Indian markets on Wednesday surged for the third straight session, with Sensex closing 49,734 and Nifty at 14,864 on buying in banks and financials. Globally, traders focused on the policy decision of the US Federal Reserve and earnings updates from a number of blue-chip companies.
Sensex, Nifty end in the green for the third day
Indian markets made stellar gains for the third consecutive session on Wednesday led by banks, financials and auto stocks. Sensex ended up 790 points at 49,733 and Nifty closed 1.4% higher at 14,864. Nifty Bank ended 3% higher, while metal, pharma and realty were the outliers among sectoral indices as they ended with losses. Bajaj Finance rose 8% as investors cheered the lender’s Q4 earnings. Of the 30 shares on Sensex, six players ended in the red. The index touched a high of 49,801 and a low of 49,066 intraday.
Govt sets allocation of covid drug Tocilizumab to states
Taking note of the shortage of drugs to treat covid-19, the Union health ministry on Wednesday allocated a fresh stock of imported drug Tocilizumab, among states.
“The drug went out of stock in the country a few weeks ago due to a sudden surge in its demand because of a sharp rise in Covid-19 cases in the country in this month. Fresh limited stock of this drug has now been imported and is available with the lone marketer company Cipla Ltd. for marketing and distribution in the country. An interim allocation of this drug among states has been finalized jointly by MoHFW and the DoP in consultation with the company,” the ministry said in a statement.
SBI board clears $2 billion fund raising plan
SBI board today approved a proposal to raise up to $2 billion.
“To examine the status and decide on long term fund raising in single / multiple tranches up to US$ 2 Billion (US$ Two Billion) under Reg-S/144A, through a public offer and / or private placement of senior unsecured notes in US Dollar or any other convertible currency during FY2021 -22,” the lender informed the stock exchanges.
IBM leveraging its voice and influence to rally global support for India: CEO
As India is experiencing a devastating surge in the number of covid-19 cases, IBM Corp. is leveraging its voice and influence to rally global support for the country, said Arvind Krishna, chairman and chief executive officer, IBM.
“This weekend I joined US business leaders in urging the Biden administration to expedite assistance. We are also now working with the US and Indian governments as well as the US-India Strategic Partnership Forum, the Business Roundtable and the US-India Business Council within the US Chamber of Commerce to accelerate critical aid,” Krishna wrote in an email to employees.
IBM has donated funds for 2,500 oxygen concentrators and working with local partners to fund emergency hospital beds in communities where its teams live and work, Krishna said.
Cabinet approves signing pact with UK for info sharing, prevent customs offences
The Cabinet on Wednesday approved the signing of an agreement between India and the UK for sharing information and prevent customs offences.
“The Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, has approved the signing and ratification of an Agreement between the Government of Republic of India and the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland on Customs Cooperation and Mutual Administrative Assistance in Customs Matters,” an official statement said.
Embassy REIT subscribes to WELL portfolio program for safe office buildings
Embassy REIT, the first listed real estate investment trust in India, on Wednesday said it has subscribed to the WELL Portfolio program by the International WELL Building Institute (IWBI) to create healthier office buildings and business ecosystems in the country.
IWBI helps in advancing health and well-being in buildings, communities and organizations. Embassy REIT’s participation in IWBI’s WELL Portfolio program further augments its commitment to creating healthier and safer office environments as health and wellness take centre stage in a post covid-19 office environment, the company said.
Auto stocks zoom; TVS Motor rallies 17%
BSE SmallCap up 0.85%,
Markets up globally
Asian and European markets rose Wednesday ahead of the Federal Reserve’s latest policy meeting and US President Joe Biden’s first speech to Congress later in the day.
Nikkei 225 closed 0.2% higher at 29,053.97
Hang Seng Index ended with 0.5% gain at 29,071.34
Shanghai’s Composite settled 0.4% higher at 3,457.07
London’s FTSE was 0.4% higher at 6,974.88
DRDO to set up 500 medical oxygen plants in India under PM CARES fund
The Defence Research and Development Organization on Wednesday said it would be setting up 500 medical oxygen plants in the country under the PM CARES fund.
DRDO said the medical oxygen plant technology was developed to supply oxygen on board the light combat aircraft by the Defence Bioengineering and Electromedical Laboratory (DEBEL). DEBEL is a unit under the DRDO. The same technology will be used to fight the current oxygen crisis facing covid-19 patients in the country.
HDFC AMC’s steady market share erosion worries investors
Shares of HDFC Asset Management Co. Ltd have been under pressure for the past one month and the company’s March quarter results doesn’t seem to have given enough reasons to rejoice.
