State Bank of India has changed some of its lending rules for telecom firms in the aftermath of the second generation spectrum scandal. From now on, telecom companies that want to borrow from SBI will need to submit a utilization plan. They’ll also need to produce a repayment schedule and give details about how and when they’ll offer services. The new rules could make it harder for newer telecom firms to borrow. But banks, including SBI, have long been concerned about companies using borrowed money for other purposes.
In other news, the government has extended the ban on exports of onions indefinitely. It had earlier banned overseas sales until 15 January. Meanwhile authorities have also removed all duties on the import of onions. Prices of onions had more than doubled over the last week, becoming a major political issue.
And here’s how Indian markets closed after a day of choppy trade. The Sensex ended 45 points lower at 20,016. And the Nifty lost 16 points to wind up at 5,984.