Nifty ends below 6150; Maruti up 7%, ICICI Bank falls 2%

03:50 pm FOMC meet expectations: Turmoil in emerging markets and a month of disappointing job growth at home are unlikely to deter the Federal Reserve from trimming its bond-buying stimulus on Wednesday, as Ben Bernanke wraps up his last policy meeting at the helm of the US central bank.

Overall signs of improvement in the US economy suggest Fed officials will stay on track to cut monthly purchases of Treasuries and mortgage-backed securities by USD 5 billion each, bringing the total of their monthly asset purchases to USD 65 billion.

The meeting is Bernanke's last before Vice Chair Janet Yellen moves into the top spot.

Bernanke took the Fed far into uncharted territory during his eight years on the job, building a USD 4 trillion balance sheet and keeping interest rates near zero for more than five years to pull the economy from its worst downturn in decades.

03:40 pm Market closing:
The market ended volatile trading session on a flat note. The Nifty ended below 615, down 6 points at 6120.25. The Sensex slipped 36.21 points to 20647.30. Banking stocks dragged during the day with the Bank Nifty falling 1 percent. Metal stocks too were under pressure while capital goods, IT and pharma stocks ended in green.

03:30 pm Market outlook:
Tarun Kataria, chairman, Cityspring Advisors is cautious on India given the stability seen in the rupee and the Asian markets.

Kataria says the market is looking a little bit firmer and what the government and the central bank has done across the last three-four months is exactly the right thing by focusing on inflation. On sector preference, Kataria is bullish on IT, FMCG stocks and IndusInd from the banking space.

"I would continue to be defensive oriented, continue to be FX impact oriented. The consumer story continues to be robust. But the comments I make are really about long-term. The banks also continue to be under stress and I believe will be for the next at least six-eight quarters," he said.

03:20 pm Spectrum allocation:
Government's resolution on the contentious issue of spectrum usage fee seems to have found favour with telecom operators with none of them withdrawing their application from airways auction on the last day yesterday.

'No,' a Department of Telecom official said when asked if any of the eight applicants has withdrawn application for participating in auction.

Bharti Airtel , Vodafone, Reliance Jio Infocomm, Idea Cellular , Telewings (Uninor) , Reliance Communications , Tata Teleservices and Aircel are in race to bid for about 403 Mhz of airwaves in 1800 MHz band and 46 MHz spectrum in 900 MHz band.

The Empowered Group of Ministers on telecom, headed by Finance Minister P Chidambaram, decided on Monday to levy annual spectrum usage charge (SUC) on new airwaves for mobile services at 5 percent of their adjusted gross revenue earned from telecom services. The present rate is in the range of 3-8 percent.

03:10 pm Results:
Two-wheeler maker TVS Motor reported 31 percent growth in third quarter bottomline and 13 percent in topline compared to a year ago period, driven by strong operational performance.

Net profit increased 31 percent to Rs 68.8 crore from Rs 52.5 crore and revenues jumped to Rs 2,057.6 crore from Rs 1,821.6 crore year-on-year.

On the operational front, earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation climbed 15 percent on yearly basis to Rs 123 crore and operating profit margin expanded 10 basis points to 6 percent in the quarter ended December 2013.

02:59pm Market Update
The market is unable to hold firm in the last few minutes of trading. The Sensex is down 21.79 points  at 20661.72, and the Nifty down 0.15 points  at 6126.10.About 1228 shares have advanced, 1245 shares declined, and 207 shares are unchanged.

Infosys , L&T, Sun Pharma , ONGC and Axis Bank are most positive contributors to the Sensex.

02:51pm Polaris Financial slips 2% post Q3 earnings
Polaris Financial Technology's consolidated net profit fell 14.7 percent sequentially to Rs 51 crore in the quarter ended December 2013 on high base.

The software services provider had recorded exceptional gain of Rs 14.2 crore in September quarter. Excluding that the profit grew nearly 12 percent.

Consolidated total income rose 0.7 percent to Rs 614.2 crore and operating profit jumped 13 percent to Rs 69 crore compared to previous year.

Operating profit margin expanded 112 basis points to 11.2 percent quarter-on-year.

02:41pm TVS Motor surges 6% post Q3 earnings
Two-wheeler maker TVS Motor reported 31 percent growth in third quarter bottomline and 13 percent in topline compared to a year ago period.

Net profit increased 31 percent to Rs 68.8 crore from Rs 52.5 crore and revenues jumped to Rs 2,057.6 crore from Rs 1,821.6 crore year-on-year.

