- Brent Crude: It serves as the most widely used benchmark that defines oil prices around the world. The term “Brent” refers to the Brent oil field, which was discovered in the 1970s and became a significant source of oil production.
About two-thirds of all internationally traded crude oil supplies are priced relative to Brent, making it the most widely used marker of all. It is a light, sweet crude oil extracted from different oil fields in the North Sea. Its unique properties, low density and low sulphur content, make Brent crude oil simpler to process into products such as gasoline.
As its supply is water-borne, Brent crude oil is easy to transport to distant locations.
The Brent Crude oil price is influenced by various factors, including supply and demand dynamics, geopolitical events, production disruptions, and economic factors.
- India Post Payments Bank (IPPB): IPPB has been established under the Department of Posts, Ministry of Communication, with 100% equity owned by the Government of India.
IPPB was launched on September 1, 2018, aimed at making banking services available at people’s doorstep.Its mandate is to remove barriers for the unbanked and under-banked and reach the last mile, leveraging a network comprising 160,000 post offices (145,000 in rural areas) and 400,000 postal employees.Headquarters: New Delhi.The operations of IPPB will be on a smaller scale as compared to other banks and will not advance loans or issue credit cards to avoid risk. It will accept deposits, offer remittance services, mobile payments/transfers/purchases and other banking services like ATM/debit cards, net banking and third-party fund transfers.
It will accept deposits upto Rs 2 lakh, beyond which the account will be automatically converted into a post office savings account. The products and services of the bank will be made available through various mediums such as counter services, micro ATMs, mobile banking apps, messages, and interactive voice responses. The IPPB will use Aadhaar to open accounts, and a QR card and biometrics will be used for authentication, transactions, and payments.
- Payments Banks: A payments bank is like any other bank but operates on a smaller scale without involving any credit risk. It was set up on the recommendations of the Nachiket Mor Committee. Its objective is to widen the spread of payment and financial services to small businesses, low-income households, and migrant labor workforce in a secured technology-driven environment. They are registered under the Companies Act 2013 but are governed by a host of legislations such as the Banking Regulation Act, 1949; RBI Act, 1934; Foreign Exchange Management Act, 1999, etc. It needs to have a minimum paid-up capital of Rs. 100,00,00,000.It can take deposits up to Rs. 2,00,000. It can accept demand deposits in the form of savings and current accounts. The money received as deposits can be invested in secure government securities only in the form of Statutory Liquidity Ratio (SLR).This must amount to 75% of the demand deposit balance. The remaining 25% is to be placed as time deposits with other scheduled commercial banks. It can offer remittance services, mobile payments/transfers/purchases, and other banking services like ATM/debit cards, net banking, and third-party fund transfers. It cannot issue loans and credit cards. It cannot accept time deposits or NRI deposits. It cannot set up subsidiaries to undertake non-banking financial activities.