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Besides the above mention topics, (which you can click on the above topics or scroll down), we have included some in-depth coverage of following topics on our feature pages. To read these write-up click on the following topics:

How to write a radio play

History of Urdu Journalism in India

History of Oriya Journalism

History of Hindi Journalism in India

History of Telgu Journalism in India

WHAT’S JOURNALISM

Journalism is the profession of writing or communicating. Journalists report, produce, and deliver the news for print, wire service, TV, radio and online media.

Journalists are expected to use facts to describe events, ideas, or issues that are relevant to the public. They gather information and broadcast or print it so we remain informed about local, state, national, and international events. They also express their view on current issues in opinion columns.
To make students understand various aspects of journalism, we present here a brief description of different categories of journalism – Print, Online, Broadcast and Wires.

Print Journalism: Print Journalism means writing news, views, features and columns etc, for newspaper and magazines (Click on the newspapers and magazines sections of this website for a complete list of Indian and international newspapers and magazines). Journalists, who work for newspaper and magazine, are known as print journalists. They are designated according to their job profiles. If they are into reporting, then they are designated as reporter, correspondent, special correspondent, principal correspondent, chief reporter, bureau chief. If they are into desk job then their designations will be sub-editor, chief sub-editor, deputy news editor, news editor, assistant editor. They can further move up on the ladder to become business editor, sports editor, city editor, feature writer, feature editor, executive editor, resident editor and editor. Reporters file the news and desk persons edit the copy and make them ready for publication. To know more about the making of a newspaper and magazine, must read How To Become A Good Journalist.

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Broadcast Journalism: Broadcast Journalism means presentation of news and current affairs programmes for television and radio. Radio and television reporters often compose stories and report "live" from the scene. Television journalists have to edit the video material that has been shot alongside their story. Some of the famous Indian colleges for broadcast journalism are:

AJ Kidwai Mass Communication Research Centre (New Delhi), Indian Institute of Mass Communication (New Delhi) and Symbiosis Institute of Media Studies (Pune). To know about more mass communication institutes/colleges, click on the colleges section of the site.

A website for radio newswriting www.newscript.com can be helpful for those who want to have a career in radio. It is an online tutorial on the craft of radio journalism, with particular attention to the writing of news scripts. It can also help radio journalists improve their skills as writers and anchors. In India, Indian Institute of Journalism and New Media, Bangalore, (http://www.iijnm.org/radio-journalism.htm) offers a post-graduate course in radio. There are several others institutes. Click on the colleges section of this site.

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To understand radio journalism read International Radio Journalism (published by Taylor and Francis Ltd). It is both a textbook and a practical guide for students of radio journalism, reporters, editors and producers. It also explores the way radio has covered the most important stories this century. To know more about books on broadcast journalism, click on the books section of this site.

Wire Services: Wire services or news agencies provide news to publications, broadcasters and media houses by the minute. They have tie-ups with news organisations, which pay them for the content that they provide. The public has no direct access to their content, unless it is carried by a newspaper, magazine, website or radio and television channel. Some of the famous Indian and international news agencies are:

INDIA
Press Trust of India (PTI)
United News of India (UNI)
IANS
ANI

INTERNATIONAL
Reuters
Agence France Press  (AFP)
Associated Press (AP)
Dow Jones Newswires
http://www.djnewswires.com
Bloomberg

To get a comprehensive list of International news agencies, see the News Agencies section of this site.

Online Journalism: Like newspaper and magazine, reporting, news selection, editing and rewriting, etc, are also the integral part of online journalism. But usage of technological components differs it from print. Technology and speed are the most important factors of online journalism. Online journalist has to upload news, views as quickly as possible. Unlike newspaper or magazine, there is no deadline in online. The sooner the better rule prevails in this medium of journalism. Now, almost every newspaper, magazine and television channel (see newspapers, magazines, TV channels sections for weblink) has a separate online team to update their sites. Besides that, there are several online news sites. Some of the famous news sites of India are:

www.rediff.com
www.indiatimes.com
www.twocircles.net

There are several news sites which cater to select areas/readers like

www.exchange4media.com
www.agencyafaqs.com
www.fanawatch.com
www.merinews.com
www.moneycontrol.com

click here 

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MASS COMMUNICATION

What is Mass Communication?
Mass Communication is the study of mass media, which includes all types of medium like newspapers, magazines, radio, television and films, etc, used to convey the information to the audience. The term “mass” suggests that the recipients of media products constitute a huge number of individuals. The aspect of “communication” refers to the transmission and reception of messages.

Senders in mass communication are journalists, producers and anchors, etc, employed by media houses. The content or message produced or prepared by them is for a mass (or a huge number of people). According to Marshall Macluhan and Stuart Hall’s book Mass Communication Theory, mass communication often involves simultaneous contact between one sender and many receivers, with a potential for immediate and uniform impact which other form of communication do not have. The book mentioned one definition (Janowiltz,1968), which says: “Mass communications comprise the institutions and techniques by which specialised groups employ technological devices (press, radio, films, etc) to disseminate symbolic content to large heterogenous and widely dispersed audiences.”  

