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Cashless Is King as E-Money Stocks Surge From India Currency Ban

  • Government offer rebates, discounts to spur digital payments
  • Digital economy seen growing to $1 trillion in 3 to 4 years
A customer counts Indian rupee banknotes at a stall at a vegetable wholesale market in Mumbai, India, on Saturday, Nov. 19, 2016. India's top court refused to stay petitions filed against Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s surprise decision last week to ban high value bank notes to eliminate unaccounted money.
Photographer: Dhiraj Singh/Bloomberg

Prime Minister Narendra Modi may offer another gift to India’s electronic cash companies. An index of the stocks has gained 12 percent since November’s surprise currency ban, and may further rally after the government introduced tax rebates on digital transactions from Christmas Day.

The gain in the gauge of 23 companies that make the devices and offer cashless services compares with the S&P BSE Sensex’s 3 percent drop since Nov. 8, when Modi invalidated 86 percent of the nation’s currency in circulation. Modi rolled out a slew of measures including rewards, tax rebates and discounts for digital transactions on Dec. 25.