Indian benchmark indices opened slightly higher on Thursday following the Asian shares which wobbled as investors braced for any surprises from the UK elections, the European Central Bank’s policy meeting and congressional testimony from ex-FBI director James Comey who was fired by President Donald Trump last month. BSE Sensex open up 0.15% at 31,316.91 points while NSE Nifty inches closer to 9,700, up 0.19% at 9,682.4 points.
The British pound held firm at $1.2957, near its highest levels in two weeks, supported in part by polls showing Prime Minister Theresa May is on course to increase her majority in parliament. Ahead of the UK vote results, the European Central Bank will hold its policy meeting in the Estonian capital of Tallinn, with the policy announcement due at 1145 GMT, followed by President Mario Draghi’s news conference at 1230 GMT.
The dollar stayed near its seven-month low against a basket of currencies as doubts over Trump’s ability to push through his stimulus plans have eroded the greenback’s gains made late last year.
03:30 pm: Indian benchmark indices closed marginally lower tracking the global cues. The 30-share barometer closed down 0.19% at 31,213.36 points while the broader Nifty 50 ended 0.17% lower at 9,647.25 points.
03:15 pm: Stressed assets of Indian banks will increase through 2019 and capitalisation will remain a key credit weakness for state-owned lenders which will need up to Rs 95,000 crore additional capital over the next two years, Moody’s said today. Public sector banks (PSBs) have limited ability to raise external capital and hence infusion by the government remains the only viable source for shoring up a capital base, Moody’s Investors Service said in a report — ‘Indian banks’ capitalisation profiles worsen; asset quality outlook remains weak’.
03:00 pm: RBI Governor Urjit Patel’s revelation in the post-policy review press conference that the members of the MPC unanimously declined to meet the Finance Ministry panel for discussions on the monetary policy before the monetary policy review, has brought the rift between the central bank and North Block out in the open. A senior official of the Finance Ministry told The Indian Express: “Since one month, we have had discussions with the Finance Ministry on sending the government’s views to the RBI.
02:45 pm: Chief Economic Adviser Arvind Subramanian today expressed concern over growing protectionism in global markets and felt that India needs open markets to grow at 8-10%. Citing the example, he said, India witnessed the fastest growth during a period when exports were highest. “I think, we in India have now a much bigger role in ensuring that world markets remain open…At the very least, any reversal of globalisation is something that we should be very very anxious about because if we want 8-10% growth, I think we need open markets,” he said.
02:30 pm: The Reserve Bank is expected to leave key interest rates unchanged in the current financial year despite low inflationary pressures and might go for a cumulative 50 bps rate hike next April, says a Nomura report. According to the Japanese financial services major, headline CPI inflation is expected to remain low in the near-term on low food prices. Moreover, core inflation is also expected to stay low on still lingering disinflationary effects of demonetisation and the negative output gap.
02:15 pm: Indian markets remain dull over the increased caution on the British presidential elections and European Central Bank minutes. BSE Sensex down 5.44 points at 31,265.84 points while NSE Nifty trades flat, up 1.5 points at 9,665.4 points. The shares of blue-chip companies Dr Reddy’s (up 4.01%), Sun Pharma (up 3.63%), Tata Steel (up 2.72%), Tata Motors DVR (up 2.69%), HDFC (up 1.85%) lead the gains on NSE Nifty 50.
02:00 pm: Equity mutual funds saw an inflow of Rs 10,790 crore in May, making it the highest in nearly two years, underpinned by investor optimism and steps taken by fund houses to create awareness about MFs. This also marks the 14th straight month of inflows into equity schemes. Prior to that, such funds had witnessed a pullout of Rs 1,370 crore in March 2016. The strong inflows have pushed the asset base of equity mutual funds (MFs) by 2.6 per cent in May from the preceding month.
01:45 pm: HDFC Bank’s market capitalisation, currently at over USD 65 billion ($ 6500 crore), may rise to around USD 137 billion ($ 13,700 crore) by the year 2019-2020 under a bull run case scenario, said Goldman Sachs according to a Reuters report. The global investment bank points out the key driver in this growth will be the doubling of bank’s profit to $5 billion ($ 500 crore) by the year 2020-2021, as the country’s largest private sector lender leverages market share shift from state-owned banks and retail under-penetration using its large distribution network and low cost of funds. Shares of HDFC Bank hit a record high of Rs 1,659.40 today and have gained about 36% this calendar year.
01:30 pm: While the Indian markets are continuously rising to make new all-time highs almost day-after-day, some investors have begun questioning valuations and sustainability of the rally. Morgan Stanley is not among those. The research and brokerage firm’s India Managing Director Ridham Desai sees the benchmark NSE Nifty more than tripling to hit 30,000 points in five years from now, effectively growing at a CAGR of over 25%.
01:15 pm: Asian currencies edged lower on investor caution ahead of major occurrences such as the British general election result, the European Central Bank’s policy meeting, and Senate testimony from ex-FBI director James Comey due in the coming 24 hours. The Indian rupee was down 0.09 percent at 64.380 per dollar on Thursday. India’s central bank on Wednesday kept its policy repo rate unchanged at 6.25 percent, as widely expected, while lowering its projections for inflation after recent data showed consumer prices rising more slowly. “The RBI had also cut their inflation outlook for the months ahead, while the recent strength in the INR is detrimental to industry competitiveness.
