RBI governor's advice to banks:
Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Shaktikanta Das has advised banks to maintain the credit flow despite the second wave of infections picking up.
In a meeting with bank chiefs, he also pressed upon the need of creating buffers against possible business losses. Bad loans in the banking system are likely to rise in this quarter after the Supreme Court granted permission to recognize the non-performing assets (NPA).
The banks must maintain the flow of credit to maintain the momentum. If the banks turn cautious and stop the flow of credit, it will hamper the already struggling economy.
Sputnik V emerges out of nowhere:
The Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) has approved the usage of the Sputnik V vaccine under the emergency use authorization procedure. The approval is given based on results of clinical trials in Russia and additional Phase III local clinical trials in India.
After this approval, the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) announced that more than 85 crore doses of the Sputnik V vaccine are going to be produced annually in India.
Sputnik V's approval will provide relief at a time when India is facing a shortage of vaccines. Sputnik V has been approved by 60 countries, including India. And covers about 40% of the global population. In India, this vaccine will be produced in partnership with Dr Reddy's Laboratories.
Climbing rate of unemployment
India's unemployment rate jumped to a 15-week high of 8.58% as on April 11. Urban unemployment rate rose 260 basis points to 9.81% over the week, as per the data from Centre for Monitoring the Indian Economy (CMIE).
Rural unemployment, however, eased to 8% from 8.58% in the previous week. There is a sudden rise in unemployment in salaried jobs, down by nearly 1 crore as per Mahesh Vyas, MD, and CEO at CMIE.
The current trend is similar to what panned out last year under the impact of lockdown. The country’s unemployment rate had peaked to 27% in May last year as the strict lockdown was imposed across the country.
The unemployment rate had fallen to 4.66% in January this year but it has risen again following the rapid spike in the new Covid-19 cases.