On the operational front, earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation climbed 15 percent on yearly basis to Rs 123 crore and operating profit margin expanded 10 basis points to 6 percent in the quarter ended December 2013.

02:31pm ICICI Bank delivers Q3 earnings
India's biggest private sector lender ICICI Bank reported stable numbers in the third quarter with the net profit growing 12.5 percent to Rs 2,532.2 crore compared to a year ago period, supported by higher net interest income and non interest income (other income).

This was after the additional tax provision of Rs 215 crore for deferred tax liability on special reserve for the nine months ended December 31, 2013. "Growth in profit after tax excluding this impact was 22 percent," the bank said in its release.

The CNBC-TV18 poll of analysts had expected the bank to report net profit of Rs 2,476 crore and net interest income of Rs 4,213 crore.

Net interest income, the difference between interest earned and interest expended, grew 21.6 percent year-on-year to Rs 4,255 crore in the quarter ended December 2013, driven by retail banking operations.

02:21pm Equity benchmarks are firm in afternoon trade as the rose 70.11 points to 20,753.62, and the Nifty climbed 26.75 points to 6,153.

The broader markets outperformed benchmarks marginally; the BSE Midcap Index gained 0.6 percent and Smallcap advanced 0.4 percent. About 1272 shares have advanced, 1137 shares declined, and 214 shares are unchanged.

Oil marketing companies are on fire today as sources said the Cabinet will decide on hiking LPG cap to 12 from 9 on Thursday. BPCL rallied 4 percent while HPCL and IOC surged 6 percent each.

Maruti Suzuki maintained its top position in the buying list, rising 8 percent on short covering and value buying after the management clarified that the Gujarat unit expansion will not have any impact on profitability of the company.

Shares of Infosys, L&T, ICICI Bank, Sun Pharma, Axis Bank, Hero Motocorp , Cipla and Wipro gained 1-3 percent while Sesa Sterlite toppped the selling list, losing 2.5 percent.

ITC , HDFC , Reliance Industries , SBI , Tata Steel , Bharti Airtel, Bajaj Auto , HUL and Hindalco Industries lost 0.4-1.6 percent.

2:00 pm News on Taper: Turmoil in emerging markets and a month of disappointing job growth at home are unlikely to deter the Federal Reserve from trimming its bond-buying stimulus on Wednesday, as Ben Bernanke wraps up his last policy meeting at the helm of the US central bank, reports Reuters.

Overall signs of improvement in the US economy suggest Fed officials will stay on track to cut monthly purchases of Treasuries and mortgage-backed securities by USD 5 billion each, bringing the total of their monthly asset purchases to USD65 billion.

The meeting is Bernanke's last before Vice Chair Janet Yellen moves into the top spot.

1:50 pm RBI speaks: The Reserve Bank of India has not raised interest rates to fight off the recent global emerging market sell-off, but to tamp down inflationary pressures, Governor Raghuram Rajan said, reports Reuters.

"I think for (some) time we have been saying very clearly we are focused on preserving the value of the rupee, in the domestic context," he told analysts on a conference call a day after the central bank unexpectedly raised its key rate by 25 basis points.

"Preserving it in the domestic context will preserve it in the international context. Preserving in the domestic context means bringing inflation under control. Once we do that, we believe investor confidence naturally follows," he said.

1:40 pm Buzzing: Shares of Shalimar Paints lost 5 percent intraday on Wednesday.  The paint company's net declined 67.16 percent to Rs 1.54 crore in December quarter, due to rise in raw material costs.

The company had posted a profit of Rs 4.69 crore in the same period of previous fiscal.  During the period, the company's net sales fell to Rs 127.57 crore in the October-December 2013 quarter compared to Rs 129.46 crore in the same period a year ago.

''We are changing our business model by improving product mix and streamlining cost to achieve profitable growth. We are continuing our investment on building talent pipeline which helps us with this transformation,'' Sameer Ngapal, MD and CEO, Shalimar Paints said.

1:30 pm Interview: Jindal Steel and Power today reported a 35 percent decline in its Q3FY14 consolidated net profit to Rs 561.57 crore versus Rs 867.27 reported in the corresponding period of the previous fiscal. Sharing views on the company's financial performance, MD and CEO Ravi Uppal said, ''PAT has not been as good as we had in Q3 last year, reason being that we have the additional load of interest and depreciation plus the price realisation has not been as good as we had last year.'' He further added that the company's total steel production increased by 10 percent in Q3FY14 compared to the same quarter last year and about 6.5 percent compared to the last quarter.

