any investment plans for their retirement like self employed and professionals as compared with the salaried class who contribute to Employees’ Provident Fund. Non-residents, however, cannot open a new account, but can continue their existing accounts till its maturity, without extensions. While premature closure of account is not allowed, one can withdraw money every year from seventh financial year from the year of opening the account.

Sukanya Samriddhi Account
Sukanya Samriddhi Account (SSA) enables parents of girl child to build a corpus for her education and marriage expenses. The account can be opened with a minimum deposit of R1,000, after which the guardian can deposit any amount in multiples of R100. The upper limit of deposit in a financial year is R1.5 lakh. Like PPF, an individual who invests in SSA will get tax deduction at the time of investment every year and even the returns generated will be tax-free. The current interest rate on SSA is 8.5%.

Post office deposits and NSC
The current rate of one-year post office term deposit rate is 7%. Similarly, the five-year post office term deposit rate is 7.8%. In contrast, the rate on bank fixed deposit with matching tenure is 6.5%. The three-year post office deposit rate is 7.3%. The five-year fixed deposit will fetch 7.9% as against 8.5% at present. However, the interest amount earned is taxable according to the individual’s income tax slab.

The interest rate on five-year National Savings Certificate (NSC) is 8%. An individual can invest as minimum as R00 and there is no maximum limit for investment under NSCs. One can use NSCs as collateral to get loans.

Source- The Financial Express

India Post Payments Bank (IPPB) Interim MD and CEO Appointed



In order to provide digital payment options to the customers of India Post, the Department has approached the largest Bank in the country viz. State Bank of India to provide the Point of Sale (POS) terminals which can be used to make card-based payments. These POS machines will be initially used to book domestic and foreign speed post, Registered Letters/Parcels, Money Orders & buying stamps and any other transactions being done by Post Offices (except Banking/Insurance transactions).


The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) said on Wednesday it would remove the cash withdrawal limit from ATMs and savings accounts from March 13.

 Cash withdrawal limit from savings bank accounts will be relaxed to Rs 50,000 from February 20 to March 13, after which it will be removed, RBI deputy governor R Gandhi said after the monetary policy meeting.

Several limits on cash withdrawals from banks and ATMs were imposed after the government’s surprise move to demonetise Rs 500 and Rs 1000 on November 8, 2016.

Earlier, on January 30, RBI had allowed withdrawal upto Rs 24,000 from savings accounts. This was preceded by the relaxation on January 16 when the limit was raised to Rs 10,000 per day from Rs 4,500.

The government has been saying the amount of currency in circulation would remain lower that what it was before November 8 even after remonetisation is completed, a move aimed at encouraging people to go cashless and adopt digital payment methods.


Revenue deficit of the Department of Post (DoP) widened to Rs 8,670 crore in the April-December period of this fiscal, but various initiatives - including passport facility and other government services through post - are expected to rake in more revenue.

The DoP had registered a revenue deficit of Rs 6,007 crore in the fiscal year 2015-16, as per data shared by Communications Minister Manoj Sinha.

The revenue deficit of the postal department was Rs 5,473 crore in 2013-14 which increased to Rs 6,259 crore in 2014-15 and then narrowed to Rs 6,007 crore in 2015-16.

Total revenue of the DoP was Rs 9,307 crore at the end of December 2016. The department registered revenue of Rs 10,730 crore in 2013-14, Rs 11,636 crore in 2014-15 and Rs 12,940 crore in 2015-16.

Sinha said that various measures havve been taken by the department to boost its revenue.

"Railway tickets are being sold through post offices under an agreement signed with the Ministry of Railways. Presently, this service is available in over 340 post offices across India. Around 70 Post Shoppes have been opened with total revenue generated around Rs 60 lakhs," Sinha said.

He said that Government of India has introduced Sovereign Gold Bond scheme (SGB) in the Union Budget 2015-16.

"During the six tranches issued in last and current financial year, 96,215 Sovereign Gold Bond applications for around Rs 80 crore were collected through Post Offices across the country," Sinha said.

He mentioned distribution of sourcing of Gangajal from Gangotri and Rishikesh through Post Offices as well as online through 'e Post Office' has commenced.

"In order to extend passport services to our citizens on a larger scale and to ensure wider area coverage, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) and the DOP have now agreed to utilise the Head Post Offices in the various states as Post Office Passport Seva Kendra (POPSK) for delivering passport related services to the citizens," Sinha said.

He said the pilot project for this joint venture between MEA and DOP has commenced from January 25, 2017 at Metagalli Post Office, Mysore in Karnataka and at Dahod Head Post Office in Gujarat.

"Technology induction leading to customer friendly initiatives such as premium due alerts etc. In sum, all these above initiatives would go a long way to fet ch more business and generate more revenue," Sinha said.

Source:-The Economic Times

Deposits more than Rs 5,000 in old notes allowed just once per account until December 30, 2016

To check the laundering of unaccounted for cash through bank accounts, the RBI on Monday said that deposits totaling more than Rs 5,000 in old Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes can be made only once per account until December 30.

However, there is no limit on the value of deposits of new bank notes — also called specified bank notes — under the Taxation & Investment Regime for Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana (PMGKY) 2016.

If someone has more than Rs 5,000 in old notes, a deposit will only be allowed after the depositor satisfactorily answers why they couldn't put the money into their account earlier.

In the event that someone tries to make multiple deposits in amounts smaller than Rs 5,000 - to try and circumvent the system - they can't, as they will be held up to the same scrutiny as if they went just once with more than Rs 5,000.

While deposits more than Rs 5,000 in new notes will be allowed, they will be credited only to KYC-compliant accounts, the RBI said. If accounts are not KYC compliant, these deposits may be restricted up to Rs 50,000. These restrictions, however, won't apply to deposits of new notes under the Taxation and Investment Regime for the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana, 2016.