Indian markets are likely to open marginally higher on Thursday as most of the Asian stocks edged up today, shaking off the risk aversion that gripped financial markets overnight. The early indicator of NSE Nifty 50, SGX Nifty Futures was trading little changed, up 0.19% at 9,874 points.
These stocks will remain in focus today after major announcements:
To bring down its around Rs 49,000 crore gross debt, private utility Tata Power is planning to sell its non-core assets even as it continues to explore viable options to resolve issues pertaining to the financially crippled 4,000-mw Coastal Gujarat Power at Mundra. “Our gross debt is Rs 48,816 crore. We are examining various debt reduction options including sale of non-core assets,” Tata Power chairman N Chandrasekaran told shareholders at the 98th AGM here. The gross debt to equity ratio currently stands at 3.3:1, he added.
PSU Bank merger approval: The government today decided to set up an Alternative Mechanism to fast track consolidation among public sector banks (PSBs) to create strong lenders. The move to create large banks aims at meeting the credit needs of the growing Indian economy and building capacity in the PSB space to raise resources without dependence on the state exchequer. The Cabinet has given in-principle approval for PSBs to amalgamate through an Alternative Mechanism (AM), said an official release. “The decision would facilitate consolidation among the Nationalised Banks to create strong and competitive banks,” it said. The decision comes a day after all the nine bank employees’ unions observed a day long nation-wide strike against the government’s efforts to consolidate PSBs.
With a clutch of 12 institutional investors in Infosys asking that co-founder and former CEO Nandan Nilekani be appointed on the company’s board, speculation is rife Nilekani might be the new chairman of the software firm. Nilekani was the CEO of the company from 2002 to 2007. Reuters reported investors had written to the company expressing concern over the recent development and saying Infosys should “consider inviting Nilekani to the board in a suitable capacity”. Amid the feud between chairman emeritus NR Narayana Murthy and the board chaired by R Seshasayee and co-chaired by Ravi Venkatesan, there is also talk that Kris Gopalakrishnan may be a contender for the chairman’s post.
Leading FMCG player Britannia Industries is aiming to increase its market share in the Rs 1,800-crore premium cream biscuits category from 35 per cent to 50 per cent in the next two years. “We are relaunching ‘Treat’, which is our flagship
brand in the premium cream biscuit. We have around 35 per cent share in premium creams and the idea is to build this share to 50 per cent in the next two years,” PTI reported citing Britannia Industries’ Vice-President (Marketing) Ali Harris Shere. The company will be investing Rs 50 crore on Treat in the next nine to 12 months, while the total investment for premium creams category would be Rs 100 crore over the next nine to 12 months.
Shares of the real estate major DLF rose over 7% on Wednesday after the company said it will hold a board meeting on 25 August to decide on promoters’ proposal to sell their 40% stake in its rental arm to investment firm GIC in a deal estimated at around Rs 13,000 crore. The stock of the blue-chip company gained as much as 7.87% to the day’s high of Rs 189.1 on NSE. Earlier in October 2015, DLF had announced that its promoters — K P Singh and family — would sell their entire stake in the DLF Cyber City Developers Ltd (DCCDL), which holds the bulk of commercial assets of the group. The promoters, who hold Compulsorily Convertible Preference Shares (CCPS) in DCCDL, had in March this year entered into an exclusivity pact with Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC to negotiate on this transaction.
Satyam case: The Securities Appellate Tribunal has given more time to Sebi for passing a fresh order in the Satyam case with respect to the quantum of punishment given to the erstwhile company’s founder B Ramalinga Raju and his brother B Rama Raju. The tribunal on May 12 had asked Sebi to pass a fresh order, preferably within four months. After taking up the matter with the consent of all parties, the SAT in a fresh order dated August 21 said, “Time to pass the order by Sebi is extended by 4 months from August 11, 2017.”
HDFC Ergo General Insurance, yesterday completed the merger of L&T General Insurance, is hopeful of closing the current fiscal year with a premium at around Rs 7,500 crore, or around 20 per cent growth. The third largest private non-life insurer, on a standalone basis, had closed fiscal 2017 with a total premium of Rs 6,289 crore. The company today completed the merger with L&T General Insurance, marking the first amalgamation in the country’s non-life insurance sector. The market share of the merged entity is 4.9 per cent. Before the merger, HDFC Ergo was the fourth largest in terms of market share.
RBI-NBFC: The central bank is considering an ‘ombudsman’ scheme for redressal of customer grievances at non-banking finance companies (NBFCs) in line with banks, RBI Deputy Governor N S Vishwanathan said today. He also said the Reserve Bank is not in favour of NBFCs accepting deposits from public with a view to protect the interest of depositors.
