Google’s trust issues

2.42 billion Euro

What is it? The fine imposed by European antitrust authorities on Google for having used its dominant search engine to direct traffic to its shopping comparison service.

Why is it important? Order will benefit non-Google price comparison service providers who lost out because of Google’s practice of promoting its own service ahead of generic search results. The fine amount is the largest imposed by any antitrust body.

Tell me more: European Commission found traffic to Google’s own shopping service increased manifold (45% in the United Kingdom), whereas rival websites have witnessed sudden drop in traffic (85% in the United Kingdom).


Rs 2,199 crore

What is it? The title sponsorship fee for five years of the Indian Premier League (IPL), the league T20 cricketing tournament. BBK Electronics-owned Vivo won the bid.

Why is it important? The Chinese phone brand retained its sponsorship rights with the bid, which it won after PepsiCo withdrew in 2015 following corruption charges in IPL. The earlier Vivo contract was for Rs 200 crore for two years. The current one marks a 340% average yearly jump, while BCCI says it is a 554% jump over the previous contract.

Tell me more: Vivo beat sister company, Oppo whose bid was worth Rs 1,432 crore.


2 billion

What is it? The number of monthly active users on Facebook, the largest social networking site, which it reached late on Tuesday night.

Why is it important? The number of users, who have logged onto Facebook or its Messenger app at least once in the last one month, is more than the population of any country and even more than that of six continents, except Asia.

Tell me more: Facebook’s new users are growing at 17%, fast for a 13-year-old Internet company and 66% of its monthly users return daily, up from 55% when it had touched 1 billion users.


What is it? The maximum holding of any non-promoter investor can have in Reliance Industries (RIL), after the company gets shareholders’ approval on July 21.

Why is it important? RIL will have to take this step in order to meet the central bank’s terms and conditions before starting its payments bank. It owns 70% stake in the new venture, with State Bank of India holding 30%. The central bank’s prior permission is needed if non-promoters increase equity stake beyond 5%.

Tell me more: RIL plans to amend its Articles of Association at the annual general meeting. The state insurer, Life Insurance Corporation of India holds 8.31% in RIL.



What is it? The number of government departments to be completely computerised in the next few days.

Why is it important? With 100% digitisation, these departments will turn into e-offices with electronic record-keeping, doing away with unwieldy physical records and obsolete papers. The government’s efforts at digitising records have already resulted in 462,000 e-files, compared to last year’s 8,000.

Tell me more: The cumbersome processes of affidavits and attestation have been done away with in 58 central ministries/departments and 33 states and union territories.

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News in Numbers, Nov 10, 2016: He paid less, much less…

< $5

What is it? The amount US President-elect Donald Trump likely paid per vote, according to a Reuters analysis campaign finance records and voting data. This is on the assumption that the candidates spent all the money raised.

Why is it important? This is about half of what Democratic Party nominee Hillary Clinton spent per vote. Until mid-October, Trump’s campaign committee spent around $238.9 million versus Clinton’s $450.6 million. This works out to be around $859,538 per an electoral vote for Trump and $1.97 million per an electoral vote for Clinton (this doesn’t include spending between October 20 and until election day). Trump got about $5 billion worth of free media coverage during the campaign, which is more than twice of what Clinton got, according to data analytics firm mediaQuant.

Tell me more: Interestingly, Trump also spent lesser than the campaigns of President Barack Obama ($630.8 million) and Mitt Romney ($360.7 million).


Rs 2.5 lakh

What is it? The limit above which cash deposits made till December 30 in a bank account will be reported to the tax department by banks.

Why is it important? After having banned old currency denominations of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 effective Tuesday midnight, the government had announced that one could deposit the old notes in the banks between November 10 and December 30. The authorities would then match the deposits with the income tax returns of the depositors and any mismatch would be treated as a case of tax evasion. The tax amount and a penalty of 200% of the tax payable would be levied. Jewelers are being given instructions to note the PAN numbers of their buyers and the government would take action against those who do not comply with this.

Tell me more: There is a format that has been created to collect information from the depositors and CCTV cameras would be installed to keep track of them. In addition, banks have also appointed nodal officers to deal with situations as and when they arise.


202 crore

What is it? The number of currency notes in Rs 100 denomination that would be fed into ATMs over the next few days.

Why is it important? As many as 12,000 cash vans would reportedly carry these notes and on their return trips, they would carry 1,300 notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 denominations (approximately, worth Rs 8.5 lakh crore). This is probably the largest amount of cash that has ever hit the Indian roads at the same time. However, such a seamless operation is possible only if enough Rs 100 notes are supplied on time to banks, cash in transit operators and ATM service providers.

