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April 30, 2012
COLUMN: Mirage of local empowerment
Poverty, unemployment and inequality are not problems that communities can solve on their own. Why Met dept's monsoon forecast goes haywire
The IMD projects total rainfall in the June-September monsoon season as being 99 per cent of the long-period average. Parting shots: The hostile exit letter as an art form
Every parting shot needs a 'so what?' Once the author has seized the attention of a reader with grief and loathing, one can press for action: change the direction of the enterprise.
April 26, 2012
People in slums? Here's a new deal
A third of urban India and half of some metros live in slums.
April 25, 2012
Column: Have non-government economists worked?
Has the experiment of appointing non-government economists worked?
April 24, 2012
Good politics makes for good economics
The right to enjoy the fruits of what one creates is at the heart of an individual's motivation to excel. When we defeat nature's way of motivating people, we defeat ourselves as a society, says Sonali Ranade Column: Is Bihar a special category state?
Separate fiscal consideration for special category states because of their hilly terrain imparts a cost disability in public service provision. The rising tide of Indo-Pak trade
Political tensions have cast a long and troubled shadow over cooperation between India and Pakistan. Cross-border terrorism, Kashmir and water rights remain the core issues of contention.
April 23, 2012
The debate about growth and deficits
The fiscal deficit is unsustainably high and the Budget has done precious little to offer a credible path for consolidation. What is holding back the stock market?
It is difficult to see valuations rise unless the institutional attitude, especially that of foreign investors, turns bullish again.
April 20, 2012
Can Didi convert Kolkata to London? Bah!
The West Bengal chief minister's dream of transforming her state's capital might prove difficult.
April 19, 2012
A new school bell rings in India
SC's upholding of the RTE Act could merely be the start of a battle, judging by the passionate voices being raised for and against it Why the Chinese currency is a bone of contention
The reformist wing of the current Chinese leadership should look to Zhu Rongji for a solution.
April 17, 2012
COLUMN: Oil price decontrol has become a farce
It will soon be two years since petrol was decontrolled, but few will happily celebrate this second birthday. SLOWDOWN gets serious: A grim future for India
As each month's economic numbers roll in, the slowdown gets more serious; and each month it gets clearer than before that government spokesmen who keep predicting an upturn are whistling in the dark.
April 16, 2012
Column: How CAG spotted the 2G spectrum scam
It is because of the Comptroller & Auditor General that we know all isn't well in the murky world of government purchases and the allocation of resources.
April 13, 2012
Why FDI won't make airlines more attractive for investors
Airplanes are fascinating and air travel is crucial for business and leisure. The number of people travelling by air has been increasing at double-digit levels over recent years. Low single-digit penetration provides adequate scope for growth. India's foodgrain stock to rise but much will rot
Too much grain, and no way to distribute it. 'Creative' reasons employees cite for taking leave!
Employees never run out of ideas on reasons for taking leave. Limits to growth and how to overcome them
We as a species are hitting global constraints imposed by Earth's ecological and bio-systems that we don't know how to mitigate or resolve as a species, says Sonali Ranade
April 12, 2012
IMAGES: What Mallya can learn from Buffett
Worst sort of business is one that grows rapidly, requires significant capital to engender the growth, and then earns little or no money, says Buffett. In 4 years, India has gone from shining to crawling
Four years ago India was riding high. COLUMN: China's economy booms, India lags
China's ascendancy has reached a point where India will have to play a delicate game of exercising autonomy in its pursuit of national objectives without provoking conflict. The shocking experience of taking a UID card!
Machines obey bumbling humanity in ageless India.
April 11, 2012
COLUMN: How Aadhar is transforming lives in Jharkhand
Aadhaar is helping in weeding fake beneficiaries from social welfare schemes and transforming lives across Jharkhand.
April 10, 2012
COLUMN: Why multitasking doesn't work
As the brain is forced to respond to several stimuli at the same time which results in the brain switching between tasks and thus losing time as it determines which task to perform.
April 09, 2012
COLUMN: A pension for the poor and elderly
Proponents of universal pension coverage argue that India is now a rich country with a large population of poor people. So resources are available but not adequately channeled to those who need them. COLUMN: Is India shining? Bah!
A lack of balance in economic policy, with a fiscal deficit that doubled from 2008 to now, and overemphasis on monetary policy to combat structurally high inflation, resulting in overly aggressive rate hikes, discouraging investment and impairing growth.
