Wipro & TCS gainers, SBI falls 1%; Sensex, Nifty firm

3:20 pm Is RBI policy a non-event for market?
Rashesh Shah, Chairman and CEO, Edelweiss Financial Services says the market was optimistic about a rate cut going ahead, but post the RBI commentary, there is a growing belief that the RBI might not cut rates at all this year. However, he feels that the market will continue to hope for a rate cut perhaps six months down the line. But the RBI has kept a strict vigil on inflation and finds it moving up if vegetable prices rise. The Reserve Bank in its annual credit policy clearly stated that vegetable prices have hit a seasonal trough and hence further softening in prices is unlikely. RBI governor Raghuram Rajan has said: ''There are risks to the central forecast of 8 percent CPI inflation by January 2015 stemming from a less-than-normal monsoon due to possible El Nino effects; uncertainty on the setting of minimum support prices for agricultural commodities and the setting of other administered prices, especially of fuel, fertiliser and electricity; the outlook for fiscal policy; geo-political developments and their impact on international commodity prices.''

03:10 pm liberalisation: The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) will remove pricing restriction on entry and exit of foreign direct investment (FDI). The central bank says that it would like to move to market practices, operating guidelines will be issued soon. The RBI has determined the pricing guidelines on the basis of which foreign direct investors can invest in shares in India and exit as well. So these guidelines determine both the pricing of the entry and exit of foreign direct investors obviously in unlisted companies because in listed companies, there is a market price that is available but a bout of India's investment comes in unlisted companies via joint ventures etc. Till now the operating guidelines till a few years ago was a CCI based pricing guidelines. It then moved to a DCF or discounted cash flow based pricing guidelines since then there has been controversy regarding the issue of Call and Put options and for such options, the exit pricing was supposed to be linked to return on equity.

03:00pm Punjab National Bank sells stake in IIFSL
Punjab National Bank said, "After regulatory approvals, the bank has sold its entire 30 percent stake in India Factoring & Financial Solutions  (IFFSL) to Fll - FIM Bank (Malta) and realised Rs 107.83 crore.

02:55pm State Bank of Mysore in focus
State Bank of Mysore said the board of directors has declared an interim dividend at the rate of Rs 3 per equity share. Interim dividend will be paid on April 22, 2014. The board has also approved in-principle for augmentation of equity capital through rights issue, not exceeding Rs 425 crore including share premium, to its shareholders. The stock fell 2.5 percent following the weakness in Bank Nifty.

02:45pm UPL up 3%
Shares of UPL (formerly known as United Phosphorous) gained 3 percent after the company sold its entire stake in Brazil joint venture. "Overseas subsidiary has entered into an agreement with an Italian company Sipcam SPA, to sell its entire stake of 50 percent in the Brazilian agrochemical company Sipcam UPL Brasil SA," UPL said in its filing. Sipcam is the current 50 percent joint venture partner with UPL in Sipcam UPL Brasil SA. The company further said the gross consideration amount of the transaction was USD 58.5 million (approximately Rs 351 crore) and the entire process was expected to be completed by June 2014.

02:40pm RCF and National Fertilisers gain 2.5%
The Election Commission has given its nod to hike urea fixed price by Rs 350/metric tonne. The fertiliser ministry is likely to notify the price hike by today or tomorrow, reports CNBC-TV18 quoting sources. The fertiliser ministry sought the EC nod as caution since the hike was approved by the Empowered Group of Ministers and the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs much before the model code of conduct came into effect. The last urea price hike was in April 2010. The decision, though positive for fertiliser companies, will raise the total urea subsidy bill of the government by Rs 900 crore in FY15. Special vintage allowance of Rs 150/metric tonne will be given to urea plants that are more than 30 years old.

02:35pm M&M up 2%
Company's two-wheeler sales increased but overall sales declined marginally. Total two-wheeler sales jumped 152 percent year-on-year to 19,591 units and domestic sales rose 165 percent to 18,953 units in March. Total sales of the company climbed 22.5 percent (down 0.5 percent year-on-year) to 51,636 units from 42,166 units in previous month. Tractor sales continued to rise in the month gone by. Total tractor sales increased to 17,673 units in March as against 17,592 units in February and 17,330 units in a year-ago period.