The market has turned flat as Nifty slipped below 6150-level. The Nifty is up 16.45 points at 6142.70 and the Sensex is up 38.15 points at 20721.66. About 1223 shares have advanced, 1084 shares declined, and 217 shares are unchanged.

Maruti Suzuki remains to be the top gainer in the Sensex, followed by BHEL , Hero Motocorp , Sun Pharma and Cipla . Among the laggards are Sesa Sterlite, Tata Steel , Hindalco , SBI and Bharti Airtel .

India's leading public sector bank, State Bank of India has launched a Qualified institutional placement (QIP) book to raise close to USD 1.5 billion. According to investment banking sources, the QIP price band is Rs 1,565-1,596 per share. The book will close for global and local investors today. According to sources, LIC is likely to be one of the key anchor investors to the QIP issue.

UB group stocks are in focus as CNBC-TV18 reported quoting sources that learns that Heineken has offered to buy additional 5 percent stake at a marginal premium in United Breweries . Heineken is likely to have been offered Rs 1,115 crore. The other UB Group in focus is United Spirits . Sources say USL may finalise proposal to issue fresh preferential shares to Diageo.

12:35pm ICICI Bank up 1% post Q3 earnings
India's biggest private sector lender ICICI Bank reported stable numbers in the third quarter with the net profit growing 12.5 percent to Rs 2,532.2 crore compared to a year ago period.

This was after the additional tax provision of Rs 215 crore for deferred tax liability on special reserve for the nine months ended December 31, 2013. "Growth in profit after tax excluding this impact was 22 percent," the bank said in its release.

The CNBC-TV18 poll of analysts had expected the bank to report net profit of Rs 2,476 crore and net interest income of Rs 4,213 crore.

Net interest income, the difference between interest earned and interest expended, grew 21.6 percent year-on-year to Rs 4,255 crore in the quarter ended December 2013.

12:11pm The market maintained its positive momentum in noon trade with the Nifty holding the 6150 level supported by technology and banks.

The Sensex rose 81.50 points to 20,765.01, and the Nifty climbed 27.85 points to 6,154.10. About 1255 shares have advanced, 873 shares declined, and 211 shares are unchanged.

The broader markets too gained; the BSE Midcap Index advanced 0.6 percent and Smallcap added 0.5 percent.

Maruti Suzuki, which was the biggest loser with 8 percent loss on Tuesday post results, gained nearly 7 percent today as the management clarified that the Gujarat unit expansion will not have any impact on profitability.

Indoco Remedies fell 4 percent despite its third quarter net profit doubled to Rs 14.1 crore from Rs 7.4 crore year-on-year and net sales increased 25.3 percent to Rs 188.4 crore in the quarter gone by.

Claris Life surges 3 percent as the company received USFDA approval for Diuretic Furosemide injection generic.

Godrej Properties is marginally in green after its third quarter consolidated net profit increased to Rs 37.4 crore from Rs 35.5 crore year-on-year.

11:50 am Exclusive: Dutch brewer Heineken is learnt to have made an offer for acquiring an additional 5 percent stake in United Breweries , reports CNBC-TV18's Kritika Saxena, quoting unnamed sources. Heineken, which holds a shade below 39 percent in UB , has bid Rs 1115 crore for the stake, which works out to around Rs 844 a share. Sources said UB promoters are not too kicked about the price, which is only slightly higher than the current market price of around Rs 810.

11:40 am Poll: ICICI Bank , the country's largest private sector lender, will announce its third quarter earnings today. Profit after tax is expected to grow 10 percent year-on-year to Rs 2,476 crore and net interest income may rise 20 percent to Rs 4,213 crore in the quarter ended December 2013.

Kotak Securities is expecting a 2 percent growth only in profits due to higher provisions. In case of asset quality, analysts expect higher restructuring with flattish slippages on sequential basis while net interest margin (NIM) is expected to stable Q-o-Q at 3.31 percent.

ICICI Bank had increased its net interest margin guidance for FY14 to 20 basis points higher as against 10 bps Y-o-Y.

11:30 am Analyst views on Bharti Airtel : Suresh Mahadevan of UBS AG is positive on Bharti Airtel.  He feels the stock may touch Rs 420. According to him, the February 3 spectrum auction could emerge as a positive catalyst especially if there are no big fireworks like a lot of investors are worried about.

Ankur Rudra, VP Institutional Equities, Ambit Capital is also bullish on Bharti and has a buy rating on the stock with a target of Rs 392. Improvement in margins and data services becoming an important driver of revenue growth are key positives, says Rudra in an interview to CNBC-TV18.

