With Nifty 50 trading at 17.1 times forward, India among the most expensive in the world
The benchmarks may not reflect the damage but India’s stock markets are faring very poorly. Nearly 80% of stocks with a current market capitalisation of `1,000 crore are in the red, having lost value between January and June.
Despite this, India is among the most expensive markets in the world. The Nifty 50 now trades at 17.1 times forward compared with 13.8 times for the Jakarta Composite. Both the Brazilian Bovespa and the Shanghai Composite are trading at a price-earnings multiple of 0.3 times, data from Bloomberg shows.
However, investors in Indian equities are losing money since just a handful of stocks is propping up the markets.
The Nifty Mid Cap Index is now down nearly 15% since January with 78% of its components having given negative returns. Among the large-caps, Infosys, TCS, HDFC Bank, HDFC, Kotak Mahindra Bank (KMB) and Reliance Industries (RIL) are doing well and have accounted for two-thirds of the gross up-move of the Nifty. “The re-rating of a small quality corner of the market has to be finite and cannot hold up the index indefinitely,”strategists at Bank of Merrill Lynch observed.
With equity sales of $three billion in three months, Foreign Portfolio Investors (FPIs) are clearly not comfortable with India’s macroeconomic fundamentals. Higher crude oil prices could lead to higher inflation and interest rates stymieing growth.