The company has been losing market share for the past two years. On a quarterly average asset under management basis, the fund house’s share stood at 16.7% in March, down from 17.2% in December and 16.9% a year ago. On an outstanding AUM basis, the market share erosion is steep, from 20.9% in FY20 to 15.7% in FY21. What’s more is the share in terms of unique investors has also come down for the company. In short, investors are preferring rivals over the company for products. (Full report)
Morepen board approves investment by Switzerland-based Corinth Group; shares up 6%
Morepen Laboratories Ltd on Wednesday said its board has approved $32.50 million investment in the firm by Switzerland-based Corinth Group, out of a total of $100 million investment by the private investment firm. The balance $67.50 million will be invested in promoter group companies.
The said investment is subject to approval of shareholders and other regulatory bodies, after which Corinth will be allotted 58.5 million new equity shares on preferential basis, equivalent to 9.41% stake, a BSE release said.
BLS International up 1.5%; wins three-year national identity project for Nigerian citizens in UK
BLS International Services Ltd, an IT services company focussed on government, has won a three-year contract to manage the identity management services for Nigerians in London, UK.
During the contract period, BLS in partnership with File Solutions Ltd, a data and digital enrollment service company, will support the initiative by the National Identity Management Commission in Nigeria to enroll Nigerian citizens into the national identity database.
Bank Nifty up 2.4%, RBL Bank, Indusind Bank in focus
BES MidCap up 1%, TVS Motor zooms 12%
S&P hints at possible downgrade of India GDP projection
Rating agency Standard & Poor’s on Wednesday cautioned that the second wave of coronavirus pandemic heightens the possibility of business disruptions and poses serious downside risks to India’s economic growth which may force it to downgrade its GDP projection for India.
“As daily infection cases exceed 300,000, the outbreak is putting severe pressure on the country’s health infrastructure. A drawn-out covid-19 outbreak will impede India’s economic recovery. This may prompt us to revise our base-case assumption of 11% growth over fiscal 2021/2022, particularly if the government is forced to reimpose broad containment measures. The country already faces a permanent loss of output versus its pre-pandemic path, suggesting a long-term production deficit equivalent to about 10% of GDP,” it added.
Sensex heavyweights Bajaj Finance, Axis Bank, SBI lead rally
Bank of India up 1.5%
The board of the lender will meet on 30 April to consider the proposal of raising capital, including by way of a further issue of equity shares and Basel III compliant additional Tier-1 and Tier-II bonds.
Former Xander executive Amar Merani joins IIFL as real estate strategy head
IIFL Asset Management Company (AMC) on Wednesday said it has appointed Amar Merani as head of real estate strategy, where he will lead the team in managing investments and building the company’s client base.
Merani joins from Xander Finance, the non-banking financial company (NBFC) of Xander Group Inc, where he was the CEO since 2012.
TVS Motor’s all-time high Ebitda margin in Q4 gets amply rewarded by investors; stock up 15%
Shares of TVS Motor Company Ltd’s rose more than 15% in early deals on Wednesday on the National Stock Exchange, hitting a new 52-week high. Not without reason. The two-wheeler company’s March quarter (Q4FY21) results announced after market hours on Tuesday have surprised the Street positively, especially on the profit margin front.
The company’s standalone earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (Ebitda) margin expanded by around 60 basis points vis-à-vis the December quarter to 10.1%. One basis point is one-hundredth of a percentage point. On a year-on-year basis, Ebitda margin has improved by 304 basis points. (Read more)
Bajaj Finserv gains 4%, Q4 income up 15%
Consolidated net profit came in at ₹979 crore vs ₹194.4 crore
ADB upgrades its GDP projection for India to 11% for FY22
The Asian Development Bank (ADB ) upgraded its India growth projection for FY22 to 11% from 8% earlier, assuming that the second wave of the coronavirus
pandemic is contained, and vaccines are deployed extensively across the country.
“To contain this second wave of COVID-19, the vaccine rollout may need to accelerate further, which would require more vaccine supply, a strengthened regulatory regime for vaccine approval, and heightened private sector participation. While containing COVID-19 is still key to economic recovery, global experience suggests that economic impacts from subsequent waves are smaller than from the first if nationwide lockdowns are avoided,” ADB said in its latest Asian Development Outlook.