The objectives of mass communication courses, offered by a number of institutes in India and abroad (see colleges section of this site), are to study the relationship between communication and society and to expose students about the latest trends in mass communication and development. The courses also make students aware of different modes, structures and forms of communication. There are a lot of books on mass communication available in the market (see books section of this site). To know more about print and broadcast journalism, see “what’s journalism” section of this site. After completing the course, students have to do an internship in any TV channel, TV production house, radio station or newspaper (register to internship section of this site for the detail information). The career options for mass communication students are many. They can work as journalists in any medium—print, web, broadcast—or can explore avenues in production houses or entertainment industry as script writers, anchors, directors and producers etc. www.mediahive.co.in has a special section for jobs, which will keep you updated on vacancies in the industry.

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LET’S UNDERSTAND BUSINESS JOURNALISM

Since the early 90s business news coverage in Indian newspaper, magazine, television and radio is getting prominent space/coverage. It has not been confined to the business page/section only. Even our national politics is now business-driven. Globalisation, trade talks, sensex, repo rate, inflation, growth rate, power generation, WiFi, broadband and merger & acquisition, etc, are what we read or hear everyday. So, the role of business journalism is now much wider. News from the world of business has now more readership/viewership compared to the license age era of the country.

A misconception about business journalism is that it is only about stock markets and banks. This is not true. News from stock markets and banks form just a part of a business page/bulletin. In fact, business journalism covers everything – corporates, railways, civil aviation, infrastructure, tourism, commerce, telecom, IT, real estate, automobiles, power and healthcare, etc – except hard core party politics, crime and sports. If you see the front page of any national daily, you’ll find most of the stories on the page are filed by business bureau.

However, as a student of journalism you have to know certain terms, even if you don’t have economics background, to understand the business news aptly. We have tried to explain the students those terms in a very simple language. They can also refresh the skill-set of those who are already in the profession.

ECONOMY

GDP: Gross Domestic Product or GDP of any country is a yardstick to measure the size of its economy. It is defined as the total market value of all final goods and services of a country in a given period of time (normally a year). It is also considered the sum of value added at every stage of production of all final goods and services produced within a country in a given period of time.

GDP = consumption + gross investment + government spending + (exports- imports), or,
GDP = C + I + G + (X-M).

India is one of fastest growing economies of the world. In the last four years, India grew at an average of 6.8% GDP growth. Although many people are still dependent upon agriculture, yet the service sector is playing a very important role in the Indian economy. It is now contributing more than half of the Indian GDP. Earlier mainly it was agriculture which contributed in the GDP.

Fiscal deficit: Fiscal deficit is when a government’s total expenditures exceed the revenue that it generates (excluding money from borrowings). Deficit differs from debt, which is an accumulation of yearly deficits. A fiscal deficit is regarded by some as positive economic event. For example, economist John Maynard Keynes believed that deficits help countries climb out of economic recession. On the other hand, fiscal conservatives feel that governments should avoid deficits in favour of a balanced budget policy.
 
Revenue deficit: Revenue deficit is when the net amount received falls short of the projected net amount to be received. It is opposite to the revenue surplus, which occurs when actual amount exceeds the projected amount.

Recession: An economy goes through recession when the country’s national income (GDP) reports negative growth in two consecutive quarters of a year. During recession GDP skids compared to previous period, unlike economic slowdown where the GDP grows at a very small pace. During recession the aggregate income of all individuals, companies and other entities is less than what it was during the previous period.

Inflation: Inflation is the rise in the price of a basket of goods and services that is representative of the economy as a whole. It calculation varies country to country.

Most of the countries use a consumer price index (CPI) while India uses a wholesale price index (WPI) to calculate inflation rate. WPI is used to measure the change in the average price level of goods traded in wholesale market. In our country, a total of 435 commodities data on price level is tracked through WPI. These goods have weights attached to them.  If a particular item has a higher weight and its price rises, it will have a greater effect on the inflation rate. The data for this is available weekly and it helps the government to calculate the inflation weekly.

The WPI consists of three broad categories of items --. Primary goods (weight of 22.0253), Fuel, Power, Light and Lubricants (weight of 14.2262) and Manufactured products (weight of 63.7485). The base year of the WPI is 1993-94.

MARKETS

Share: A share or stock is a document issued by a company which entitles its holder to be one of the owners of the company. A share is issued by a company or can be purchased from the stock market. Every transaction on the stock exchanges is carried out through licensed members called brokers. General investors should identify a sub-broker for regular trading in shares and place their order for purchase through the sub-broker. The sub-broker transmits the order to broker who will the execute it. There are two ways for investors to get shares – primary market and secondary market. In primary market, shares are bought by public issue (IPO) directly from the company. In the secondary market, shares are traded between two investors.

Share price:  Share price refers to the value at which a company’s shares are traded in the market. It determines what investors get for the shares. The market price of the shares change with each passing minutes

IPO: When an unlisted company makes either a fresh issue of securities or an offer for sale of its existing securities or both for the first time to public, then it is called initial public offering or IPO. This paves the way for listing and of the issuer’s securities.

Demat:  Demat refers to dematerialised account. Just as you have to open an account with a bank if you want save money or make cheque transactions, etc., nowadays you need to open a demat account if you want to buy or sell stocks.  Most banks are also DP participants, as are many brokers. A broker is separate from a DP. A broker is a member of stock exchange, who buys and sells share on his behalf and on behalf of his clients. A DP just gives you an account to hold those shares. You don’t have to take the same DP that your broker takes. You can choose your own.

BSE:  The Bombay Stock Exchange or BSE is the oldest stock exchange in Asia. It is also the biggest stock exchange in the world in terms of listed companies with 4,800 listed companies as of August 2007. Located at Dalal Street, Mumbai, it was established in 1875. BSE Sensex, also known as the BSE 30 index, is a value-weighted index composed of thirty scrips, with the base April 1979 = 100. The set of companies which make up the index has been changed only a few times in the last twenty years. These companies account for around one-fifth of the market capitalisation of the BSE.

