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Financial Conference 2017

7th Annual Great Lakes-Union Bank of India Conference

Chennai, February 10, 2017: Former ED of RBI and a whole time member of SEBI -Mr. G Mahalingam addressed the students of Great Lakes Institute of Management in its 7th Annual Great Lakes – Union Bank Finance. Based on the theme "Making equities work for the commoner", the conference had eminent speakers from the industry like Mr. Kalpen Parekh, Join President, DSP Black Rock MF and Mr. Nitesh Ranjan, Chief Investor Relations Officer, Union Bank of India.

Setting the tone for the conference, Great Lakes Founder, Dean and Chairman Dr.Bala V Balachandran said that the finance conference this year is aimed at bringing together some of the best minds from policy making, mutual funds and industry to analyze, debate and discuss the effective policy making process to aid wealth maximization of a larger section of the society.

Outlining the effects of global financial crisis after 2009, Mr. G Mahalingam spoke about the various dilemmas faced by the emerging market economies. "Managing growth and inflation has been the biggest challenge to the central banks of all the emerging markets; not to forget the over-valuation and under-valuation of currency adding to the task", he said. Mr. Mahalingam also remarked that the question why common people choose Bank fixed deposits over bonds which have excellent liquidity has still no definite answer. He also suggested that experts should focus on creating more awareness in this area.

Advising the students on the importance of starting to save early, Mr. Kalpen Parekh told, “The narrative today is to show the consumers high returns and lure them into unwanted investment plans. This is partly consumers’ fault too as people are unwilling to take calculated risks.”Mr. Parekh also added that apart from the price inflation; managing the lifestyle or the aspiration inflation, as one may call it, has become a major factor in investment related decisions. “Small capital and a long tenure never hurts”, he concluded.

Appreciating the efforts of Great Lakes in putting together yet another successful annual finance conference, Mr. Nitesh Ranjan shared his thoughts on making equities work for the commoner. “While there is financial inclusion when it comes to traditional options like bank accounts, the case is not the same when it comes to equities. Even today, a local Bank, real estate agent or a gold jewelry shop are more accessible than an equities expert. The sheer number of choices alone when it comes to equities can startle a commoner and this is where experts should focus on creating awareness,” he said.

The conference also witnessed a panel discussions on the topic 'Mutual Funds – opportunities and cautions' participated by eminent members of the industry like Mr. Srikanth Meenakshi (Founder & Director, Wealth India Financial Servies), Mr. Lakshmi narayanan Duraisamy (Chief Executive Officer, Sundaram AMC), Ms. Aarati Krishnan (The Hindu Business Lines & Value Research Pvt. Ltd.) and Ms. Mitu Samar (Founder, Eminence Panel Moderator).

The Annual Conference concluded with a CRISIL workshop on 'Wealth creation and financial planning'which was led by Mr. Jiju Vidyadharan (Director, Funds and Fixed Income CRISIL) and Mr. Piyush Gupta (Associate Director, Funds and Fixed Income, CRISIL)

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FINANCIAL CONFERENCE 2016

6th Annual Great Lakes-Union Bank of India Conference

February 5, Chennai: Delivering an inaugural address today at the 6th Annual Great Lakes-Union Bank Conference on the theme ‘Financial Stability, Credit Distress, and Economic Growth: The Way Forward’, held at the Great Lakes Institute of Management, Chennai, Mr. R. Gandhi shared his views on financial instability, system regulation, challenges and the way forward. Talking about the global financial crisis, the deputy RBI Governor said, “the global financial crisis had brought in paradigm shifts in many areas viz., regulation, governance and mind-set, amongst others, all in pursuance of a sustainable financial system and a system that should be sub-serving the real sector rather than self-serving.” I am not sure whether we are done with the post crisis learning curve or are still somewhere on it, he added.

Expressing his opinion on system regulation, Mr. Gandhi said that the regulators cannot afford to miss the woods for the trees. Effective regulation thus aims at understanding and guarding against the big risks, going beyond mere compliance with increasingly detailed and complex rules. The challenge to all of us is how do we establish an implementable framework to deal with the emerging systemic risks at their incipient stages, he concluded.

