Inflation at seven-month high in June
The point-to-point inflation rate in June went up by 0.67 percentage points to 6.02 per cent, a seven-month high, due to a significant jump in the urban consumer price index (CPI), official data showed on Monday. The inflation rate in the urban areas swelled by 1.20 percentage points to 6.03 per cent last month (June) from that of 4.81 per cent in May, the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS) data showed. Meanwhile, the 12-month average inflation rate was also recorded higher to 6.5 per cent in the last fiscal year (FY), 2019-20, following the significant jump at the year-end, the BBS data showed. The average inflation was higher than the government target of 5.50 per cent for the last FY. In the previous FY, the average inflation was recorded at 5.48 per cent. The BBS Director General MdTajul Islam told the FE on Monday that higher rice prices and supply chain disruption due to flood and rainfall were the major reasons behind rise in inflation in June.
Dhaka Bank shapeshifting with pandemic
When the majority of banks are struggling to survive from the ongoing financial meltdown brought on by the coronavirus pandemic, Dhaka Bank has introduced a novel banking product that will help clients open their account from home. The lender rolled out the product named “Account from Home” in mid-May to help clients open accounts by way of maintaining social distance, EmranulHuq, managing director of the bank, told The Daily Star in an interview recently. The agents of the lender now deliver welcome pack at customers’ doorstep (maintaining health and safety standard) including free debit card and cheque book and collect documents with their signature. The banks’ accounts are increasing at a faster pace after the product’s launch, Huq said. The lender, which marked its 25th anniversary on July 5, invested nearly $7 million last year to upgrade its online platform as part of its effort to make both the digital and virtual banking vibrant.The move is allowing clients to submit all export and import-related documents digitally. The businesses are being allowed to carry out trade-related procedures just by turning up at a branch once. The bank, which commenced its commercial operation in 1995, is one of the leading players in trade-based financing in Bangladesh. It accounts for more than 3 per cent of the country’s total trade volume. Dhaka Bank initially started its journey with only one corresponding bank to do its foreign exchange related banking, but the number now stands at 450, in what can be viewed as the lender’s growing acceptance across the globe. “We are maintaining a credit line with 30 global banks and two multilateral organisations – International Finance Corporation and the Asian Development Bank. They have provided a remarkable amount of guarantee and funded loans due to Dhaka Bank’s strong brand image, said Huq, who was promoted to the post of MD in February from the previous position of additional managing director. He has been with Dhaka Bank for 23 years now. The lender is now campaigning to popularising its online product namely “Dhaka Bank Go” such that clients do their banking smoothly including inter-bank fund transfer, utility bill payment, mobile phone recharge and pay tuition fee for educational purpose.
Gas exporters book 90pc capacity of key pipeline link from Russia via Poland
Gas exporters have booked almost 90 per cent of the capacity of the Yamal-Europe pipeline’s Polish section in the period from Oct. 1 this year and Sept. 30 2021, data showed on Monday, suggesting Russia will continue to pump gas to Europe via the link. A gas transit deal between Russia and Poland dating back to the 1990s expired on May 17 as Warsaw aligned its energy regulations with European Union rules and moved to curb its decades-old dependence on Russian fuel.
BRAC Bank introduces digital healthcare campaign for women
BRAC Bank has introduced a special campaign on digital healthcare for its TARA customers. TARA is BRAC Bank’s women banking solution. Under this campaign, a TARA customer can avail TARA digital healthcare package free of cost for 12 months upon opening a TARA Flexi DPS. To avail free package, the customer’s monthly installment for the Flexi DPS has to be more than BDT 3,500 with a tenure of 3 years and above. The package will be activated within 10 working days after the TARA Flexi DPS is opened.
Regulatory move for ensuring mandatory shareholding rules
Stocks rebounded on Monday with key index hitting one-month high as optimistic investors went on buying binge at the lowest possible prices riding on the regulatory move for ensuring mandatory shareholding rules.Stocks rebounded on Monday with key index hitting one-month high as optimistic investors went on buying binge at the lowest possible prices riding on the regulatory move for ensuring mandatory shareholding rules.DSEX, the key index of the Dhaka Stock Exchange, went up by 13.13 points or 0.32 per cent to settle at more than one month high at 3,994, since June 1.The stock market regulator has asked 61 directors of 22 listed companies to ensure a minimum 2.0 per cent shares in their own companies within 45 days to continue their directorship.According to the rules, if any director fails to comply with the 2.0 per cent shareholding rules, his/her position would be automatically vacated.Buy pressure on general insurance, banking and pharma stocks propped the index up, commented UCB Capital, in its regular market analysis.The stock market regulator’s ultimatum to 61 directors of 22 listed firms to ensure holding of minimum 2.0 per cent shares led the buy pressure, particularly on general insurance sector, as most of the directors that fell under radar from this sector, said the UCB analysis.According to media reports, of the 22 companies, 14 are from the insurance sector, which have 49 non-compliant directors.Two other indices also edged higher. The DS30 index, comprising blue chips, rose 6.60 points to finish at 1,342 and the DSE Shariah Index advanced 0.91 points to close at 921.Turnover, another important indicator of the market, stood at Tk 1.50 billion on the country’s prime bourse, climbing by 104 per cent over the previous day’s turnover of Tk 734 million.According to International Leasing Securities, many investors went for buying shares riding on the regulatory move to ensure holding of a minimum 2.0 per cent share in their own companies within 45 days.The stockbroker noted that some optimistic investors showed their buying appetite based on latest quarterly earnings declarations and to gain some dividend yield. Market analysts, however, said the most of investors remained worried about the adverse impact of worsening pandemic situation with looming uncertainty about economic growth and the regulator-enforced floor price system.Of the issues traded, 216 remained unchanged while 57 issues advanced and 23 declined on the DSE floor.Among the major sectors, insurance posted the highest gain of 1.30 per cent, followed by banking with 0.70 per cent, pharma 0.30 per cent and ceramic 0.10 per cent.A total number of 25,022 trades were executed in the day’s trading session with a trading volume of 47.69 million shares and mutual fund units.The market-cap on the premier bourse also rose to Tk 3,120 billion on Monday, from Tk 3,115 billion in the previous session.BeximcoPharma topped the turnover chart with shares worth Tk 104 million changing hands, followed by Square Pharma, Indo-Bangla Pharma, Bangladesh Submarine Cable and WataChemicals.Pubali Bank was the day’s best performer, posting a gain of 10 per cent while Beximco Synthetics was the worst loser, losing 6.25 per cent.The Chittagong Stock Exchange also ended higher with its All Shares Price Index (CASPI)-advancing 32 points to close at 11,338 and the Selective Categories Index – CSCX -gaining 21 points to finish at 6,866.Of the issues traded, 36 gained, 16 declined and 67 remained unchanged on the CSE. The port city bourse traded 2.35 million shares and mutual fund units with turnover value of Tk 891 million.