Tell me more: There is likely to be inconvenience for customers who wish to withdraw Rs 100 notes as most ATMs have cassettes (used to dispense cash) that can hold up to only 2,250 notes at a time. And, again, most of these are fitted with four cassettes, which means these ATMs can dispense about Rs 9 lakh when they are fully filled up.


Rs 1 lakh crore

What is it? The amount the Karnataka government plans to invest in the development of irrigation projects.

Why is it important? The southern state has been facing its second consecutive drought year, which is also the sixth straight year of deficient rainfall. Karnataka, which is involved in river disputes with six states, has been seeking about 28% of its drought-related losses of Rs 12,125.79 crore this year in disaster relief. The number of farmer suicides has increased from 122 in 2014-15 to a record 1,461 in 2015-16, which the government officials attribute to crop losses, drought and pressure from private money lenders.

Tell me more: The new estimates of irrigation spending are double of the earlier outlay and the escalation in costs is due to delays in completion of existing projects and addition of new ones.



What is it? The growth forecast for the euro zone in 2017, according to the European Commission.

Why is it important? This is lower from the 1.8% growth predicted by the body in May thanks to Britain’s exit from the European Union, political uncertainty and weak global trade. Investment is expected to rebound in 2018 and is forecast to grow by 3.3% this year, 3.1% in 2017 and 3.5% in 2018.

Tell me more: The UK economy is expected to grow 1.9% in 2016 and this is expected to fall to 1% in 2017, which is almost half of what the Commission had forecast in its previous estimates before the country voted to leave the European Union.

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News in Numbers, May 5, 2016: India’s tobacco rules, Flipkart’s valuation marked down…


What is it? The percentage of a cigarette pack’s surface that must be covered with health warnings, up from 20% earlier, as ruled by the Supreme Court on Wednesday.

Why is it important? It could discourage smoking in India, which kills around a million people every year. But it might not have any impact on people buying cigarettes in loose –  pegged at over 80% , even though there have been attempts to ban selling them in loose.

Tell me more: Still, this could make a dent in the revenues of cigarette makers such as ITC and VST Industries. Over two dozen cases have been filed against this move and by Supreme Court’s Wednesday order, would be transferred to the Karnataka High Court, which has to decide on the matter within six weeks. An estimated 45.7 million people including farmers, workers and traders are dependent on this industry.


What is it? The amount a European nation is to pay per refugee if it wants to exempt itself from hosting them, to another country that accommodates them, according to a proposal by European Commission.

Why is it important? This is meant to achieve fair distribution of refugees among its member nations. The continent is battling one of the worst migrant crises where some member nations have seen an influx of people, mainly from West and South Asia and Africa, in a bid to escape violence or conflict in their home countries.

Tell me more: According to the proposal, each country would be assigned a share of the asylum-seekers based on the size of their economy and population and if relocation exceeds 1.5 times the allocated share, then they would be redirected to other member states. These proposals need to be approved by the European Parliament and a majority of the 28-member countries of the European Union.


What is it? The percentage by which US mutual fund Fidelity Rutland Square Trust II, Flipkart’s minority investor, marked down the ecommerce firm’s valuation (as of February this year from August 2015).

Why is it important? With another mutual fund Valic Co 1 also marking down Flipkart’s valuation by 29.4% during the same period, this mirrors the markdowns by Flipkart’s major investors – Morgan Stanley and T Rowe Price. With analyst concerns about rapidly increasing valuations of new-age firms (including Flipkart), they have been struggling to raise funds at their preferred valuations.

Tell me more: Sachin Bansal, Flipkart’s Executive Chairman and co-founder, has brushed this off as a ‘theoretical exercise’.


What is it? The number of acquittals in the 725 cases decided by the Delhi High Court between in 2011.

Why is it important? The 80% acquittal rate raises question about thoroughness of investigations. The court pointed to the shortage of manpower and forensic labs. Three fifth of 14,270 cases decided by the sessions courts in Delhi also resulted in acquittals.

Tell me more: The Delhi Police Force is top-heavy (more officers than sanctioned) while lower positions face shortage. There are only two forensic labs in Delhi with over 8,500 samples pending for testing.


What is it? Uttar Pradesh’s share of educational grants for minorities between 2008-09 and 2013-14 received from Maulana Azad Education Foundation, an organisation to promote education among backward communities.

Why is it important? The Foundation comes under central government, and the concentration of recipients in one state reflects unfair distribution of funds. A report by a report by the Tata Institute of Social Sciences has recommended that the allocations be made on the basis of the share of backward community population in districts/states and in total minority population.

Tell me more: Except for Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra (received 10.9% of the educational grants during this period), the share of most other states are miniscule. The distribution of grants is unequal within states too. For instance, of the top 25 districts that received the highest grant amounts, half of them are from Uttar Pradesh.

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