RBI–Investment: India Inc’s overseas direct investment fell over 47 per cent to USD 1.77 billion during July 2017, the RBI data showed yesterday. Indian companies had invested USD 3.35 billion in the same month of last year. Of the total investments in foreign ventures by Indian companies overseas, USD 900.66 million was in the form of issuance of guarantee, USD 513.81 million as loan and USD 353.55 million was part of equity investment.
Diversified global natural resources giant Vedanta Resources yesterday saw its operating profit swell by 48 per cent to USD 777.8 million for the first quarter to June on higher zinc output and uptick in prices. The company, which produces aluminium, copper, zinc, lead, silver, iron ore, oil and gas and commercial energy, had registered group Ebitda (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation) of USD 527.1 million in the corresponding quarter a year ago, it said in a statement.
State-run Hindustan Copper yesterday said operations at its Surda copper mine in Jharkhand have been restarted following the appointment of a new contractor. The mining operation at the copper mine was closed after India Resources Ltd (IRL) unilaterally terminated the operation and maintenance contract with effect from June 2, the company said in a filing to BSE.
Tata Sons yesterday announced appointment of GE South Asia President and CEO Banmali Agrawala as President of its infrastructure, defence and aerospace businesses. Agrawala will be taking up his new role effective October 1, 2017. He will report to Executive Chairman N Chandrasekaran in his new role, Tata Sons said in a statement.
Drug major Lupin yesterday said it has launched quetiapine fumarate extended-release tablets, used in the treatment of schizophrenia in the US market. The company has launched the product in various strengths in the US market after having received the approval from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) earlier, Lupin Ltd said in a statement.
The scrip of Fortis Healthcare yesterday zoomed nearly 8 per cent after ace investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala’s wife Rekha picked up 45 lakh shares of the company for an estimated Rs 60 crore through an open market transaction. Shares of the company advanced by 7.70 per cent to settle at Rs 152.55 on BSE. During the day, it zoomed 8.71 per cent to Rs 154.
Gati Limited yesterday said its consolidated net profit for the quarter ended June 30 was up by 258 per cent to Rs 18.3 crore against Rs 5.1 crore during the same quarter last fiscal. The company’s revenues from operations were almost flat at Rs 426.7 crore against Rs 425.5 crore in the first quarter of FY17, according to a statement issued by the city-based logistics provider.
Apex Frozen Foods IPO: Apex Frozen Foods Ltd’s Rs 152 crore IPO, which opened on 22 August, was subscribed 1.46 times at the end of the second day of bidding. The IPO consists of up to 87,00,000 equity shares of face value Rs 10 at a price band of Rs 171-175 per equity share, including a fresh issue of 72,50,000 shares and an offer for sale of 14,50,000 shares by promoters. The company will not receive any proceeds from the offer for sale of promoters’ 14,50,000 shares. The portion set aside for qualified institutional buyers (QIBs) couldn’t even see a single subscription till the end of the second day of bidding, while non-institutional investors category was subscribed 44.48%. Retail investors category was subscribed 2.9 times and shares reserved for employees was subscribed 20.04%.
Indian markets yesterday:
Indian equities regained momentum on Wednesday triggered by the buying in shares of heavyweight companies such as HDFC Bank, Infosys, ICICI Bank, Reliance Industriesand HDFC. Indian stock markets closed higher in line with a firming global trend amid buying push from domestic investors. BSE Sensex ended 276 points up at 31,568.01 points and NSE Nifty settled above the 9,800-mark.
The blue-chip shares of HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank, Infosys, Reliance Industries, HDFC and State Bank of India were the major contributors in driving the benchmark Sensex higher. Collectively these stocks added about 192 points in the index upsurge of 276 points. Out of 51 listed scrips on Nifty 36 advanced whereas 15 declined, however, all of the sectoral indices ended in green with gains up to 3.44% except Nifty FMCG index which closed 0.03% lower.
The Indian rupee on Wednesday:
The rupee yesterday slipped by 2 paise to close at 64.12 against the US currency due to renewed dollar demand from banks and corporates. The interbank foreign exchange market saw a listless trade as traders preferred to stay on the sidelines ahead of central banks annual meet at Jackson Hole, dealers said. Investors are hoping to get hints on future policy path of the US Federal Reserve as chair Janet Yellen and European Central Bank President Mario Draghi will address the meet on Friday.
US markets on Wednesday:
U.S. stocks closed lower on Wednesday as investors grappled with a threat from President Donald Trump to shut down the government if Congress fails to fund a Mexico border wall. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 87.8 points, or 0.4 percent, to 21,812.09, the S&P 500 lost 8.44 points, or 0.34 percent, to 2,444.07 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 19.07 points, or 0.3 percent, to 6,278.41.