02:30pm Reliance Power capacity reaches to 4000 MW
Reliance Power said its total operational capacity has reached nearly 4000 MW as Butibori Power Plant (2 x 300 MW) is fully operational. The power plant is developed by Vidarbha industries Power, a subsidiary of the company. "Entire output from Butibori Power Plant is being supplied to Reliance Infrastructure, the Mumbai Distribution Licensee under a 25-year long term power purchase agreement," the company said in its filing.

02:20pm Nikkei closes lower
Japan's Nikkei share average fell, retreating from a three-week high, as sentiment was hit by a sombre business confidence survey and as utilities tumbled on a report that Hokkaido Electric Power Co will get a capital infusion from a state-owned lender. The benchmark Nikkei dropped 0.2 percent to 14,791.99 in choppy trade after rising as high as 14,870.51 earlier, the highest since March 13. Japanese business sentiment barely improved in the three months to March and is set to sour in the following quarter, the Bank Of Japan's tankan quarterly survey showed, reflecting uncertainty over how much a sales tax hike that kicked off on Tuesday could hurt a fragile economic recovery, reports Reuters.

02:15pm HSBC on RBI policy
There's almost a sense of relief to hear a status quo, however, fears remain as inflation has come off but still remains sticky on some factors, said Naina Lal Kidwai, Director - HSBC Asia Pacific & Country Head - HSBC India, on the RBI Monetary Policy . She said the industry continues to look at interest rate cut, but that is something to be hoped for in the medium-term.

02:10pm Natco Pharma down 14%
Shares in Natco Pharma fell 13 percent, heading towards their biggest ever single-day fall after the US Supreme Court on Monday agreed to hear an appeal filed by Teva Pharmaceutical Industries in a patent fight over top-selling multiple sclerosis drug Copaxone. The appeal could deter generic manufacturers such as Natco from introducing cheaper versions of Capaxone onto the market as soon as May. The company continues to believe that Teva's patent on Copaxone is "invalid," the company said in a filing to the exchange, reports Reuters.

02:00pm Equity benchmarks continued to consolidate in afternoon trade after the Reserve Bank of India on expected lines decided to keep policy repo rate under the liquidity adjustment facility (LAF) unchanged at 8 percent. The central bank also kept the cash reserve ratio (CRR) of scheduled banks unchanged at 4 percent of net demand and time liability (NDTL). Consequently, the reverse repo rate under the LAF will remain unchanged at 7 percent, and the marginal standing facility (MSF) rate and the bank rate at 9 percent. The Sensex declined 16.84 points to 22369.43 and the Nifty slipped 7.70 points to 6696.50. Advancing shares outnumbered declining ones by a ratio of 1341 to 1171 on the BSE. Interest rate sensitive sectors like banks, capital goods and realty caught in bear grip. The BSE Bank, Capital Goods and Realty indices fell over a percent. India's largest lenders State Bank of India, ICICI Bank and HDFC Bank dropped more than 1.6 percent. Housing finance company HDFC and engineering & construction major L&T slipped 0.8 percent each.

1:50 pm Focus: Shares of UPL (formerly known as United Phosphorous) gained as much as 3.6 percent intraday on Tuesday after the company sold its entire stake in Brazil joint venture. "Overseas subsidiary has entered into an agreement with an Italian company Sipcam SPA, to sell its entire stake of 50 percent in the Brazilian agrochemical company Sipcam UPL Brasil SA," UPL said in its filing. Sipcam is the current 50 percent joint venture partner with UPL in Sipcam UPL Brasil SA.

1:40 pm Market recovers: The Sensex is up 17.27 points at 22403.54, and the Nifty is up 5.00 points  at 6709.20. About 1303 shares have advanced, 1169 shares declined, and 144 shares are unchanged. Wipro gains 3 percent, followed by TCS, Sesa Sterlite, Tata Steel and ONGC. Among the losers are Maruti Suzuki, Hindalco, SBI, HDFC Bank and Bharti Airtel.