Broad market positive; fear gauge down
Sensex at day’s high, up 500 points
HDFC AMC down 2%
The AMC on Tuesday reported a 26.5% growth in profit after tax at ₹316.08 crore for the three months to March. Total income rose 21.3% to ₹545.57 crore in Q4.
India Inc steps up efforts to fill gaps in healthcare infrastructure
Indian companies are stepping in to fill the gaps in India’s healthcare infrastructure, crumbling under an explosion of covid-19 cases, supplying medical oxygen, cryogenic vessels, and oxygen concentrators. The Tata group, Reliance Industries Ltd, JSW Group, Adani group, ITC Ltd, and Jindal Steel and Power Ltd are among many top Indian companies helping hospitals with emergency supplies.
Britannia Industries down more than 1%
The FMCG major reported a 3% decline in consolidated net profit at ₹360.07 crore in the fourth quarter ended March, impacted by rise in commodity prices. Consolidated total revenue from operations grew 9% to ₹3,130.75 crore.
Axis Bank’s Q4 cheers, but high contingent provisions raises eyebrows
If anything is about to go wrong, it will go wrong. Perhaps this Murphy’s Law is what Axis Bank believes in, although its March quarter performance has given enough reasons for investors to expect better days ahead.
The private sector lender reported a sequential fall in its gross bad loan ratio, and its restructuring loan pile was less than 1% of the total portfolio. Fresh slippages for the March quarter at ₹5285 crore, which analysts at Jefferies India Pvt Ltd termed as marginally higher than expected. The management’s commentary showed optimism on the outlook notwithstanding the threat from the second wave of the pandemic. (Read more)
ABB India reports strong operating performance in Q1, sustenance key
A key positive takeaway from ABB India’s March quarter earnings was its strong operating performance with Ebitda at ₹130 crore, beating analysts’ estimates.
Shares of the company rose around 2% on the NSE in Tuesday’s opening trade reacting to its Q1 earnings. The company follows calendar year as financial year. (Read more)
Anupam Rasayan up 4.5%; bags order worth ₹1,100 crore
Anupam Rasayan on Wednesday said it has bagged an order worth ₹1,100 crore for supplying life sciences related speciality chemicals.
The company has received and signed letter of intent amounting to ₹1,100 crore from one of the top 10 multinational life sciences company for supplying life sciences related speciality chemicals, Anupam Rasayan said in a regulatory filing.
The company said it will provide multiple products in the category to the multinational firm for the next five years.
RBI says committee on ARCs invites views and suggestions from stakeholders by 31 May
Zomato files draft offer document for ₹8250 crore IPO
Foodtech platform, Zomato Ltd on Wednesday filed its draft red herring prospectus with market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India for its ₹8,250 crore initial public offering.
In line with this the company will be issuing fresh equity shares worth ₹7500 crores, along with the company’s early backer Info Edge India Ltd. selling its stake worth ₹750 crore in Zomato’s upcoming public offering.
As per the Zomato’s latest shareholding pattern, Info Edge is the largest shareholder and controls 18.5% in the company, followed by Uber B.V. holding 9.13%, with Alipay Singapore Holding Pte. Ltd. and Antfin Singapore Holding Pte. Ltd. holding close to 8.33% and 8.22% in the company respectively.
Covid update: India reports biggest-ever spike, 3.6 lakh new cases in 24 hours
A total of 3,60,960 new COVID-19 cases, 3,293 related deaths, and 2,61,162 recoveries were reported in the last 24 hours, taking the total active cases to 29,78,709, as per the health ministry update on Wednesday morning.
The total count of positive cases now stands at 1,79,97,267, including 2,01,187 deaths and 1,48,17,371 recoveries.
The Indian Rupee surged 21 paise to 74.45 against the US dollar in early trade
TVS Motor hits 15% upper circuit
The company posted nearly four-fold increase in its consolidated net profit to ₹319.19 crore for the fourth quarter ended March, riding on the back of robust sales in the domestic and international markets. Revenue from operations rose to ₹6,131.90 crore from ₹4,104.71 crore.
Lenders set aside provisions to cover interest refunds
Large lenders have started setting aside money to cover against compound interest refunds for the March-August period they will need to make, even as the government remains non-committal on reimbursing them.
HDFC Bank and ICICI Bank have set aside a total of ₹675 crore towards this, and other banks are expected to follow. This comes after the Supreme Court said last month that every borrower should be refunded the compound interest during the moratorium period, irrespective of the loan outstanding. This round of refund will be applicable to every borrower with loans above ₹2 crore, not part of the last round announced by the government in October. The Indian Banks’ Association (IBA) had written to the finance ministry soon after the court order last month and is now preparing a methodology to compute the refund. (Full story)
Info Edge India up 1%
The company will be selling its stake worth ₹750 crore in Zomato’s upcoming public offering. Info Edge, which has been an early backer of the foodtech platform owned almost 18.4% stake in the company, after its latest funding round in February, this year.