Apart from BSE Sensex, which is the most popular stock index in India, BSE uses other stock indices as well:
BSE 500, BSE 100, BSE 200, BSE PSU, BSE MIDCAP, BSE SMLCAP BSE BANKEX, BSE Teck, BSE Auto, BSE Pharma, BSE Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG), BSE Consumer Durables, BSE Metal. Its website is www.bseindia.com
      
Sensex: The Sensex is an index, which gives a general idea about whether most of the stocks have gone up or most of the stocks have gone down. It is an indicator of all the major companies of the BSE.
Here is a timeline on the rise of the Sensex.

1000, July 25, 1990 - On July 25, 1990, the Sensex touched the four-digit figure for the first time and closed at 1,001 in the wake of a good monsoon and excellent corporate results

2000, January 15, 1992 - The Sensex crossed the 2,000-mark and closed at 2,020 followed by the liberal economic policy initiatives undertaken by the then finance minister and current Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh.

3000, February 29, 1992 - The Sensex crossed 3,000-mark in the wake of the market-friendly Budget announced by the then finance minister, Dr Manmohan Singh.

4000, March 30, 1992 - The Sensex crossed the 4,000-mark and closed at 4,091 on the expectations of a liberal export-import policy. It was then that the Harshad Mehta scam hit the markets and Sensex witnessed unabated selling.

5000, October 11, 1999 – It crossed the 5,000-mark as the BJP-led coalition won the majority in the 13th Lok Sabha election.

10,000, February 7, 2006 - The Sensex finally closed above the 10K-mark on February 7, 2006.

15,000, July 6, 2007- The Sensex on July 6, 2007 crossed another milestone and reached a magic figure of 15,000.

20,000, October 29, 2007- The Sensex crossed the 20k mark for the first time with a massive 734.5 point gain but closed below the 20k mark. It took 11 days to reach from 19k to 20k. The journey of the last 10,000 points was covered in just 869 sessions as against 7,297 sessions taken to touch the 10,000 mark from 1,000 levels.

NSE: Most of the stock trading in the country is done though BSE and NSE (National Stock Exchange). NSE is situated in Delhi.

Nifty: The Nifty is an indicator of all the major companies of the National Stock Exchange.  Just like the Sensex represents the top stocks of the BSE, the Nifty represents the top stocks of the NSE.

S&P CNX Nifty: Nifty is a well diversified 50-stock index accounting for 23 sectors of the economy. It is used for a variety of purposes such as benchmarking fund portfolios, index-based derivatives and index funds. S&P CNX Nifty is owned and managed by Indian Index Services and Products Ltd (IISL), which is a joint venture between Crisil and NSE. IISL is India’s first specialised company focused upon the index as a core product. IISL have a consulting and licensing agreement with Standard and Poor’s (S&P) who are the world leaders in index services.

Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA): It is often referred to as Dow. The DJIA is one of the most watched stock indexes in the world, containing firms like Coca-Cola, GE, Microsoft and Exxon. Dow Jones (the company) owns the Dow Jones Industrial Average as well as many other indexes that represent different sectors of the economy. In the world of business and finance, one often hears people asking, "How did New York do today?" It means they are referring to the DJIA.

NYSE: It is a stock exchange based in New York City, which is considered the largest equities-based exchange in the world based on total market capitalisation of its listed securities. Formerly run as a private organisation, the NYSE became a public entity in 2005 following the acquisition of electronic trading exchange Archipelago. The parent company of the New York Stock Exchange is now called NYSE Euronext, following a merger with the European exchange in 2007. Also known as the "Big Board", the NYSE relied for many years on floor trading only, using the open outcry system. Today, more than half of all NYSE trades are conducted electronically, although floor traders are still used to set pricing and deal in high volume institutional trading.

Dividend: Dividends are payments made by companies to their stockholders to share a portion of the profits from a particular quarter or year. The amount that any particular stockholder receives is dependent upon how many shares of stock owned and how much the total amount being divided up among the stockholders.

Book Closure: Before a company declares a dividend or issues bonus or rights shares, it closes its register of members for a certain period, from one week to a month, during which no transfer of shares is registered. Only those shareholders whose names appear on the register after the book closure are eligible to receive dividends and bonus shares and entitled to rights shares.

Bull & Bear Markets: When stock market rises it is called bull market. Bear market is exactly the opposite.

PE Ratio: It is valuation ratio of a company’s current share price compared to its per-share earnings. It is calculated as market value per share/earning per share. For example, if a company is currently trading at Rs 100 a share and earnings over the last 12 months were Rs 10 per share, the P/E ratio for the stock would be 10 (Rs 100/Rs 10). It is useful to compare the P/E ratios of one company to other companies in the same industry, to the market in general or against the company’s own historical P/E.

Market Capitalisation: Market capitalisation, often referred as market cap, is a measure of a company’s total value. It is estimated by determining the cost of buying an entire business in its current state. It is the total dollar value of all outstanding shares. It is calculated by multiplying the number of shares outstanding by the current market price of one share.

Red Herring: It is a preliminary registration statement that must be filled with the regulator describing a new issue of stock and the prospects of the issuing company. There is no price or issue size is stated in the red herring and it is updated several times before being called the final prospectus. It is known as a red herring because it contains a passage in red that states the company is not attempting to sell its share before the registration is approved by the regulator.