April 05, 2012
Column: Why Warren Buffett is WRONG about gold
"As Buffett puts it "Gold has some industrial and decorative utility, but the demand for these purposes is both limited and incapable of soaking up new production. Meanwhile, if you own one ounce of gold for an eternity, you will still own one ounce at its end." Rescuing the financial derivatives market from gamblers
No regulation of the derivatives market could work without a strong mandatory clearing mechanism that provides raw data on exposure and use to regulators in policing the markets for misuse and containing associated credit, market and other risks, says Sonali Ranade Economy needs ACTION, but the govt is SLEEPING
Government has been trying to get rid of the impression that it is caught in "policy paralysis". 'India CANNOT GROW, if Bihar lags behind'
Deputy CM says a lot has been achieved, but the state has to go a long way.
April 02, 2012
COLUMN: Why bosses like 'unhappy' employees
A simple way of keeping employees happy but with low self esteem is to create some self doubt in their minds. Three big worries for Indian stock investors
Confusion over India's new tax rules, slow rate cuts, and a weakening rupee could create a stock-picking environment.
March 30, 2012
Column: Lessons to learn from these success stories
All great companies determine success by their ability to bounce back.
March 29, 2012
COLUMN: Why China needs BRICS for the time being
The BRICS states need to pin down China on long-term norm-based values, ideas and concrete proposals and programmes for the mutual benefit of the constituent member states.
March 28, 2012
Column: How we can make Indian cities livable
Clean, reliable and timely public transport will go a long way in making and keeping towns and cities livable.
March 20, 2012
An energy sufficient India? A long road ahead
Today we are importing over 80 per cent of our oil needs which gets refined into kerosene, LPG, petrol, diesel, fuel oil, naphtha etc hence not only all our energy needs but also fertilisers and plastics needs are susceptible to international crude prices.
March 17, 2012
Budget 2012: More spend, yet no positive results
Spending has been increased again, but there's still no effort in the Budget to improve outcomes. A good move towards GST, but reforms neglected
This Budget must be complimented for having taken two very positive steps towards the goods and services tax, or GST. Budget 2012 fell short of the world's expectations
The fiery 'India Shining' and 'India Everywhere' slogans of a not-so-distant past may have been empty bluster, as the bravado has been replaced by a mood of despondency in the Indian business community. Budget 2012: Not a disaster but not enough, either
The Budget arithmetic seemed to be more realistic this time, though the final 5.9 per cent fiscal deficit will be more like 6.1 per cent for this year, and the target for 2012-13 of 5.1 per cent may be more like 5.3 per cent. Budget: Hike in shipping tonnage tax at the wrong time
The shipping industry unlike other industries attracts tonnage tax and the budget has proposed to increase the tonnage tax by more than 50% on various class of tonnage effective from April 1, 2013. A Budget for credibility
Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee was saddled with a number of handicaps when he presented the Union Budget 2012-13 on Friday morning. What makes MPs cheer on Budget day
One thing is clear from watching MPs on the Lok Sabha's biggest day: the only thing that unites them is the words "outlay was doubled". 'Budget 2012-Neither too cruel, nor too kind'
Pragmatism, perseverance, patience, persistence -- and a lot of detailed work. Wanted: A professional to bring Air India on track
It will require leadership with business experience, not a bureaucrat, for the loss-making carrier to get back on track. Budget: The FM could have been bolder
The FM could have been bolder, but this is still a forward-looking Budget.
March 16, 2012
Budget: A bandage for an amputee
A much stronger focus was required on irrigation and water management. The FM merely acknowledged that it was a problem. COLUMN: Budget is a big test for the UPA govt
The finance minister has to present a Budget that will revive investor confidence, restore fiscal balance and rescue the electoral prospects of his badly battered party.
March 13, 2012
UPA II: Dressing up to go nowhere
The methods being used by the government to window-dress the fiscal deficit will fool no one, least of all foreign investors or bodies like the IMF, warns Sonali Ranade
March 12, 2012
CRR rate cut welcome, but is it enough?
This cut was welcome not just for its well-planned timing, but also for its relative size; the RBI has, too often, moved with baby steps when strides are called for. FDI: At the mercy of lawmakers
The very basic assumptions are that the investment is within the contours of law and that there will be no inability in seeking a return in respect of the investment amount.
March 07, 2012
Why RBI must set a rupee band
The RBI should develop a plan for forex markets without worrying about its inflation-fighting reputation.
February 29, 2012
What happened to the Rs 94K cr that Indian NGOs received?
It is time the government woke up to the risks that uncontrolled foreign monies flowing to Indian NGOs pose to India's economic progress, social cohesion and national integrity.
February 28, 2012
Why Pranab needs to change India's subsidy regime
Budget ideas from industry are irresponsible
February 24, 2012
More turbulence likely in global markets
While Greece may well hang on through its next handout or two, it is hard to see how it can survive in the euro. Successful business? Thanks to 'core competence'
It is not certain whether management theories have a role in modern society. In fact, some of them need to be reconstructed.
