1. India to Get First Physical Gold Exchange in 2016
The Mumbai-based India Bullion and Jewellers Association (IBJA) has announced plans to launch India’s first physical gold trading exchange. This is an attempt to promote transparency in the market for the yellow metal. The exchange is planned for launch next year.
2. Delhi Records Highest Per Capita Income in India
Delhi has recorded the maximum per capita income among all the Indian states for the fiscal year 2014-15. Delhi’s per capita income saw a growth of 13.5% to Rs. 2.41 lakh from Rs. 2.12 lakh in the previous financial year.
3. Tax Rate on Cigarettes May Rise to 70%
The three-tier GST structure has recommended a “sin tax” rate of 40% on select items such as tobacco products. This could affect the price of cigarettes which are presently taxed at a rate of 48-64%. Under the three-tier structure, the tax on cigarettes could rise to 70%.
4. Equity MFs Surge Despite Volatile Markets
Despite volatility in the equity markets, equity mutual funds recorded a 1.5% rise in assets under management (AUM), to a new high of Rs 4,03,000 crore. Even though the domestic equity market saw a 2% drop, retail investors have continued to invest through mutual funds.
5. Deadline for Service Tax Payment Extended in Tamil Nadu
As a result of the floods in Tamil Nadu, the Service Tax Commmisionerate has announced an extension to the deadline for payment of Service Tax in the state. The last date for Service Tax payment has been extended to 20 December 2015.
6. E-Commerce companies Push for Exclusion from GST
India’s rapidly growing e-commerce companies are pushing for an exclusion from the Goods and Services Tax. E-Commerce retailers such as Amazon India, Flipkart and Snapdeal want to be viewed as service providers and should be allowed to pay GST only on service income.
7. Pending Tax Refunds to be Expedited
The Income Tax Department has directed its officers to ensure faster refunds of dues from past years. Under the new directive, refunds below Rs. 50,000 for AY 2013-14 and 2014-15 should be processed at the earliest.
8. GST Panel Recommends Standard Tax Rate of 17-18%
The GST Panel led by Chief Economic Adviser, Arvind Subramanian has suggested a three-tier structure with 17-18% standard tax on most goods and services. A 12% tax rate has been proposed for essential goods and a 40% rate has been suggested for demerit goods such as luxury cars.
9. Government Proposes 2% Skill Development Cess on Tax
The Union Minister for Skill Development, Rajiv Pratap Rudy has revealed that a 2% cess on individual and corporate income tax is being proposed, with the aim to fund the skill development program across the country.
10. GST May Lower Prices of Capital Goods
The Goods & Services Tax panel has revealed that India’s GDP could get a boost from capital goods becoming cheaper once the GST has been introduced. The prices of capital goods would become 12-14% cheaper, resulting in increased demand, leading to investment and growth. This could lead to the GDP increasing by 0.5%.