1:30 pm Experts views on RBI policy: Samiran Chakraborty of Standard Chartered Bank said RBI has taken a balanced policy stance this time. Chakraborty reiterated that any base-effect led decline in inflation won't trigger a rate-cut. The fall in inflation has to be in excess of what the central bank is suggesting only then rates may be cut. ''Going ahead, core inflation, average inflation rates and momentum of inflation will become important concepts to track if the decline in inflation is sustainable,'' he added. P Pradeep Kumar of State Bank of India feels that RBI is concerned about the impact on El Nino on monsoons and consequent impact of food inflation. Today's policy clearly indicates that if inflation trends downwards, then there is a room for a rate cut, but if the data is not as per expectations, a rate hike may be in offing, he added. Since the current liquidity scenario remains good it is unlikely that banks will be willing to cut deposit rates at this point of time. Any movement in deposit and lending rates is unlikely until the next policy is announced, he said. Ranjan Dhawan, ED, Bank of Baroda agrees with this view.

1:20 pm Big slide: Natco Pharma tanks over 15 percent after US Supreme Court agreed to review a request by Teva which will overturn an earlier court ruling that had shortened its patent protection for Copaxone to May 2014 versus September 2014

The market is in red post the announcement of RBI's first bi-monthly monetary policy review. The Sensex is down 43.09 points at 22343.18, and the Nifty is down 14.50 points at 6689.70. About 1277 shares have advanced, 1173 shares declined, and 148 shares are unchanged. RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan keeps key policy rates unchanged. He says the 'only surprise is lack of surprise' and cautions inflation risks could resurface. However he says he does not expect further near-term policy tightening if headline inflation continues to ease towards the bank's targeted level. Oil marketing companies are in focus as petrol prices were cut by 75 paise per litre, the first reduction in five months, while diesel price hike was put on hold and referred to the election commission.

12:55pm Maruti in focus
Country's largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki India (MSI) reported a 5.5 percent decline in total sales in March at 1,13,350 units as against 1,19,937 units in the same month last year. The company said its domestic sales declined  by 5.2 percent during the month to 1,02,269 units as against 1,07,890 units in March 2013. Sales of mini segment cars, including M800, Alto, A-Star and WagonR, declined by 11 percent to 40,085 units as compared to 45,047 units in the year-ago month, MSI said in a statement. The company said sales of the compact segment comprising Swift, Estilo, Ritz rose by 9.3 percent to 28,285 units in March this year as against 25,868 units last year, reports PTI.

12:50pm HSBC's India manufacturing PMI down in March
HSBC's India manufacturing PMI declined in March at 51.3 versus 52.5 in February, but remained above the waterline, indicating positive growth. "Growth in the manufacturing sector eased on the back of weaker growth in output and a slowdown in order flows from domestic clients. By goods, consumer goods firmed, but the production of investment goods remains subdued according to panellists. Looking ahead, the recovery is likely to prove protracted. Meanwhile, inflation eased in March, with the PMI index for input and output prices falling," the HSBC report said.

12:45pm Expert on RBI policy
Kunal Shah, fund manager-debt, Kotak Mahindra Old Mutual Life Insurance said, "RBI has maintained status quo as per our and consensus expectations, though not clearly spelled out in policy but RBI is incrementally concerned about sticky growth underperformance." According to him, RBI has hinted that lead indicators do not point to any sustained revival in industry or services & hence believes that slower activity will help disinflate the economy which will support the fight against inflation. "Till these processes evolve RBI feels current policy rates are appropriate and may not require further tightening," he added. "We expect current disinflation process to continue and core inflation to moderate further however sharp fall is unlikely in short-term. Monsoon will be key to watch as it can create short-term volatility in inflation path," Shah said.