Gold extends loss
Gold prices extended their losses to the fifth day in Indian markets amid weak global cues. On MCX, gold futures fell 0.32% to ₹47,151 per 10 gram while silver tumbled 0.9% to ₹69,603 per kg.
Bajaj Finance up 2.5%
The largest non-bank lender reported a 42% jump in consolidated net profit to ₹1,347 crore at the end of March owing to improved asset quality. The company said it can mitigate any disruption caused by the second wave of covid infections in the first quarter.
All sectors in green, barring pharma and metal
Sensex soars 300 points at open
Sensex, Nifty open strong
Sensex, Nifty in the green in pre-opening session
India to grow at 9% in FY22: Brickwork
Brickwork Ratings on Tuesday revised its FY22 growth projections for India to 9% from 11% estimated earlier. It said the presumptions of a V shaped recovery is not likely with the second wave bringing an abrupt halt to its nascent economic recovery.
“Many state governments have imposed lockdowns to contain the virus spread. These curbs restrict most of the normal activities, thus putting livelihoods at risk. Concerned with uncertain future, exodus of migrants from urban agglomerations has started. This has added to the humanitarian crisis due to the non-availability of beds, ventilators and oxygen supplies. In this scenario, the earlier presumptions of a V shaped economic recovery is unlikely,” M. Govinda Rao, chief economic advisor, Brickwork Ratings, said in a statement.
India, Japan and Australia unveil supply chain initiative
In a move to counter China’s dominance of supply chain in the Indo-Pacific region, trade ministers of India, Japan and Australia on Tuesday formally launched the Supply Chain Resilience Initiative (SCRI) in a virtual trilateral ministerial meeting.
“The SCRI aims to create a virtuous cycle of enhancing supply chain resilience with a view to eventually attaining strong, sustainable, balanced and inclusive growth in the region. The ministers consented that expansion of the SCRI may be considered based on consensus, if needed, in due course,” the three trade ministers said in a joint statement. (Full report)
Small firms seek compliance relief
Small enterprises facing business loss and manpower shortage have asked the government to provide more compliance relief and said the economic downturn and the devastating second wave of the pandemic are bringing them to their knees.
Small firms have asked for relaxation in monthly goods and services tax (GST) payments and various filing requirements for the just-concluded fiscal. Regional restrictions on movement and normal business activities make it hard to comply, they said. (Full report)
Indian markets likely to consolidate
Indian stock markets are likely to consolidate on Wednesday, while trends in SGX Nifty suggests a flat to positive opening for domestic benchmark indices. On Tuesday, the BSE Sensex ended at 48,944.14, up 557.63 points or 1.15%. The Nifty closed at 14,653.05, up 168.05 points or 1.16%.
Oil slips on covid crisis in India
Oil prices dropped on Wednesday, paring overnight gains, with soaring covid-19 cases in India and a bigger-than-expected build in US crude stocks offsetting confidence shown by OPEC and its allies in a solid recovery in global fuel demand.
Brent crude futures fell 26 cents to $66.16 a barrel, paring a 1.2% gain from Tuesday. US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures fell 23 cents to $62.71 a barrel, after gaining 1.7% on Tuesday.
Stocks to Watch: Axis Bank, Bajaj Finance, Britannia, Info Edge
Among stocks that will be in focus on Wednesday are Axis Bank, Bajaj Finance, Britannia, Info Edge, TVS Motor, Bank of India and Future Lifestyle.
Major companies that will report their March quarter earnings are Bajaj Finserv, Biocon Ltd, Chennai Petroleum, Hathway Cable & Datacom, and Tata Communications.
Asian markets mixed as investors exercise caution
Asian stocks were mixed on Wednesday amid caution following a renewed rise in Treasury yields and a jump in commodity prices, and ahead of the Federal Reserve’s policy decision.
Japan’s Topix Index rose 0.4%
South Korea’s Kospi Index was down 0.9%
Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index was up 0.5%
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index rose 0.2%
U.S. indices end flat
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 3.36 points, or 0.01%, to 33,984.93, the S&P 500 lost 0.9 points, or 0.02%, to 4,186.72 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 48.56 points, or 0.34%, to 14,090.22.