Interim Budget, new tranche of SGB on partial withdrawal of NPS: Changes in personal finance to start from February 2024

Interim Budget, new tranche of SGB on partial withdrawal of NPS: Changes in personal finance to start from February 2024

The Interim Budget 2024, which will be presented on February 1, 2024, is expected to be one of the biggest events in terms of fiscal policies, fiscal reform and personal taxation. Apart from the Budget statement, some significant changes, such as the latest tranche of Sovereign Gold Bond (SGB), partial withdrawal of NPS, new update of IMPS, FASTag eKYC, loan campaign offer in SBI house, etc., will be implemented in February 2024.

1. Interim Budget 2024

The Interim Budget, the last statement for the Narendra Modi-led government this term, is expected to announce some measures for various sectors with a focus on growth. Many experts say they expect the government to increase capital spending.

Although this year’s budget is expected to be a non-event with no major policy changes on the line, experts feel the Center may announce some sops for the middle class to help to increase their spending capacity.

2. Sovereign Gold Bond (SGB) 2023-24 Series 4

The Reserve Bank of India will issue the final tranche of Sovereign Gold Bonds (SGBs) of the 2023-24 series in February 2024. The SGB 2023-24 Series IV will open on February 12, 2024, and close on February 16, 2024. The last series opened on December 18 and closed on December 22. The central bank fixed the issue price at Rs 6,199 per gram of gold.

“The nominal value of the bond is based on the simple average of the closing price (published by the IBJA) for gold of 999 purity in the last three working days of the week before the subscription period, i.e. December 13, December 14 , and December 15, 2023, works out to be Rs 6,199 per gram of gold,” the RBI said in a notification on December 15.

3. New NPS partial withdrawal rules

Partial withdrawal of NPS: The Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) issued a master circular in January laying down guidelines for partial withdrawal of funds invested under the National Pension System (NPS). The provisions will take effect on February 1, 2024.

The latest regulations emphasize that partial withdrawals are only allowed for specific purposes. The pension body clarified that subscribers can make partial withdrawals for the purchase or construction of the first house only.

“This Master Circular shall take effect from 01 February 2024 but shall be without prejudice to their (previously issued circulars) operation and effect, for the period when they are in force until they are reduced to under the Master Circular,” the PFRDA circular said.

4. FASTag eKYC

The National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) has announced that all FASTags with incomplete Know Your Customer (KYC) will be deactivated or blacklisted by the issuing banks after January 31. So, in February 1, users must ensure that the KYC of their latest FASTag is complete. The ‘One Vehicle, One FASTag’ campaign was started to prevent people from using one FASTag for multiple vehicles or multiple FASTags for one vehicle. Around 7 crore FASTags have been issued, but only 4 crore appear to be active. Additionally, there are 1.2 crore duplicate FASTags.

“Only the latest FASTag account will remain active as previous tags will be deactivated/blacklisted after January 31, 2024,” NHAI said in a statement.

5. Dhan Lakshmi FD schemes

Punjab and Sind Bank (PSB) last date of its special fixed deposit (FD) called ‘DHAN LAKSMI 444 days’ is January 31, 2024. Investors looking to invest in special fixed deposit of Punjab and Sind Bank should note that the scheme will not be available from February 1, 2024.

The tenure of this FD is 444 days and the interest rate of PSB Dhan Laksmi is 7.4% for ordinary citizens, for senior citizens the interest rate is 7.9% and for super senior citizens the interest rate is 8.05%.

6. SBI home loan concession

India’s largest lender State Bank of India is now offering home loan concessions for its customers. It offers up to 65 bps lower than the actual card rate. The last date for processing fees and concession on home loans is January 31, 2024. The concession is available for flexipay, NRI, non-salaried, privilege, and Apon Ghar customers. Interest rates on home loans vary depending on the CIBIL score.

The bank will levy 0.35% of the loan amount plus applicable GST, minimum Rs 2,000/- plus applicable GST and maximum Rs 10,000/- plus applicable GST.

Also read: ‘Narrative constructed’: Nirmala Sitharaman challenges growth naysayers

Also Read: Budget 2024 expectations: CII wants more time to file revised tax returns, clarification on capital gains tax under direct tax

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