01:00 pm: Tata Sons, the main promoter of Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), has raked in about Rs 10,278 crore by tendering in 3.61 crore shares in the recently concluded share buyback offer of TCS. The number of shares sold by Tata Sons represents almost two-thirds of the total shares on offer by TCS in the buy back scheme which ended on May 31. Post this buyback, Tata Sons holds 73.57% of TCS, while it’s holding before the buy back was 73.31%, while the general category’s shareholding fell to 26.43% from 26.69%. FE had earlier pointed out that to maintain their holding at the existing level, promoters needed to tender about 4.12 crore shares, leaving only 1.5 crore shares to be bought from the public, implying a minuscule 0.76% of the current share capital.
12:30 pm: The commerce and industry ministry will soon come out with the standard operating procedure (SOP) for clearance of foreign investments proposals as the government has abolished the FIPB. The Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) has prepared a draft SOP and is circulating it to different departments including the economic affairs for their views. “Within seven to ten days, we will release the procedure. Last month, India scrapped the 25-year old Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) as it looks to attract more FDI by providing quick approvals under a single-window clearance system.
12:10 pm: The market benchmark Sensex erased initial gains in late morning deals following the emergence of selling in sectors like IT, teck, energy, telecom and realty. On the other hand, metal and healthcare stocks witnessed sustained buying. Cautious trade in global markets ahead of the UK elections and testimony from sacked FBI head James Comey on his probe into Donald Trump’s links to Russia also influenced sentiment, brokers said. The BSE 30-share Sensex resumed higher at 31,316.91 and moved between 31,354.51 and 31,214.35.
11:55 am: Gold prices drifted further lower by 0.36 per cent to Rs 29,335 per 10 grammes in futures trading today as speculators trimmed their positions. At the Multi Commodity Exchange, gold for delivery in August fell by Rs 105, or 0.36 per cent to Rs 29,335 per ten grammes in business turnover of 792 lots.
11:40 am: Max India today said Max Life and HDFC Life remain committed to the merger and are evaluating various options after the insurance regulator Irdai again expressed reservations on the deal. In November last year, Irdai had posed reservations on the present form of amalgamation of Max Life and HDFC Life into a single entity to comply with Section 35 of the Insurance Act, 1938. Section 35 of the Insurance Act, 1938 does not allow the merger of an insurance firm with a non-insurance firm.
11:25 am: China reported stronger-than-anticipated exports and imports for May despite falling commodity prices, suggesting the economy is holding up better than expected despite rising lending rates and a cooling property market. Concerns over China landed squarely back on global investors’ radar after Moody’s Investors Service downgraded its credit rating last month, saying it expects the financial strength of the economy will erode in coming years as growth slows and debt continues to rise.
11:10 am: Reliance Nippon Life Asset Management (RNAM) will come up with an initial public offering (IPO) of equity shares of the company within this fiscal year which will value the company at about Rs 20,000 crore. RNAM is the asset manager of Reliance Mutual Fund and its IPO could be the first by a mutual fund company in India. The board of Reliance Nippon Life Asset Management (RNAM) today approved a proposal to list its shares on the stock exchanges, the company said.
10:50 am: Indian markets trade flat on the back of global cues with Nifty 50 down 8 points at 9,655.9 points while Sensex pares early gains, down 29 points at 31,242.62 points. Pharma sector stocks lead the benchmark Sensex with Sun Pharma, Dr Reddy’s, Cipla, Lupin gain up to 3% on the index.
10:30 am: Amazon.com Inc has stepped up lending to third-party sellers on its site who are looking to grow their business, a company executive said in an interview on Wednesday. The e-commerce giant has doled out more than $1 billion in small loans to sellers in the past 12 months, compared with more than $1.5 billion it lent from 2011 through 2015, said Peeyush Nahar, vice president for Amazon Marketplace. Sellers have used the money to expand their inventory or discount items on Amazon, he said.
10:15 am: The shares of heavyweight HDFC and HDFC Bank hit a fresh lifetime high if Rs 1,631.55 and Rs 1,659.4 as the financial services sector cheer after the Reserve Bank of India yesterday kept the repo rate unchanged, as widely expected, at 6.25% and the reverse repo at 6%.
10:00 am: Sensex, Nifty slip after flat opening as global cues weigh, RBI policy fails to cheer ahead of key global events and after the Reserve Bank of India’s monetary policy review yesterday. The UK goes to vote today in an early general election announced by Prime Minister Theresa May in mid-April. The European Central Bank (ECB) is likely to keep the money taps fully open at its meeting on Thursday as inflation remains below its target despite stronger economic growth in the eurozone, said a Reuters report.
09:50 am: The rupee depreciated by 6 paise to 64.39 against the US dollar in early trade today at the forex market on increased demand for the American currency from importers and banks. Besides, dollar’s gains against its rivals overseas also weakened sentiment locally. However, a higher opening in the domestic equity market capped the losses to some extent.
09:45 am: Indian markets slip after opening up slightly higher. The benchmark Sensex falls 54 points at 31,216.63 points while the broader Nifty 50 edges below 9,650, down 20 points to trade at 9,643.9 points.
09:30 am: Mid-cap stocks cheer as the shares of ICICI Prudential (at Rs 428), LIC Housing Finance (at Rs 749.9), Motherson Sumi (at Rs 464.3) and Colgate-Palmolive (at Rs 1,076) hit a fresh 52-week high on NSE’s Nifty Next 50. The stocks of financial services and metal firms are in focus.
09:15 am: Domestic stock markets open marginally higher with BSE Sensex up 0.15% at 31,316.91 points while NSE Nifty eyes to 9,700, up 0.19% at 9,682.4 points in the opening trade. The shares of HDFC Bank and IndusInd Bank hits a new all-time high of Rs 1,651 and Rs 1,524 while ICICI Bank stock trades near the 52-week high at Rs 327. Meanwhile the banking index of NSE, Nifty Bank also hit a record high of 23,659.1 points.
With inputs from Reuters and PTI.