Participatory Notes: Participatory notes are financial instruments used by investors or hedge funds that are not registered with the Securities and Exchange Board of India to invest in Indian securities. Indian-based brokerages buy India-based securities and then issue participatory notes to foreign investors. Any dividends or capital gains collected from the underlying securities go back to the investors.

Book Profit, Book Value, NAV: Book profit means making profit by selling a share which has gone above its purchase price. Book value is the value at which an asset is carried on a balance sheet. Since the asset is subject to depreciation, the book value is lower every year. Cost minus accumulated depreciation will thus show the book value is an asset. Net asset value is used to measure net assets. It is calculated by subtracting liabilities from the value of a fund’s securities and other items of value and dividing this by the outstanding shares. NAV is used in mutual fund tables publish in newspapers, magazines to show price per share for the fund

Hedge Fund: It is a portfolio of investments that uses advanced investment strategies such as leverage, long, short and derivative positions in both domestic and international markets with the goal of generating high returns. Investments in hedge funds are illiquid as they often require investors to keep their money in the fund for a minimum period of at least one year.

Derivatives: The derivative is merely a contract between two or more parties. Its value is determined by fluctuations in the underlying asset. The most common underlying assets include stocks, bonds, commodities, currencies, interest rates and market indexes. Future contracts, forward contracts, options, swaps are the most common types of derivatives. Derivatives are generally used to hedge risk, but can also be used for speculative purposes. For example, a European investor purchasing shares of an American company of an American exchange (using US dollars) will be exposed to exchange rate risk while holding the stock. To hedge this risk, the investor can purchase currency futures to lock in a specified exchange rate for the future stock sale and currency conversion back into euros.

Short Selling: Selling of a security when it is not available with the investor is called short selling. The seller borrows the security from others in the market. It happens when the entity has a bearish view of the market or shares and they would sell the security even if they don’t have it with the intention to buy it back at a lower price.

Commodities Market: It is a market for trading bulk and basic goods like edible oil, cotton, grain, rubber, tea, coffee, etc.

FINANCE

Monetary & Credit Policy: Monetary and credit policy is RBI’s quarterly statements on a set of measures of both short-term and structural nature.

Repo Rate: A repo is short for repurchase agreement. It is the rate at which banks borrow funds from the RBI to meet the gap between the demand they are facing for money (loans) and how much they have on hand to lend. If the RBI wants to make it more expensive for the banks to borrow money, it increases the repo rate. Similarly, if it wants to make it cheaper for banks to borrow money, it reduces the repo rate.

Reverse Repo Rate: This is opposite of repo rate. The rate at which RBI borrows money from the banks (or banks lend money to the RBI) is termed the reverse repo rate. If the reverse repo rate is increased, it means the RBI will borrow money from the banks and offer them a lucrative rate of interest. As a result, banks prefer to keep their money with the RBI instead of lending it out. Consequently, banks will have lesser funds to lend to their customers. This helps stem the flow of excess money into the economy.

CRR: Cash reserve ratio (CRR), refers to a portion of deposits (cash) which banks have to keep/maintain with the RBI. This serves two purposes. It ensures that a portion of bank deposits is totally risk-free and secondly it enables that RBI control liquidity in the system, and thereby, inflation by tying their hands in lending money.

SLR: It stands for statutory liquidity ratio. Besides the CRR, banks are required to invest a portion of their deposits in government securities as a part of their statutory liquidity ratio (SLR) requirements. SLR also restricts the bank’s leverage in pumping more money into the economy.

Bank Rate: This is the rate at which RBI lends money to other banks (or financial institutions). The bank rate indicates the central bank’s long-term outlook on interest rates. If the bank rate increases, long-term interest rates also tend to move up, and vice-versa. Banks make a profit by borrowing at a lower rate and lending the same funds at a higher rate of interest. If the RBI hikes the bank rate, the interest that a bank pays for borrowing money (banks borrow money either from each other or from the RBI) increases. It, in turn, hikes its own lending rates to ensure it continues to make a profit.

Call Rate: Call rate is the interest rate paid by the banks for lending and borrowing for daily fund requirement. Since banks need funds on a daily basis, they lend to and borrow from other banks according to their daily or short-term requirements on a regular basis.

CORPORATE WORLD

AGM: Annual general meeting (AGM) is a meeting held once in a year where the directors of the company report to the shareholders on the year’s performance. If there is any vacancy in the board of directors, it is filled with the shareholders’ consent. The head of the company presents the future outlook of the company and answers queries of the shareholders at the meeting.

Balance Sheet: A balance sheet is a statement of the financial position of a company on a particular date, showing the nature and amount of a company’s assets and liabilities on a particular date, usually the end of the accounting year.

Capital: The money with which a company runs its business is its capital, which is obtained in two ways – by issuing shares and by borrowing.

Capital Loss: It is a loss incurred when investments are sold at a price lower than their purchase price.

Capital Market: Capital market is the source from which long-term capital is raised for setting up the sustained growth of companies. Stock exchanges are a part of the capital market, not only because they readily provide money for new or existing ventures, but also because they help investors to trade in their shares and maintain the liquidity of investments. The capital market is different from money market (banks and lending institutions) which provide short-term finance.

Merger & Demerger: The combining of two or more companies is called merger. It is done mostly by offering the stockholders of one company securities in the acquiring firm in exchange for the surrender of their stock. Demerger is when any company decides to sell off its subsidiaries or divisions.

