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Telecom stocks edge lower

A bout of volatility was witnessed as the barometer index, the S&P Sensex, hit its lowest level in nearly three weeks. The 50-unit CNX hovered near the day’s low. Earlier, the Nifty had hit its lowest level in nearly three weeks in mid-morning trade. The was currently off 288.23 points or 1.01% at 28,153.87. The market breadth indicating the overall health of the market was weak. The BSE Small-Cap index was off 1.11%. The decline in index was higher than the Sensex’s decline in percentage terms. Losses ranged from 2% to about 18% for quite a few stocks which are the constituents of the BSE Small-Cap index.

In overseas markets, European markets edged higher after China’s central bank over the weekend cut the amount of money that banks must hold as reserves. Chinese stocks led decline in Asian stocks after China’s securities regulator after on Friday, 17 April 2015, tightened rules on margin lending and the Chinese local stock exchanges eased restrictions on short-selling of stocks. The announcement came after end of the trading session in Asian markets on Friday, 17 April 2015.

Cement shares advanced. Telecom stocks declined.

Meanwhile, data released by the government after trading hours on Friday, 17 April 2015, showed that India’s merchandise exports (including re-exports) dipped 21.06% to $23951.16 million in March 2015 over March 2014

Foreign portfolio investors sold shares worth a net Rs 675.71 crore during the previous trading session on Friday, 17 April 2015, as per provisional data released by the stock exchanges. Domestic institutional investors (DIIs) bought shares worth a net Rs 72.52 crore on Friday, 17 April 2015, as per provisional data released by the stock exchanges.

At 13:17 IST, the S&P BSE Sensex was down 288.23 points or 1.01% at 28,153.87. The index fell 300.48 points at the day’s low of 28,141.62 in afternoon trade, its lowest level since 1 April 2015. The index rose 97.36 points at the day’s high of 28,539.46 at the onset of trading session.

The CNX Nifty was down 70.35 points or 0.82% at 8,535.65. The index hit a low of 8,529.15 in intraday trade, its lowest level since 1 April 2015. The index hit a high of 8,619.95 in intraday trade.

The BSE Mid-Cap index was down 106.50 points or 0.99% at 10,665.27. The decline in the index was lower than Sensex’s decline in percentage terms. The BSE Small-Cap index was down 129.06 points or 1.11% at 11,493.17. The decline in the index was higher than the Sensex’s decline in percentage terms.

The market breadth indicating the overall health of the market was weak. On BSE, 1,654 shares fell and 925 shares rose. A total of 98 shares were unchanged.

Telecom stocks declined. Bharti Airtel (down 0.27%), Idea Cellular (down 1.5%), Reliance Communications (down 2.29%), Tata Teleservices (Maharashtra) (down 1.42%), and Mahanagar Telephone Nigam (down 2.99%) edged lower.

Cement stocks advanced. ACC (up 2%), Shree Cement (up 0.58%), and UltraTech Cement (up 0.22%) edged higher.

Ambuja Cements rose 2.09% at Rs 251.95. With respect to news titled, “Shree cement, Heidelberg cement, JSW group, Ambuja Cement, CRH in race to acquire Lafarge assets,” Ambuja Cements clarified during trading hours that the company does not have any comment to offer on the captioned news item. The company said it was commitment to fair disclosure in line with the applicable laws, rules & regulations.

Grasim Industries rose 0.5% at Rs 3,676. Grasim Industries has exposure to cement sector through its subsidiary UltraTech Cement.

Bharat Heavy Electricals (Bhel) fell 0.72% at Rs 233.15. The stock hit a high of Rs 235.90 and a low of Rs 232 so far during the day. Bhel during market hours today, 20 April 2015, said that the company has successfully commissioned a 250 megawatts (MW) coal-based thermal power plant in Gujarat. The unit has been commissioned at Gujarat State Electricity Corporation (GSECL) Sikka Thermal Power Station (TPS) by Bhel on engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) basis.

Meanwhile, data released by the government after trading hours on Friday, 17 April 2015, showed that India’s merchandise exports (including re-exports) dipped 21.06% to $23951.16 million in March 2015 over March 2014. Imports fell 13.44% to $35744.68 million in March 2015 over March 2014. Oil imports declined 52.68% to $7413.30 million in March 2015 over March 2014. Non-oil imports rose 10.55% to $28331.38 million in March 2015 over March 2014. The trade deficit for fiscal year 2014-15 was estimated at $137014.46 million, which was higher than trade deficit of $135797.90 million for fiscal year 2013-14.

Proceedings in the parliament during the second half of the Budget session which began today, 20 April 2015, are being closely watched as the government hopes to pass the Constitution Amendment Bill for the introduction of a nationwide Goods and Services Tax (GST) in the country. The government had tabled the Constitution Amendment Bill for GST in the Lok Sabha during the winter session of parliament. GST, touted as the single biggest indirect taxation reforms since independence, will simplify and harmonise the indirect tax regime in the country. Central taxes like Central Excise Duty, Additional Excise Duties, Service Tax, Additional Customs Duty (CVD) and Special Additional Duty of Customs (SAD), etc. will be subsumed in GST. At the state level, taxes like VAT/Sales Tax, Central Sales Tax, Entertainment Tax, Octroi and Entry Tax, Purchase Tax and Luxury Tax, etc. would be subsumed in GST.

In overseas markets, European markets edged higher after China’s central bank over the weekend cut the amount of money that banks must hold as reserves. Chinese stocks led decline in Asian stocks after China’s securities regulator after on Friday, 17 April 2015, tightened rules on margin lending and the Chinese local stock exchanges eased restrictions on short-selling of stocks. The announcement came after end of the trading session in Asian markets on Friday, 17 April 2015. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index was off 2.06%. In mainland China, the Shanghai Composite index was off 1.61%.

The People’s Bank of China (PBOC) yesterday, 19 April 2015, announced reduction in reserve requirement ratio (RRR) for all banks by 100 basis points to 18.5% to be effective from 20 April 2015. Meanwhile, China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) on Saturday, 18 April 2015, stressed that there was no desire to suppress the hot after unveiling a raft of measures on Friday, 17 April 2015, to curb margin trading. Meanwhile, the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock exchanges on Friday, 17 April 2015, issued rules that would make it easier for investors to short, or bet against, stocks. To short a stock, an investor borrows shares and sells them, hoping the price will fall and so allow them to repay with cheaper shares. It has been difficult to short stocks in China even as valuations soared because it has been virtually impossible to borrow shares.

Meanwhile, global markets are closely monitoring developments with regard to Greece. Eurozone finance ministers scheduled to hold a meeting on Friday, 24 April 2015, to discuss the state of negotiations between Greece and its international creditors. The country’s Syriza-led government has been locked in negotiations with its international creditors since coming to power in late January, with progress slow. Greece needs to strike a deal within the next few months to secure billions of euros in bailout aid to avoid defaulting on its debts and potentially exiting the euro.

Official Resource[Business Standard]

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