February 17, 2012
Why Yunus likes to be known as promoter of social business
Mohammed Yunus is no longer known as the pioneer of micro finance or even a Noble Laureate. He prefers to be now known as a promoter and founder of 'social business.' This is a concept that Prof Yunus believes will help him fulfill his mission -- to remove poverty in a way that its traces are only found in museums.
February 16, 2012
COLUMN: Bigger bandwidth for a new spectrum SCAM
While Reliance/Infotel Broadband stands to gain if Qualcomm is forced out of the BWA race, will the potential Indian consumer of broadband wireless services gain from this unseemly tussle? That is a question that remains unanswered. The end of crony capitalism?
There are alternatives to auctions that also reduce discretion.
February 14, 2012
Here's how telecom story can develop...
The Supreme Court judgement on the telecom scam raises many questions. SPECIAL: Is 2G court order a clean chit or a long rope?
When an economic crime is carried out, it becomes difficult to figure out the role played by various parties.
February 10, 2012
Is the US economy recovering? Well not exactly
US data suggest recovery, but politics might intervene
February 09, 2012
The rise and fall of Kodak: Why it went bankrupt
Fifteen years ago, Kodak was the fourth most valuable brand in the world after Disney, Coca-Cola and Microsoft.
January 31, 2012
Should the govt cover up EPFO's inefficiency?
The 48-odd million employees covered by the Employees Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) may be touched that the finance ministry is actually considering a proposal to extend the organisation a fiscal helping hand to offer a rate of interest comparable with other savings instruments. What is holding back India's growth story?
Although the rising tide of growth has lifted all boats, the faster-growing, richer states have steadily pulled apart from the slower-growing, poorer states. Although this growing divergence has been observed during earlier periods as well, factors responsible for it are not fully understood.
January 27, 2012
Iranian crude for gold - Beginning of the END of dollar?
The macroeconomic implications of successful Iranian Bourse selling oil denominated in non-dollar terms are in fact profound for the world of finance. Why the Vodafone tax case assumes significance
The issue was whether India could tax capital gains arising from sale of shares of overseas companies merely because such companies had downstream subsidiaries in India.
January 26, 2012
COLUMN: Pirates of the modern world
Filtering of websites has now been introduced as a discussable topic. The current battle is about who will control the most visible and glamorous layer, the content layer.
January 24, 2012
Bihar progressing? Not really!
Bihar remains shackled by poverty even as agricultural growth increases.
January 23, 2012
Rising giants of Asia: How far is India behind China?
China's GDP in 2011 was $6.99 trillion, or nearly four times India's $1.84 trillion. Is retiring shares best avenue for RIL?
When Reliance Industries Limited announced its buyback recently, the stock price soared even before the details were made public. Rupee depreciation helps Indian IT companies
Software leaders are quite robust.
January 20, 2012
FDI in aviation: Is this a good move?
Foreign direct investment (FDI) in India's aviation sector is long overdue; the Cabinet should back Mr Singh's decision -- which was taken following a meeting with Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee, Petroleum Minister Jaipal Reddy and Commerce Minister Anand Sharma. Why a 'founder' of a company gets fired
Jerry Yang, who founded Yahoo along with David Filo in 1995, has left to "pursue other interests outside of Yahoo". Yang, who carried the designation "Chief Yahoo", exited two weeks after Scott Thompson, who used to run eBay's PayPal unit, joined as CEO. Government move to control Internet is wrong
Even attempting it would be a colossal waste of time and public resources.
January 19, 2012
Biz vs politics: Marwaris feel the heat of Mamata's hostility
Marwari community has chosen to portray Mamata Banerjee's patent bias against it after the AMRI Hospital fire as unfair persecution.
January 18, 2012
Village level innovation: The next BIG thing
Over the last twenty years it has even more passionately been argued that the future of India depends on rapid expansion on four fronts.
January 10, 2012
Aquarian Age: Bloom not Doom
While this apparent obsession with 2012 may largely be an internet phenomenon there is something more happening here that predates our age of hyper-connectivity.
January 09, 2012
Globalisation is dead. When will India realise this?
As the West realizes that globalisation has pauperised governments, left its society in disarray and its currency weak, there is a huge re-think there about the very idea of globalisation. COLUMN: Was India too timid to manage to FDI issues?
In the cacophony of debates on the wisdom of liberalising retail foreign direct investment, or FDI, one viewpoint was noticeably absent: whether and how this might affect India's strategic interests.
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