Break-even: Break-even is the point at which cost or expenses and revenue of a company are equal. There is no net loss or gain.

Turnover: Turnover is the total sales made by a company in any specific period like annually, half-yearly or quarterly.

Venture Capital: Venture capital means financing for new business. In other words, money provided by investors to start-up firms and small business with perceived, long-term growth potential. This is very important source of funding for start-ups that do not have access to capital markets. Most of the venture capital comes from a group of wealthy investors, investment banks and other financial institutions that pool such investments or partnerships. This form of raising capital is popular among new companies or ventures with limited operating history, which cannot raise funds through a debt issue. However, venture capitalists look for a higher rate of return than would be given by more traditional investments.

Bridge Loan:  It is a short-term loan that is used until a person or company secures permanent financing or removes an existing loan. This type of financing allows the user to meet current obligations by providing immediate cash flow. The loans are short-term (up to one year) with relatively high interest rates and are backed by some form of collateral such as real estate or inventory.

Organic and Inorganic Growth: Organic growth is the rate of business expansion only through increasing output and sales while inorganic growth is increasing turnover through mergers and acquisitions.

Private Equity: Equity capital that is made available to companies or investors, but not quoted on a stock market. The funds raised through private equity can be used to develop
new products and technologies, to expand working capital, to make acquisitions, or to strengthen a company’s balance sheet.

Futures Contract: A contractual agreement, generally made on the trading floor of a futures exchange, to buy or sell a particular commodity or financial instrument at a pre-determined price in the future. Futures contracts detail the quality and quantity of the underlying asset. They are standardized to facilitate trading on a futures exchange. Some futures contracts may call for physical delivery of the asset, while others are settled in cash.

COMMERCE

Balance of Payment (BoP): It is a record of all transactions made between one particular country and all other countries during a specified period of time. BoP compares the dollar difference of the amount of exports and imports, including all financial exports and imports. A negative balance of payments means that more money is flowing out of the country than coming in, and vice versa. BoP may be used as an indicator of economic stability.

Balance of Trade (BoT): It is the difference between exports and imports. A country has a trade deficit if it imports more than it exports. The opposite scenario is trade surplus.

Exim Policy: Export Import Policy (Exim Policy) or Foreign Trade Policy is a set of guidelines and instructions related to the import and export of goods. The main objectives of this policy are to facilitate sustained growth in exports from India and import in India, and to stimulate sustained economic growth by providing access to essential raw materials, intermediates, components, consumables and capital goods required for augmenting production and providing services. Canalisation is an important feature of Exim Policy under which certain goods can be imported only by designated agencies. For example, an item like gold, in bulk, can be imported only by specified banks like SBI and some foreign banks or designated agencies.

QR:  Quantitative restriction (QR) is a quota on volume of imports.  In other words, it means the maximum amount of a particular commodity that can be imported into a country during a given time period.

PERSONAL FINANCE

Mutual Funds:  Mutual Funds provide a range of investment options. There are different assets in which the fund will invest and accordingly the investor can have exposure to various areas. MFs are safe bet for small investors. MFs have resources to do research on companies and industries and thus, chances for them to select right stock at the right time.

SIP: Systematic investment plan or SIP involves a system where a regular sum of money is invested each month in a particular instrument. It can be done while investing in mutual fund equity schemes because it average out the cost of investment.

PAN: Permanent Account Number or PAN is issued by income tax department of govt of India. The number is required for all kinds of investments

VAT: Value Added Tax, popularly known as VAT, is a special type of indirect tax in which a sum of money is levied at a particular stage in the sale of a product or service.

FBT: In 2004, the then finance minister P Chidambaram introduced fringe benefit tax (FBT) for employers that made perks taxable.

TECH WORLD

Broadband: Broadband is a ten times faster than a normal dial-up Internet connection. With broadband connection, the Internet is permanently connected for a fixed price (depending on suppliers).

GSM & CDMA: Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) and Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) are mobile phone networks. GSM and CDMA are different standards for mobile communications. Cellular carriers use either of the two networks. CDMA is faster in transferring data but using CDMA interferes with voice calls. GSM data is slower but it does not interfere with voice calls. GSM phones require SIM cards, usually one for each country in which you will use the phone. CDMA phones do not require SIM cards.

WiFi: Wi-fi is wireless networking. It has the ability to connect to a network or computer using radio signals (as opposed to network cabling). It is faster with a wider range than Bluetooth. Using a setup with one's laptop or PC means that one can share a broadband internet connection, swap files, or share a printer or storage area among computer users. Wi-fi comes in two speeds: 802.11b (data transfer rates up to 11 megabits per second) or the newer 801.11g standard that goes up to 54 megabits per second. This compares with Bluetooth's much slower speed of 0.57 megabits per second.

3G: The 3G (third generation) mobile services allow high data rate services, including high resolution video, TV channels and high speed internet in addition to conventional data services. The GSM and CDMA technology-based mobile phone services offer 144 Kbps speed while the minimum download speed in 3G services is 2Mbps. The 3G mobile telephony service was launched in India on December 11, 2008.

Here are many business dailies and magazines in India.  To get the complete list click on the Newspapers and Magazines sections

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WHAT’S RECESSION

Media Hive News Network

The National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) had officially declared that the US economy was in recession on December 1, 2008. According to NBER, the country entered a recession in December 2007.The bureau said that the US economic expansion lasted 73 months, from November 2001, before contracting.