''Margins recovery has been led by India wireless where Indian wireless margins have grown to 34 percent.The other positives are that revenue per minutes (RPMs) have continued to rise especially voice RPMs where sequential improvement is quite good and indicated industry is moving to the healthy structure,'' he added.

The market holds gains supported by capital goods, auto and pharma stocks. The Sensex is up 106.08 points at 20789.59, and the Nifty is up 34.70 points at 6160.95. About 1270 shares have advanced, 639 shares declined, and 176 shares are unchanged.

Maruti, Sun Pharma , BHEL , Hero Motocorp and Cipla are big gainers in the Sensex. Among the laggards are Sesa Sterlite, Tata Steel,  Hindalco , SBI and ITC .

The rupee is up against the US dollar tracking strength in other Asian currencies and euro following the Turkish lira's sharpest jump since 2008. Government bond prices trade firm as some market participants bought on the view that the Reserve Bank of India may not raise policy rates further.

Asian markets rebounded taking cues from the positive close in the US and better sentiment amongst emerging markets after Turkey's central bank announced a rate hike.

10:59am Gammon talks to CNBC-TV18
There is no demand for road investment or road project either from the lender or from the investor side. Aimed perhaps as a push to the sector, the government decided late last night to allow road companies to swap equity, to selloff their equity provided the lenders agree.

But KK Mohanty, MD,  Gammon Infrastructure says these are just procedural simplifications. Before this an environment needs to be created where the road projects remain or become economically viable, he says.

He says if issues related to land acquisitions, collecting toll (what is happening in Maharashtra) and other such administrative hurdles continue to result in project delays, the present negative sentiment about growth projects will become a long term problem.

He does not think anybody is optimistic about the situation - there are no buyers. It can only help in internal reorganization within the group or companies, he adds. As far as banks are concerned, he feels they are already saddled with bad projects, so they may utilize this opportunity to improve their position with a better promoter, or a better structure. But he does not see a real transaction happening at this point in time.

10:49am SBI launches QIP
State-owned lender State Bank of India has launched qualified institutional placement (QIP) today at a price band of Rs 1,565-1,596 a share, reportes CNBC-TV18 quoting sources.

Sources say the total size of the QIP is in range of USD 1.46-1.49 billion and the issue will close at 8 am on Thursday.

Deutsche Bank, Citibank, HSBC, UBS, JPMorgan and SBI Capital are the bankers to QIP.

The stock declined 0.8 percent to Rs 1,584 on the BSE.

10:39am FII View
Mahesh Nandurkar of CLSA said the RBI unexpectedly raised repo rates, but calmed nerves by saying that if CPI were to trend down to 8 percent by January 2015, there might be no rate hikes. He believes that this is possible.

"On a separate note, opinion polls highlight that the prospects of a stable government is now higher. We believe there is a good chance of a market rally into election dates. We continue to favour corporate lenders, autos and L&T to play the growth improvement theme," he added.

10:29am Conclusion of two-day Fed meet to announce today midnight
While the US Federal Reserve will pay heed to macro data before taking a decision on tapering for the next few months, Grace Tam, global market strategist, JPMorgan Asset Management believes it will taper its quantitative analysis (QE) by USD 10 billion.

Speaking to CNBC-TV18, Tam says the market expects a very slow pace of tapering due to which US treasury yields are falling a little.

Meanwhile, Tam downplays the emerging market (EM) currency contagion. He says the fall seen is only restricted to Argentina and Turkey which have high inflation.

''But we still think this is not a really serious problem because those like Turkey, Argentina are very small EMs, they are not going to affect the whole world. It is more likely a fundamental affect,'' adds Tam.

10:19am: The market recouped some of its losses reported in previous three sessions, supported by short covering in most beaten down stocks like private banks, capital goods and auto.

The Sensex added 96.77 points to 20,780.28, and the Nifty climbed 30.50 points to 6,156.75. Advancing shares outnumbered declining ones by a ratio of 1234 to 497 on the BSE.

Country's largest private sector lender ICICI Bank gained 1 percent ahead of its third quarte earnings. The CNBC-TV18 poll of analysts expects net interest income of the bank to grow 20 percent year-on-year to Rs 4,213 crore and profit after tax to rise 10 percnet to Rs 2,476 crore in the quarter gone by.

After falling more than 8 percent in previous session, Maruti Suzuki shares rebounded with 6 percent gains after the chairman RC Bhargava clarified that Gujarat unit expansion will not have any impact on profitability of the company.

