Advance tax mop-up jumps 10%; TCS outgo more than doubles

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Mumbai, Dec 15: Notwithstanding economic slowdown, the overall advance tax payout by top 100 companies jumped over 10 per cent in the third quarter of the current fiscal and software major TCS reported the maximum hike.

TCS, the country's largest software exporter, paid up Rs 530 crore in the third quarter against Rs 230 crore in the same period last year. Tata Motors saw the maximum dip (Rs 80 crore Vs Rs 220 crore), according to the Income Tax Department.

"Overall, the tax payout by the top 100 corporates jumped over 10 per cent this quarter over the year-ago period. This is excluding the oil companies which paid no taxes this time around," a senior income tax official told PTI this evening here, requesting anonymity.

Major tax payers like the largest private sector company Reliance Industries, SBI, Tata Motors, and Mahindra & Mahindra among others, made lower payments this time around.

RIL paid only Rs 1,000 crore for the period against Rs 1,190 crore in the comparable quarter, while SBI paid 1,730 crore, down from Rs 1,860 crore. M&M's payout fell marginally to Rs 220 crore from Rs 230 crore.

Piramal Healthcare paid no tax this time around against a whopping Rs 1,200 crore last year. So was Reliance Communications, while its sister concern RInfra paid Rs 60 crore against nil in the comparable period.

These numbers come amidst the gloom spreading in the economy: the factory output number for October came as a rude shock. At a contraction of 5.1 per cent, this has been the steepest fall in industrial production since June 2009. Exports too have been falling since the peak in July.

Engineering and construction major L&T too saw its tax liability going down at Rs 350 crore in the period under review from Rs 370 crore in the year-ago period. The largest private sector lender ICICI Bank reported a flat growth in tax liability at Rs 450 crore.

Those paid more includes LIC, which paid out Rs 1,170 crore against Rs 1,060 crore, and Bajaj Auto that paid Rs 450 crore in the third quarter against Rs 370 crore.
Tata Steel paid Rs 1,100 crore against Rs 1,000 crore.

Advance tax payment is seen as a reflection of the health of the company in particular and the economy in general and a lower payout indicates their lower profitability. Companies pay advance taxes in four installments. In the current quarter they are bound to pay up 30 per cent of their annual tax liability.

Cement major ACC too paid more than double last time at Rs 95 crore against Rs 40 crore, while Ambuja's nearly doubled to Rs 115 crore against Rs 60 crore, despite a massive slump in cement demand.

While state-run banks led by SBI paid much lesser amount of the levy, on the back of the rising bad loans and shrinking margins, both the private sector lenders as well as foreign lenders bucked the trend with some of the even doubling their tax payouts.

While HDFC Bank paid Rs 900 crore Vs 750 crore, HDFC shelled out comparatively low at Rs 475 crore against Rs 400 crore, Axis Bank paid Rs 662 crore against Rs 540 crore, Kotak Bank nearly doubled to Rs 150 crore against Rs 80 crore, Yes Bank rose to Rs 160 crore against Rs 120 crore, IndusInd Bank Rs 120 crore Vs Rs 110 crore.

But Central Bank of India's payout came down to Rs 100 crore in the quarter from Rs 180 crore in year-ago quarter so was Bank of India’s which declined to Rs 100 crore from Rs 150 crore. UBI’s plunged to Rs 220 crore against Rs 350 crore.

State-run Bank of Baroda saw its tax out go jumping to Rs 525 crore against Rs 435 crore, Sidbi (Rs 160 crore Vs Rs 120 crore) BoI (Rs 100 crore Vs Rs 150 crore), Dena Bank (Rs 65 crore Vs Rs 80 crore and LIC HF at Rs 90 crore Vs Rs 80 crore.

Among foreign banks, HSBC saw its tax payout more than doubling to Rs 420 crore against Rs 200 crore, Citi’s just doubled to Rs 400 crore from Rs 200 crore and StanChart paid Rs 470 crore against Rs 375 crore.

The German lender Deutsche Bank, however, bucked the trend and paid only Rs 150 crore against Rs 170 crore. So was JM Morgan Stanley (Rs 20 crore vs Rs 35 crore), DSP Meryllynch (Rs 15 crore Vs Rs 25 crore).

PTI

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