We give you a guide to recession:

What is recession?

An economy goes through recession when the country’s national income (GDP) reports negative growth in two consecutive quarters of a year. During recession GDP skids compared to previous period, unlike economic slowdown where the GDP grows at a very small pace. During recession the aggregate income of all individuals, companies and other entities is less than what it was during the previous period.

What are the symptoms of recession?
Decline in retail business, meaning people buying less
Factory output decreases
Unemployment increases
Stock markets often remain downwards
Income of people takes a hit
 
How did NBER define recession on Dec 1, 2008?

The National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) of the United States officially announced recession on December 1, 2008. It used a broad range of economic indicators, such as employment and production, to make this judgement. It said that the “decline in economic activity in 2008 met the standard for a recession”. It defined a recession as a “significant decline in economic activity spread across the economy, lasting more than a few months, normally visible in production, employment, real income and other indicators.” However, NBER did not forecast the length of the recession. Other figures published on December 1 suggested that the slowdown is gathering pace in the country. The manufacturing output dipped at the fastest rate since 1982. The revised figures for GDP showed that it fell by 0.5% in the third quarter of 2008.

What were the recessionary periods in the US?

The last recession in the US occurred during 2000 and 2001 when the dotcom companies went bust. The worst recession in the US was from November 1973 to March 1975, where GDP fell by 4.9 per cent. The country also saw economic downturn between 1929 and 1933.

How the US recession will affect India?

Recession in the US is bound to hurt India as it will slow the rate of India’s overall growth. The flow of foreign direct investment (FDI) will be interrupted as companies redraw their plans. As the new orders from the US dry up, Indian exports industry faces severe crisis. The US accounts for almost 15% of total Indian exports. Same is the case with software and BPO industries. Gems and jewellery and pharma sectors are also among worst hit sectors due to the recession.

To know more about the US crisis, read How US Caught Cold

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BUDGET, RAIL BUDGET & ECONOMIC SURVEY

Media Hive News Network

The governments come and go but we the people who pay the taxes, we the people who suffer the most when the prices rise be it petroleum product, food, vegetable or traveling. The government policies have both the short-term and long-term effects on our finances—sometimes good, sometimes bad. Every year central government gives an account of economic health of our country through Economic Survey and announces schemes, programmes, sops and sticks through Budget and Rail budget. We’ve tried to keep you familiar with these three important events in a simple language.

Union Budget: The Union Budget for a given year gives details of expenditures planned by the government and expected revenues from the government's tax machinery to finance them. It uses the term “receipts” for incomes. Both receipts and expenditures are classified under two heads: revenue account and capital account. While revenue receipts and revenue expenditures are expected to occur in a given financial year, capital account receipts and expenditures can happen over a longer time interval.

Government's revenue incomes or receipts originate from two sources: taxes and returns on capital invested in public sector enterprises. The government's tax income includes the income-tax; service tax; the excise levied on products and the customs duties charged on imports. Additional income comes from taxes charged on company profits, besides taxes on capital gains made while selling off assets like shares and houses.

Capital receipts can come from within the country or from foreign governments and multilateral organisations like the International Monetary Fund (IMF). When one buys a National Savings Certificate or opens a PPF account in the post office, he boosts the government's capital receipts.

Government's revenue expenditure includes money spent on normal running of government departments and various services, interest charges on government debt, subsidies. Grants to state governments and other parties are also treated as revenue expenditure. Capital expenditure includes payments made for acquisition of efforts like land, buildings and machinery, as also investments in shares. Loans and advances extended by the Centre to state governments and Union Territories, PSU's and other parties also fall under this category.

The government expenditure is also classified into plan and non-plan expenditure. Plan expenditure is money spent on new projects such as new hydel power plants or highways, expected to commence in the financial year. Non-plan expenditures emanate from projects that have already been completed. For instance, maintenance and salaries of staff of health centre set up by the government would be classified under this category.
The Budget also has policy announcements. The Budget indicates the government's economic thinking and determines activities such as exports and foreign direct investment, which indirectly impact our finances.

Economic Survey: The Economic Survey of India is published by Central Statistical Organisation, which consists of general economic health of the country. It focuses on various micro and macro economic sectors with complete statistical data and analysis. Each year such survey is conducted to show the status of economic scenario of the country.

Railway Budget: The Indian railways has one of the largest networks of trains in the world and since the first rail from Bombay to Thane started in 1853, Indian railways has come a long way. Every year the ministry of railways presents the railway budget in Parliament. The rail budget is presented two days before the general Budget. It has to be passed by the Lok Sabha before it is accepted. The rail budget deals with the improvement in the existing trains and contains details of the new trains. It also says about the passenger fares and tarries to be levied.

Though the railway budget is presented separately, figures of income and expenditure is shown in the general Budget. The railway budget also tells about the income generated from the previous year and the expectations from the coming year. It talks about new stations, passenger amenities, tariffs on parcel and goods and many more. Recently the government is facing stiff competition from the low-cost airlines. So the budget aims to draw more and more passengers.

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PLANNING COMMISSION OF INDIA

India’s Planning Commission has helped in the better utilisation of the country's resources for the welfare of the citizens. It is considered by many as the backbone of the country's progress and all-round development.

It was set up in March 1950 to promote a rapid rise in the standard of living of the people by exploiting the resources of the country, increasing production and offering employment opportunities to all. The Planning Commission or Plan panel has the responsibility for formulating plans as to how the resources can be used in the most effective way. Jawaharlal Nehru was the first chairman of the Panning Commission.