Sun Pharma rallied 3 percent followed by BHEL , Tata Motors , Larsen and Toubro , Coal India and Cipla with 1-2 percent upmove.

Bharti Airtel is trading flat as the telecom operator reported mixed set of numbers in the quarter ended December 2013. Profit after tax grew 4.5 percent to Rs 610 crore impacted by exceptional loss of Rs 221.3 crore on tax provision while revenues beat analysts expectations, growing 2.8 percent Q-o-Q to Rs 21,939 crore in the quarter gone by.

However, HDFC , State Bank of India, Tata Steel , Sesa Sterlite and Hindalco Industries declined 0.6-1 percent.

9:50 am Warning: Sahara Group chief Subrata Roy will not be allowed to leave the country with the Supreme Court today refusing to relax its order restraining him from going abroad till his company furnishes details of refunding Rs 20,000 crore of investors money.

A bench of justices K S Radhakrishnan and J S Khehar said that it will allow him to leave the country only when the Sahara group furnishes all the documents to reveal the source of Rs 22,885 crore which it claimed to have refunded to its investors. It said that if the company failed to show the source of the money then it would direct "further probe" against the group and brushed aside an impassioned plea of Roy's counsel who submitted that his client be allowed to go abroad for business purposes and he will return before the next date of hearing.

9:40 am FII view: Mahesh Nandurkar of CLSA believes there is a good chance of a market rally into election dates. He continue to favour corporate lenders, autos and L&T to play the growth improvement theme.

Neelkanth Mishra of Credit Suisse feels the turbulence in currency and stock markets of several emerging markets (EMs) may have stemmed, but is unlikely to be over. "After all, the 'taper' is still very much on, and each of these EMs has political turmoil and many have macroeconomic stresses. In the evolution of these episodes of de-risking, the next phase is usually contagion: markets wake up to inter-linkages and attempt to de-risk from a potential disruption in trade or capital flows," he said.

9:30 am Results: Bharti Airtel reported 4.55 percent growth in third quarter net profit quarter-on-quarter, impacted by exceptional loss on tax provisions. Year-on-year growth in profit was 115 percent.

Net profit increased to Rs 610 crore from Rs 583.4 crore and quarter-on-quarter revenues climbed 2.8 percent (13.3 percent year-on-year), higher-than-expected, to Rs 21,939 crore in the quarter ended December 2013.

The market has opened in green with Nifty clenching 6150. The Nifty is up 34.35 points at 6160.60 while the Sensex is up 102.63 points at 20786.14. About 250 shares have advanced, 45 shares declined, and 81 shares are unchanged.

Maruri Suzuki is star of the day as it is wiping out all its losses (slumped 8 percent on Tuesday) post December quarter results. The stock had suffered a knee-jerk reaction on news that the Gujarat plant will be owned and funded by a Suzuki subsidiary. Maruti chairman RC Bhargava defended the move saying it is a win-win for both Maruti and Suzuki. Most brokerages have taken this news as a positive.

Other gainers are ICICI Bank , Tata Motors , Sesa Sterlite and L&T. IT stocks are dragging a bit with Infosys among the losers in the Sensex.

The rupee opened higher by 18 paise at 62.33 per dollar versus 62.51 Tuesday.The yen extends its pullback early this morning, while higher-risk currencies like Australian dollar rally after turkey stunned markets with a massive interest rate hike in an effort to stem capital flight from its economy.

The dollar and euro also firmed on the Japanese currency as investors quickly unwound recent safe-haven flows.

Ramanathan K, ING Investment Mgmt said, "Expect rupee to appreciate given the global risk-on trade on the back of settlement of China Credit Trust issue as well as the Turkish Central Bank's move to sharply increase overnight lending rates to defend the Turkish Lira."

"Post the surprise in the RBI policy, Rupee is likely to retrace back to its medium term band of 61-63/USD," he added.

Wall Street rebounded on Tuesday with the Dow recovering after its worst five-day drop since 2012 boosted by positive earnings. Europe too ended in the green and Asian markets gain with Japan up more than a percent.

In the currency space, the yen extended its pullback early this morning, while higher-risk currencies like Australian dollar rally after Turkey stunned markets with a massive interest rate hike in an effort to stem capital flight from its economy.

The dollar and euro also firmed on the Japanese currency as investors quickly unwound recent safe-haven flows.

From precious metals space, gold extends losses to a third session today as investors turned jittery ahead of the US Federal Reserve's statement on the outlook for its bond-buying stimulus. A rebound in stock markets after turkey raised its key interest rates, calming fears about emerging markets, also hurt safe-haven gold.