Insurance, banks and more: Money briefs

National Insurance Company may soon hike mediclaim premium rates

Kolkata: State-run National Insurance Company (NIC) may soon increase the cost of health insurance premium to offset losses, company sources said. The hike could be between 20 and 40 per cent for NIC health products, sources in the city-headquartered firm added. Meanwhile, speaking on the sidelines of an interactive session of Indian Chamber of Commerce here NIC Chairman and Managing Director NSR Chandraprasad said, "We expect to get the IRDA approval on health insurance tariff in a month's time."

HDFC Bank says not much pressure on asset quality

MUMBAI: HDFC Bank is not seeing much pressure on asset quality, although there may be an uptick in bad loans for some products, Executive Director Paresh Sukthankar said on Friday. The bank is also seeing "renewed, intensified competition" from several banks on retail loan products, he added. Earlier, HDFC Bank, India's No.3 lender, met forecasts with a 30 percent rise in quarterly profit on Friday, led by higher loan growth, better fee income and stable asset quality.

Gold prices at 1-month low; importers active

MUMBAI: Gold prices fell further on Friday to stay near their lowest level in a month, weighed by a stronger rupee amid flat overseas markets, prompting importers to stock up the yellow metal for the wedding season. Silver also declined. The wedding season started this week and will continue until May. Festivals also take place during this period. The most-active gold for February delivery on the Multi Commodity Exchange (MCX) hit a low of Rs 30,610 per 10 grams, a level last seen on December 20. The contract was trading 0.36 per cent lower at Rs 30,646 at 0817 GMT.

Government to sell Rs 100 bn of T-bills on January 23

New delhi: The government will sell Rs 100 billion ($1.9 billion) of treasury bills, including Rs 50 billion of the 91-day T-bills and Rs 50 billion of 364-day T-bills, on January 23, the Reserve Bank of India said on Friday.

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