Structure of the Planning Commission:

The Prime minister is the chairman of the Planning Commission. The deputy chairman, who is nominated, Cabinet ministers (who are part-time members) and the full-time members (experts taken from various field such as industry, science, general administration, and economics) give advice and guidance for the formulation of Five-Year Plan, annual plans, state plans, projects and schemes etc.

Current team:

Chairman - Dr. Manmohan Singh

Deputy chairman- Montek Singh Ahluwalia

Minister of state- V Narayanasamy

Members - B.K. Chaturvedi, Saumitra Chaudhuri, Syeda Hameed, Dr Narendra Jadhav, Prof Abhijit Sen, Dr Mihir Shah, Dr.K.Kasturirangan, Arun Maira

Previous team: (UPA 1)

Chairman - Dr. Manmohan Singh

Deputy chairman- Montek Singh Ahluwalia

Minister of state- MV Rajshekharan

Members -   Dr. Kirit Parikh, Prof. Abhijit Sen, Dr VL Chopra, Dr. Bhalchandra Mungekar,
                    Dr.(Ms.) Syeda Hameed, BN Yugandhar, Anwar-ul-Hoda, BK Chaturvedi

Secretary-   Dr. Subhas Pani

Functions of Planning Commission:

To make an assessment of the resources of the country and to see which resources are deficient

To formulate 5-year plans which make an effective use of the country's resources

To determine national priorities and allot resources to the plans

To decide the machinery required to make the plans successful

To make appraisals of the plans periodically in order to check their progress

Five-Year Plans

The Five-Year Plan in India is framed, executed and monitored by the Planning Commission of India. Currently, India is in its 11th Five-Year Plan.

1st Plan (1951-56)
The first five-year plan was presented by Jawaharlal Nehru in 1951. Its main objectives were agriculture, community development, communications and land rehabilitation.

2nd Plan (1956-61)
The second Five-Year Plan mainly focused on hydroelectric projects, steel mills, production of coal and railway tracks.

3rd Plan (1961-66)
Its main objectives were defense, price stabilisation, construction of dams, cement and fertilisers plants, education etc.

4th Plan (1969-74)
During this period Indira Gandhi was the prime minister and she nationalised of 19 major banks. The funds raised for industrialization was used in the Indo-Pak war of 1971. India also conducted nuclear tests in 1974.

5th Plan (1974-79)
The major objectives of that plan were employment, poverty alleviation and justice etc

6th Plan (1980-85)
The 6th Five-Year Plan focused on information technology, national highway system, tourism, economic liberalisation, price control and family planning etc.

7th Plan (1985-89)
The objectives of that plan were improving productivity by upgrading technology.

8th Plan (1992-97)
Modernisation of industries was the main target of the plan.

9th Plan (1997-2002)
The main objectives of the Ninth Five-Year Plan were agriculture and rural development, food and nutritional security, empowerment of women, accelerating growth rates, providing the basic requirements such as health, drinking water, sanitation etc.

10th Plan (2002-2007)
The tenth plan highlighted the need for reduction of poverty ratio, increase in literacy rates, reduction in infant mortality rate, economic growth, increase in forest and tree cover etc.

11th Plan (2007-12)
The major objectives of the 11th plan are income generation, poverty alleviation, education, health, infrastructure and environment etc.

he official website of Planning Commission of India is http://planningcommission.nic.in

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DOHA DEVELOPMENT ROUND

Mediahive News Network

What is the Doha Round?

It is a series of continuing trade negotiations among countries. Such negotiations on complex issues relating to international trade have traditionally been named after the place where a particular round begins. The present round of talks started in Doha, Qatar in 2001. Actually, they were to have begun in Seattle in 1999, and were to be called the Millennium Round, but due to some countries boycotting the Seattle meeting and large-scale street protests, the talks were postponed.

The negotiations are attended by representatives of the 153 members of the World Trade Organisation. After the first meeting at Doha, ministerial level meetings took place in Canczn, Mexico (2003), and Hong Kong (2005). Related negotiations took place in Geneva (2004, 2006); Paris (2005); Potsdam, Germany (2007) and Geneva (2008).

Main issues of discussion

After the formation of the WTO in 1995, the need arose for detailed agreements on how trade between countries should take place. The developed countries felt that more liberalisation was necessary in order to expand trade. Several developing countries were dissatisfied with the new set-up under WTO and they too wanted detailed negotiations. Issues relating to trade in agricultural commodities, services, medicines, etc needed to be sorted out, as there were conflicting interests. To thrash out all these details, a fresh round of negotiations was thought necessary. This was launched in Doha, in a ministerial meeting. Officially called Doha Development Round, it was agreed that while negotiating the nuts and bolts of international trade, the concerns of under developed countries would be taken into account. The Trade Negotiations Committee (TNC) oversees the talks. The WTO's director-general, currently Pascal Lamy, is its chairman.

Slow progress

As has become clear by the slow progress, despite crossing several deadlines, the issues have involved a lot of controversy between various countries. While everybody agrees that international trade should be encouraged, the talks have got bogged down because, on most issues, there are two blocs of countries with conflicting interests.