12:40pm Rate hike unlikely if inflation does not rise further
The Reserve Bank's policy stance will be firmly focussed on keeping the economy on a disinflationary glide path that is intended to hit 8 per cent CPI inflation by January 2015 and 6 per cent by January 2016, the central bank said. It further said that at the current juncture, it is appropriate to hold the policy rate, while allowing the rate increases undertaken during September 2013-January 2014 to work their way through the economy. Furthermore, if inflation continues along the intended glide path, further policy tightening in the near term is not anticipated at this juncture, the RBI said.

12:35pm RBI says
Since December 2013, the sharper than expected disinflation in vegetable prices has enabled a sizable fall in headline inflation. Looking ahead, vegetable prices have entered their seasonal trough and further softening is unlikely. Meanwhile, CPI inflation excluding food and fuel has remained flat. There are risks to the central forecast of 8 percent CPI inflation by January 2015 stemming from a less-than-normal monsoon due to possible el nino effects; uncertainty on the setting of minimum support prices for agricultural commodities and the setting of other administered prices, especially of fuel, fertiliser and electricity; the outlook for fiscal policy; geo-political developments and their impact on international commodity prices.

12:30pm Market falls further, banks extend losses
Equity benchmarks extended losses in afternoon trade weighed down by banking and financial stocks. The Sensex is down 81.76 points to 22304.51 and the Nifty down 20.25 points to 6683.95. India's biggest lender State Bank of India plunged 2 percent while rival HDFC Bank slipped 1.9 percent. Top private sector lender ICICI Bank and housing finance company HDFC dropped over a percent. Shares of L&T, ITC, HUL, Bharti Airtel, Maruti Suzuki, Bajaj Auto, BHEL and Coal India declined over 1 percent. However, TCS held its early gains, up 2 percent followed by Wipro and ONGC with more than 1.5 percent. Infosys and Tata Motors climbed over 0.5 percent.

12:25pm RBI says
Retail inflation measured by the consumer price index (CPI) moderated for the third month in succession in February 2014, driven lower by the sharp disinflation in food prices, although prices of fruits, milk and products have started to firm up. Excluding food and fuel, however, retail inflation remained sticky at around 8 percent. This suggests that some demand pressures are still at play.

12:20pm RBI increases the liquidity provided under 7-day and 14-day term repos from 0.5 percent of net demand and time liability (NDTL) of the banking system to 0.75 percent. It decreases the liquidity provided under overnight repos under the liquidity adjustment facility (LAF) from 0.5 percent of bank-wise NDTL to 0.25 percent with immediate effect.

12:15pm Rajan says the bank may need to push foreign banks to follow subsidiary model. Foreign banks avoid subsidiary route on priority sector norm, he adds.

12:10pm While addressing press conference after an announcement of bi-monthly review, RBI governor Raghuram Rajan said the bank had responded to Election Commission queries on banking licences. "We took Election Commission (EC) opinion on banking licences to stay away from controversy. Bimal Jalan had also suggested getting EC nod for banking licences," Rajan said. He further said the window for differentiated banking licences would be opened soon.

12:05pm Reserve Bank of India kept repo rate, at which banks borrow money from RBI, unchanged at 8 percent and cash reserve ratio at 4 percent. The central bank also left marginal standing facility rate and bank rate unchanged at 9 percent.

12:00pm The market remains volatile after the Reserve Bank of India kept policy rates unchanged that is in-line with expectations. The Sensex slips 15.12 points to 22371.15 and the Nifty declines 4.75 points to 6699.45. About 1174 shares have advanced, 1042 shares declined, and 131 shares are unchanged.   Top lenders State Bank of India, ICICI Bank and HDFC Bank decline 0.5-0.8 percent. Housing finance company HDFC slips 0.66 percent. State-run power equipment maker BHEL drops 1.7 percent, and engineering and construction major L&T is down 1.3 percent.

11:55 am F&O expert: Tushar Mahajan, Head- Listed Futures & Options - India, Nomura Financial Advisory & Sec says that the market is likely to see some profit booking at the current levels. Speaking to CNBC-TV18, Mahajan said the way to position oneself now, is by gearing and trading in either direction. ''On the downside, Nifty may see 6000 and on the upside, 7200 is likely to be seen,'' he explains.  Mahajan advises being overweight on metals and banks and adds that the public sector banks too have started looking attractive now. Furthermore, Mahajan expects Reliance Industries to see a level of Rs 1000 per share as he believes the stock has now broken out of a very strong congestion zone.