Dr. Bala V Balachandran, Founder & Dean of the Institute had earlier set the tone of the conference by cautioning the investors against irrational exuberance seen in the financial markets priors to the 2008 crisis.

Speaking at the conference, Mr. Arun Tiwari, Chairman and MD of Union Bank of India stressed the need to expand the reach of financial markets in the India and said, ‘If one takes two indicators for level of financial deepening in India, viz. credit-to- GDP ratio and stock market capitalisation to GDP ratio, India has still a long way to go with the ratios at 55% and 76% respectively”. Mr. Tiwari also noted that there is however a serious constraint in terms of banks staying capitalized enough to meet the 8-9% growth imperatives for economy. The 2008 crisis has reminded us of importance of prudence over ideological adventurism of free markets, he concluded.

The conference also witnessed a presentation on corporate credit distress by Professor. N. Prabhala, Chief mentor and Head of Research, CAFRAL and Professor of Finance at University of Maryland.

The inaugural session was followed by a Panel Discussion on “How to Repair the credit market, the equity market, the Rupee.” The panel had industry experts from various fields - Dr. N. Kamakodi, Managing Director and CEO, City Union Bank, Mr. Pawan Agarwal, Chief Ratings Officer – CRISIL, Dr. Rupa Rege Nitsure, Group Chief Economist - L&T Financial Holdings Ltd andProf R. L Shankar, Professor of Finance - Great Lakes Institute of Management. The panellists discussed about issues and factors affecting the financial stability and suggested way forward methods to achieve potential economic growth.

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Financial Conference 2015

Great Lakes Institute of Management hosted its annual Finance Conference at its Chennai Campus on January 27, 2015. The 5th annual conference was presented in association with the Union Bank of India. The key note speaker was Dr. Shubhashis Gangopadhyay, Research Director, India Development Foundation and Dean of School of Humanities, Shiv Nadar University and the Special Address was delivered by Mr. Vijay Prakash Usharia, Regional Head (Chennai) Union Bank Of India.

Welcoming the chief guests and the gathering, Dr. Bala V. Balachandran, Founder and Dean, Great Lakes Institute of Management said, “While you would have heard about Emerging trends in Economics in Finance, we wanted to acquaint you with the other side of it and keep you prepared. Hence the conference is themed Emerging issues in Economics and Finance which is a necessity for all the mangers to know.”

Key note speaker Dr. Shubhashis Gangopadhyay spoke about the challenging times all the developing countries and the developed ones are facing due to volatile situations in the market and the various factors responsible for it. Adding to this, Mr. Vijay Prakash Usharia told, “Today, technology throws a major challenge to all the industries than any other.” Keeping up with it and handling an issue is a major challenge and finance managers should be equipped to do so, he added.

The conference had received more than 50 research papers from research scholars across India, out of which 16 papers were shortlisted to be presented at the conference. The conference acted as a research forum for academic scholars, Economists, financial analyst and financial consultants to present their research work on emerging issues and future concerns in Banking and Finance areas. It also had research paper presentation from cross- disciplinary fields that are related to banking and/or finance. Majorly, the research papers were presented on Economics & Economics Policy and Finance & Investment.

The daylong conference concluded with prize distribution for best papers by the chief guests and Dr. S.K. Shanthi, Chair Professor– Union Bank Center for Banking Excellence, Great Lakes.

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Financial Conference 2012

This year, the Union Banking Center for Banking Excellence at Great Lakes organized the 3rd Annual Financial Conference. The theme for the 3rd edition was “Is India hedged against Systemic Risk?”
The recent global financial crises have shown that, the traditional approach of managing the soundness of the banks and other financial institutions needs to be supplemented by a system-wide macro-prudential approach. There is a need for assessing and containing this system wide risk. The global financial crises have also renewed policymakers' interest in improving the policy framework for financial stability. As such, the main objective of this conference was to bring insights on the various issues around financial inclusion from some of the best in the Industry.