Usually, the developed countries like US, European Union and Japan are on one side while the developing countries are on the other. On some important issues, like subsidies to farmers, there are differences between US and EU too. A group of about 20 countries has emerged as representing the interests of developing nations.  This is led by China, India, Brazil and South Africa. The main issues of contention revolve around agriculture subsidies and non-agricultural market access. Many developing countries, especially those that export agricultural produce, want the developed countries to lower their subsidies given to their farmers, so that the developing country producers are able to compete.  The developed countries are offering to undertake some cuts, but they want, in return, that the developing countries should lower customs and other duties to allow non-agricultural goods to freely enter their markets. This is the central issue of difference — who should yield how much.

What was the informal meeting of trade ministers in New Delhi in September 2009?
The initiative was taken by India in an attempt to give the stalled Doha talks some momentum. Trade ministers were invited to the summit with hope that they will draw up a timetable and give the Geneva negotiators their orders to get down to work.

US role in the last held talks in Geneva
US representative announced that they were willing to put a cap on their farmer subsidies at $15 billion per year, compared to about $18.6 billion in 2006, and EU was also willing to curtail its subsidies, provided the developing countries lowered duties on imports of non-agricultural goods substantially.

Developing countries, led by India and China were willing to do so, but wanted safeguards for times when prices fell too low or there were surges in imports. The talks failed on what exactly should be the cut-off point for this special safeguard mechanism. Several other issues like trade in cotton were also left unaddressed.

The official website of WTO is http://wto.org

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G-20

Media Hive News Network

What’s G-20?

The G-20 is a forum that promotes discussion between industrial and emerging-market countries on key issues related to global economic stability. It was created as a response both to the financial crises of the late 1990s and to a growing recognition that key emerging-market countries were not adequately included in the core of global economic discussion and governance.

This group represents 90 per cent of the world's gross domestic product and two-thirds of its population. The group includes the world's richest economies and some developing countries where extreme poverty persists.

Its members are the finance ministers and central bank governors of 19 countries: India, US, UK, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Japan Indonesia, Italy Argentina, Australia, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea and Turkey. The European Union is also a member, represented by the rotating Council presidency and the European Central Bank. To ensure global economic fora and institutions work together, the managing director of the IMF and the president of the World Bank, plus the chairs of the International Monetary and Financial Committee and Development Committee of the IMF and World Bank, also participate in G-20 meetings on an ex-officio basis.

The G-20 has enormous potential to generate a coordinated response to some of the most pressing issues facing the world today - including the need to combat extreme poverty.

When was the G-20 set up?
The G-20 first meeting was held in Berlin in 1999.

What was the Emergency meeting of G-20 in Washington 2008?
Leaders of the Group of 20 countries, who gathered in Washington in November, 2008, for an emergency meeting, agreed on a far-reaching 16-week road map to restore confidence in a tottering financial system that has shaken the world. In a document called the Washington Declaration, G-20 leaders agreed to lay the foundation for reform to help ensure a similar crisis does not happen again. G-20 plan included steps to boost standards of credit rating agencies, address weaknesses in accounting and disclosure standards, ensure cooperation between national financial authorities, and to set up risk warning system for banks It also decided to introduce reforms in global institutions like IMF & World Bank to give greater voice to emerging market economies.

How does the G-20 differ from the G-7?

The G-7 was established in 1976 as an informal forum of seven major industrial economies: Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States of America. The G-7 conducts dialogue and seeks agreement on current economic issues on the basis of the comparable interests of those countries. The G-20 was established in 1999 and reflects the diverse interests of the systemically significant industrial and emerging-market economies. (see: About the G-20). It has a high degree of representativeness and legitimacy on account of its geographical composition (members are drawn from all continents) and its large share of global population (two-thirds) and world GNP (around 90 per cent). The G-20's broad representation of countries at different stages of development gives its consensus outcomes greater impact than those of the G-7.

Cities that have hosted the G20 Summits

  1. 1999: Berlin, Germany
  2. 2000: Montreal, Canada
  3. 2001: Ottawa, Canada
  4. 2002: Delhi, India
  5. 2003: Morelia, Mexico
  6. 2004: Berlin, Germany
  7. 2005: Beijing, China
  8. 2006: Melbourne, Australia
  9. 2007: Cape Town, South Africa
  10. 2008: São Paulo, Brazil
  11. 2008: Washington D.C., USA (Special Meeting on Nov 15, 2008)
  12. 2009: Madrid, Spain

Future hosts of G20 Summits

  1. 2010: Nairobi, Kenya
  2. 2011: New Zealand
  3. 2012: United Kingdom
  4. 2013: Bali, Indonesia
  5. 2014: Jeddah, Saudi Arabia

The official website of G-2O is: www.g20.org

STING OPERATION

What is a sting operation?

In US and elsewhere, the term is used to describe the action of a law enforcement agency in which officials plot a deceptive operation to trap a criminal. The agents act like a partner in crime or a possible victim and lure the offender into the trap. It's common for agents to deploy a 'bait car' to catch an auto thief or pose as clients to crack prostitution or drugs racket. Recently, the American police has executed many stings to lure child molesters in chat rooms. The 2004-07 reality TV series "To Catch a Predator" was a sting, using spy cameras to identify potential sexual predators.

When did undercover journalism start?

The form of journalism in which a reporter infiltrates a group to get stories is perhaps as old as the profession. Perhaps the most notable example from the early days of such journalism was the 1887 asylum expose done by Nellie Bly, an American journalist, working for Joseph Pulitzer's the New York World. Her reports depicted the poor condition of the patients. The reporting resulted in a probe and subsequent increase in the budget of the Department of Public Charities and Corrections by $850,000. In the early days, reports were based on a journalist's accounts.

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