11:45 am Market outlook: The current market rally fuelled by expectations of a positive election outcome and formation of a stable government, has some more steam left for the next 10-15 days, Raamdeo Agarwal, Joint MD, Motilal Oswal Financial Services said. However, nervousness would start creeping in if the Nifty hits 7,000 before elections results are out on May 16, he told CNBC-TV18 in an interview. Those looking to build a portfolio now should not miss on adding export-oriented sectors like IT and pharma on dips, he recommended. Both the sectors were laggards in the market rally seen in the last eight weeks. According to him, the pharma sector is reasonably priced and a few midcap companies from the sector will continue to grow at 20-25 percent. Agarwal suggested buying these stocks with a three-five year horizon.

11:35 am In focus: Shares of Educomp Solutions are locked at 10 percent upper circuit at Rs 27.75 as media report suggests that US-based firm is in advanced talks to buy majority shares in the company. "The potential acquirer may invest about USD 300 million (Rs 1,800 crore) through a combination of primary shares and mandatory open offer to emerge as the majority shareholder in Educomp," a media report said quoting unnamed sources. The promoter and promotor group held 44.79 percent stake in company as of December 2013. Meanwhile, in March, Corporate Debt Restructuring Empowered Group approved restructuring of company's debts outstanding that comprised of working capital debt of Rs 399.04 crore and long term debt of Rs 83.05 crore with CDR lenders.

11:25 am Bi-monthly Review Governor Rajan says: Market anticipating stable government and rapid policy actions. RBI can't be in business of bailing out banking system in long-term. Rate set given anticipation of events over next few months. Took EC opinion on bank licences to stay away from controversy. Bimal Jalan had also suggested to get EC nod for bank licences. Window for differentiated bank licences to be opened soon.

11:15 am Bi-monthly Review RBI says: Policy stance to ensure CPI inflation at 8 percent by January 2015. Downside risks to central estimate of FY15 GDP of 5.5 percent. GDP pick-up to 5-6 percent if CPI continues on desired path. Vegetable rates hit seasonal trough, further softening unlikely. Growth risks increase if polls fail to provide stable govt. To issue new bank licences after Election Commission nod. RBI to propose measures to reduce window dressing by bks. Open to bank mergers, provided competition and stability are ensured.

11:10 am Bi-monthly Review: RBI says lead indicators do not point to any sustained revival. Downside risks to growth have increased marginally since Jan. Persistence of high core cpi poses challenge for action. High CPI has a debilitating effect on macro finance stability. No further tightening if inflation continues along glide path. Excluding food & fuel, CPI inflation sticky at 8 percent. Risks to inflation from less than normal monsoon.

The market is volatile as the Reserve Bank of India has kept key rates unchanged in its monetary review. Repo rate is unchanged at 8 percent. RBI keeps Marginal Standing Facility (MSF) and bank rate unchanged at 9 percent. RBI keeps cash reserve ratio (CRR) unchanged at 4%. Liquidity adjustment facility (LAF) borrowing cut to 0.25 percent of net demand and time liability (NDTL). The Sensex is down 31.09 points at 22355.18, and the Nifty is down 7.30 points at 6696.90. About 1048 shares have advanced, 933 shares declined, and 128 shares are unchanged. A CNBC-TV18 poll of bankers and economists expected no change in policy rates this time. Nearly 85 percent of the respondents expected repo rate to remain unchanged at 8 percent and only 15 percent expect a change in rates. TCS, ONGC, Wipro, Dr Reddy's Labs and NTPC are top gainers in the Sensex. Among the losers are Hindalco, ITC, Coal India, BHEL and Maruti Suzuki.