Distinguished speakers at the conference:

Dr. K.C. Chakrabarty, Dy. Governor, Reserve Bank of India

Shri. Suresh Kumar Jain, Executive Director, Union Bank of India

The esteemed panelist comprised of:

Dr. Gurbachan Singh, Prof. ISI Delhi

Dr. Manoranjan Sharma, Chief Economist and DGM, Canara Bank

Dr. Rupa Nege Nitsure, Chief Economist and GM, Bank of Baroda

Mr. Brij Raj, Deputy General Manager, Reserve Bank of India

Dr. K.C Chakrabarty in his invigorating keynote address said that any kind of systemic risk was bad and that that the question of hedging does not arise since it would have happened already. Having said that, he also confessed that this is easier said then done and systemic risks can’t be avoided completely. The key, according to Dr. Chakrabarty, was managing it effectively by handling the three challenges faced by our country – high inflation, current account deficit and fiscal deficit.

Further, he spoke about the need for an inclusive economy and said that the banks should reach out to the poor and extend their credit facility to those who needed it. Dr. Chakrabarty was quite optimistic about the future and ended his address on a high note by saying that, India’s young population, lower per capita income, saving economy, less complicated financial system and lower credit penetration will keep it in a good stead in the future.

Next was the special address by Shri. S.K. Jain in which he showed confidence in India by saying that India is on a solid footing to manage the risks ahead and noted that the Indian banking industry is among the very few who are maintaining a resilience during the ongoing world crisis. He also thanked the RBI’s robust macro economic policies, due to which our banking system is well placed to take the adversities head on. He felt that the banks can no longer ignore any section of the society and establishing relationships with the customers was of paramount importance. Mr. Jain also said that the banking models have to be rejigged and focus shifted to reaching out to large unbanked people. He finished by saying that India is far away from systemic risk but the youth have to work hard to raise India from its current mediocrity to excellence.

After the keynote and special address, it was time for the panel discussion. First to speak on the topic was Dr. Gurbachan Singh who said that India was neither in a bubble, nor undervalued and was nowhere close to the 1992, 2000 or 2007 situations now but also felt that; saying Europe has a problem and we don’t is an exaggeration. They are confronting their problems while we are closing our eyes shut on it and are refusing to accept the reality. Dr. Singh ended his address by saying that it’s high time India started tackling its problems and once it does that, there’s nothing to worry about.

Next in line was Dr. Manoranjan Sharma who was crisply declared that systemic crisis in India wasn’t a reality and presented data to back up his claim. He also said that the India’s growth story is here to stay but more focus was needed on Health, Education and Employment. Systemic risk in India, he said, was mainly due to CAD and fiscal deficit and the Euro zone crisis and the task on hand was to reduce the effects of these in order to escape scathe free from this global turmoil.

Dr. Rupa Nitsure began by sharing the sources of systemic risk and cited latest facts to show how both global and International conditions for systemic risks had worsened since June 2012. She said that the growth rate is lower than the growth rates during 2008-09 crises largely due to the feeble investment sentiments resulting in no fresh capacities being made. Dr. Rupa blamed the indecisive coalition tactics, inefficient government at helm and increasing corruption for increasing the stress on infrastructure, steel and other sectors and finished by saying that although RBI has managed the stability excellently till now, India is definitely on a slippery slope and has to be careful in the future.

Mr. Brij Raj felt that our country is fairly hedged against systemic risk due to a well-diversified export basket. According to him, the problem in India is different than that of US and Europe and is more structural than regulatory. Further he said that even though the economy is in no imminent risk and there is no major concern for a failure, India should still be cautious and needed to be alert to the US and Euro zone crisis.

Thus ended the panel discussion with a much deserved standing ovation from the audience and was followed by a Q&A session, which maintained the sentiment that India was fairly hedged against systemic risk though, hard and focused work was needed for the country’s future development.

Financial Conference 2012

Financial Conference 2012 Photos

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Financial Conference 2010