10:55am FII View
"We expect Asia ex-Japan to return 4 percent in Q2 as macro growth accelerates in US and China, and domestic policy and politics act as tailwinds for select markets. Rising US rates remain a key risk, but Asia emerging markets are more resilient now than it was in mid-2013. In South Asia, we like India the most on its recovering growth, undemanding valuations, and improving sentiment ahead of the parliamentary elections," Timothy Moe, Goldman Sachs said.

10:45am UPL spikes 3%
UPL (formerly known as United Phosphorous) said that its overseas subsidiary has entered into an agreement with an Italian company Sipcam SPA, to sell its entire stake of 50 percent in the Brazilian agrochemical company Sipcam UPL Brasil SA. Sipcam is the current 50 percent joint venture partner with UPL in Sipcam UPL Brasil SA. "The gross consideration amount of the transaction is USD 58.5 million (approximately Rs 351 crore). The money will be available for new opportunities and meet growing business requirements. It also help UPL to have more focussed approach for Brazilian agrochemical market," the company said in its filing.

10:35am RBI Policy
The RBI is likely to maintain status quo in monetary policy, but with a keen eye on the data coming from weather agencies about the monsoon, which some say, could be below normal. That's the word coming in from Aditi Nayar, senior economist at ICRA. ''In a situation where the monsoon is not expected to be normal, one needs to be wary but today, I don't think a monetary action is warranted,'' said Nayar. Moreover, she expects the headline March CPI number to be flattish or come in slightly higher at around 8.2 percent.

10:30am Educom Solutions up 10%
Shares of Educomp Solutions are locked at 10 percent upper circuit at Rs 27.75 on Tuesday as media report suggests that US-based firm is in advanced talks to buy majority shares in the company. "The potential acquirer may invest about USD 300 million (Rs 1,800 crore) through a combination of primary shares and mandatory open offer to emerge as the majority shareholder in Educomp," a media report said quoting unnamed sources. The promoter and promotor group held 44.79 percent stake in company as of December 2013.

10:20am KEC International surges 4%
Tata Housing has bought seven acres of land in Mumbai for Rs 214 crore from KEC International for development of a premium housing project. Tata Housing signed an agreement with KEC International on Saturday to buy 7.3 acres of land parcel in Thane, according to sources. Tata Housing, a real estate arm of Tata group, will build premium homes on the land and expects Rs 1,300 crore revenue from the project, they added, reports PTI.

10:10am Losers
Aluminium major Hindalco Industries fell 3 percent and state-run power equipment maker BHEL plunged 2 percent. Shares of ITC, HDFC, Larsen & Toubro, HUL, Bharti Airtel, Tata Steel and Coal India slipped 1 percent.

10:00am Equity benchmarks are volatile as investors are cautious ahead of RBI policy today. Technology and oil & gas stocks see buying interest while metals, FMCG, capital goods and banks stocks are under pressure. The Sensex gains 13.06 points to 22399.33 while the Nifty falls 1.60 points to 6702.60. About 942 shares have advanced, 659 shares declined, and 72 shares are unchanged. Commercial vehicle maker Tata Motors advanced over 1 percent ahead of March auto sales numbers. Index heavyweight Reliance Industries climbed 1 percent. The government said Reliance Industries would continue to supply gas to fertiliser companies. State-run oil & gas explorer ONGC rose 1.9 percenet. Technology stocks like Wipro and TCS rallied 1.8 percent each while rival Infosys soared 0.7 percent. Deven Choksey, MD, KR Choksey Securities said, the month of April is a relatively shorter month and less number of trading days and so, one might see the periodical events of profit booking continuing. ''Maybe some important events like the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) policy might see some amount of profit booking in the course of this week. But if market comes down between 6,500 and 6,550, one might see support buying ahead of election, long position would certainly take place and so, that would be a good opportunity to buy into some good quality stocks,'' he added.

10:00 am FII view: Timothy Moe, Goldman Sachs expects Asia ex-Japan to return 4 percent in Q2 as macro growth accelerates in US and China, and domestic policy and politics act as tailwinds for select markets. "Rising US rates remain a key risk, but Asia emerging markets are more resilient now than it was in mid-2013. In South Asia, we like India the most on its recovering growth, undemanding valuations, and improving sentiment ahead of the parliamentary elections," he said. Bharat Iyer, JP Morgan feels that the underlying bull-drive seems to be getting stronger in Indian equity investors. "Upward bias in cyclical sectors is now on for the last six weeks. Investor preference seems to be shifting to stocks with relatively higher risk perception. Emerging markets received FII flows last week. India led with net inflows of USD 1.2 billion into equities," he added.

9:50 am Outlook: Developing Asia is poised to sustain its current growth momentum and is well positioned to manage risks coming from a slightly slower Chinese economy and possible uneven demand from major industrialised nations, the Asian Development Bank said. India is forecast to accelerate to 5.5 percent this year, much faster than the 4.7 percent forecast in December, although the South Asian nation was still operating below potential which can be solved by clearing investment bottlenecks, the bank said. Asian nations can undertake preemptive measures to protect the region's growing economy from unpredictable capital inflows, said the Manila-based lender as it unveiled its forecasts for the region for 2014 and 2015.

9:40 am In focus: Shares of Reliance Industries touched 52-week high at Rs 940 per piece. It has finally agreed to temporarily supply gas to fertiliser plants at current prices, although the two sides have failed to sign new deals, the top official in the Fertiliser Ministry said. Energy group Reliance Industries' five-year gas supply agreements with sectors including fertiliser makers and power producers expire at midnight, requiring buyers to sign new contracts for supplies from its D6 block in the Krishna Godavari basin. "Reliance will continue to supply gas at $4.20 (per million British thermal units). The Fertiliser Association of India (FAI) and Reliance will sit together and finalise the (next contracts) agreements as early as possible," Fertiliser Secretary Shaktikanta Das said. Das did not elaborate on the duration or other terms of potential new contracts between RIL and the fertiliser companies.

9:30 am RBI poll: A CNBC-TV18 poll of bankers and economists show no change in policy rates this time. Nearly 85 percent of the respondents expect repo rate to remain unchanged at 8 percent and only 15 percent expect a change in rates. In its annual policy review, the market expects Rajan to give projections on growth and inflation. On growth, 70 percent of the market expects Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to keep FY15 gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate at 5-5.6 percent. Only 30 percent expect year end growth at 5.6-6 percent.

The market has opened slightly higher as the Sensex is up 65.60 points at 22451.87, and the Nifty up 25.30 points at 6729.50. About 319 shares have advanced, 82 shares declined, and 18 shares are unchanged. Tata Motors, TCS, Wipro, NTPC and Dr Reddy's Labs are major gainers. Among the losers are Hindalco, HDFC, SBI, Coal India and ITC. In Asia, shares were mixed in subdued trade on Tuesday as investors digested two key gauges of Chinese manufacturing activity. Beijing's official purchasing managers' index rose to 50.3 in March from 50.2 in February, in line with analyst expectations. Still, the figure was below January's 50.5 figure. Separately, HSBC's final reading came in at 48, a touch below last week's preliminary reading of 48.1. Globally, in the US, stocks wrapped up the session on a high note, with the Dow logging triple-digit gains, after Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen said there's still room for the central bank to help the economy. But major index ended relatively flat for the first quarter of 2014. Dow Jones ended the day at 16457.66, up 134.60 points, while the Nasdaq closed at 4198.99, up 43.23 points. While in the Europe, stocks closed mixed slightly boosted by hopes that stimulus measures will be announced by the European Central Bank (ECB) later this week along with the boost it received from Yellen's comments. In the currency space, dollar index stood at 80.100, having retreated from a near two-week high of 80.296. Japanese yen stayed on the backfoot, while the dollar dipped slightly after the head of the Federal Reserve took pains to defend the central bank's ultra-loose policy settings. In commodities, crude prices remained soft on a potential easing of tensions over Ukraine. Nymex hovered around USD 101 while Brent held above USD 107. From precious metals space - gold was languishing near a seven-week low after posting its first monthly drop of the year as investors pulled money out of bullion backed exchange-traded funds in favour of riskier assets.