Sensex flat, Nifty ends above 8750 ahead of Fed meet; ITC down

3:30 pm Market closing: The market has ended flat ahead of Fed meeting. The Sensex is down 15.78 points at 28507.42 and the Nifty is up 1.25 points at 8777.15. About 1400 shares have advanced, 1323 shares declined, and 194 shares are unchanged.

ITC, SBI, ICICI Bank, BHEL and GAIL were losers while Tata Steel, HUL, Axis Bank, Bharti Airtel and Infosys were gainers in the Sensex.

3:00 pm Market Update: The Sensex fell 24.62 points to 28498.58 and the Nifty declined 3.15 points to 8772.75. About 1389 shares advanced against 1280 declining shares on the BSE.

2:50 pm Joint Venture: The proposed USD 1 billion JV between global steel giant ArcelorMittal and India's largest producer of the metal SAIL will be finalised by December, Steel Minister Chaudhary Birendra Singh said today.

"I have told them (SAIL and ArcelorMittal) that JV formalities should be completed by December. It should be decided by December this year," Singh told reporters here on the sidelines of an event by Indian Chambers of Commerce.

Singh met ArcelorMittal Chairman Lakshmi Mittal in London last month and discussed the JV, which aims at setting up an automotive steel plant in India.

2:45 pm Europe higher: European stocks rallied after the Bank of Japan announced new monetary policy measures and as investors awaited the outcome of the US Federal Reserve's meeting.

The pan-European STOXX 600 was up 1 percent.

2:30 pm IPO: ICICI Prudential Life Insurance's IPO, the first by an insurer in India, has been oversubscribed 4.34 times till afternoon trade on the last day of the offer today.

At full subscription, the quota set aside for qualified institutional buyers (QIBs) was oversubscribed 6.88 times, while for non- institutional investors category it was 9.54 times. Retail portion has been oversubscribed 1.1 times.

The price band is at Rs 300-334 per share.

Ahead of the IPO, ICICI Prudential allocated over 4.89 crore shares at Rs 334, the top-end of the price band, aggregating Rs 1,635.33 crore to a clutch of anchor investors.

2:20 pm Monsoon impact: Rural demand is likely to turn up in the coming months largely driven by better rains, and Kharif farm income is expected to jump 12.3 percent this year, says a report.

According to global financial services major Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BofA-ML), the revival in rural income growth along with the payment of 7th Pay Commission arrears this month implies a consumption driven recovery for the country rather than an investment driven one.

The global brokerage expects rural demand to start picking up from October as the fresh harvest starts coming in.

2:00 pm Market Check: Benchmark BSE Sensex erased all its gains amid consolidation in afternoon trade as investors remained cautious ahead of the outcome of Federal Reserve meeting due later today and after the Bank of Japan's action.

The Sensex fell 42.23 points to 28480.97 and the Nifty slipped 13 points to 8762.90 while the market breadth remained positive as about 1429 shares advanced against 1192 declining shares on the BSE.

ICICI Bank, ITC, SBI, HDFC and ONGC were top contributors to the Sensex's loss while HDFC Bank and Infosys capped the losses.

1:50 pm IPO update: ICICI Prudential Life Insurance's IPO, the first by an insurer in India, has been oversubscribed nearly 2 times till afternoon trade on the last day of the offer today.

The IPO received bids for 22,59,61,208 shares as against the total issue size of 13,23,78,973 shares, reflecting a subscription of 1.71 times, data available with the NSE till 1345 hrs showed.

At full subscription, the quota set aside for qualified institutional buyers (QIBs) was oversubscribed 1.88 times, while for non- institutional investors category it was 37 percent, sources said. Retail portion has been oversubscribed 1.02 times.

1:30 pm Interview: Rajiv Bajaj, MD of Bajaj Auto said industry didn't have a good run last year during Onam. Sales remained flat during the Onam period. ''This time, sales were up 10 percent which is good,'' he said, adding that he is seeing positive growth in the double-digit space. The manner in which the industry is building on dealerships is anticipation of far higher growth, he said. The bigger picture for the company is exports. On the exports front, I have a better picture, not a nice one, he said, adding that from October last year, exports took a downturn. In the first half of last year, the two-wheeler company did 1 million vehicle sales. In that sense from October the base effect will catch on, and exports will look like it will be good, he said.

The market is still in the positive territory with the Nifty holding 8800. The 50-share index is up 29.55 points or 0.3 percent at 8805.45. The Sensex is up 85.82 points or 0.3 percent at 28609.02. About 1579 shares have advanced, 961 shares declined, and 190 shares are unchanged.

Bajaj Auto, Tata Motors, GAIL, Hero MotoCorp and Axis Bank are top gainers while ICICI Bank, SBI, Maruti, TCS and Dr Reddy's Labs are losers.
 
Addressing media, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said that there will be only one Budget- the general Budget and all proposals on the railways will be included in it. He also said that defence and roads will have higher budget than Rails.

European stocks opened higher after the Bank of Japan announced new monetary policy measures and as investors awaited the outcome of the US Federal Reserve's meeting.

The Bank of Japan announced that it was abandoning its target to increase the monetary base, launching yield curve controls and scrapping its bond buying range - but it left rates unchanged.

The US Federal Reserve will become the focus for market attention although no fireworks are expected from the central bank this month. Market odds of a rate hike for the September meeting were just about 20 percent Tuesday, and close to 60 percent for December.

12:40 pm Europe opens: European stocks opened higher after the Bank of Japan announced new monetary policy measures and as investors awaited the outcome of the US Federal Reserve's meeting.

The pan-European STOXX 600 was up 0.91 percent.

12:35 pm Union & Rail Budget merged: Finally the Cabinet has approved merger of Rail Budget with the Union Budget.

It also approved advance Budget date and the date for Union Budget will be announced later.

The government has finalised to remove plan and non-plan expenditure from the Budget.

12:25 pm Crude Update: Oil prices climbed, supported by a reported draw in US crude inventories and by firm import data from Japan.

US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were up 2 percent at USD 44.93 a barrel. Traders said that the main WTI price driver had been American Petroleum Institute data showing a 7.5 million barrel draw to 507.2 million barrels in US crude inventories, the third weekly stock draw. Market participants had expected an increase of 3.4 million barrels, according to a Reuters poll.

International benchmark Brent crude oil futures were trading at USD 46.51 per barrel, up 1.37 percent, from their last close.

12:00 pm Market Check
Benchmark indices as well as broader markets were higher by half a percent in noon trade following rally in Asian peers after the Bank of Japan announced monetary policy. After BOJ, the outcome of Federal Reserve meeting, due later today, will be closely watched.

The 30-share BSE Sensex was up 144.93 points at 28668.13 and the 50-share NSE Nifty gained 45.50 points at 8821.40. The market breadth remained positive as about 1561 shares advanced against 801 declining shares on the BSE.

Hindalco Industries topped the buying list on Nifty, up nearly 3 percent on a media report that the company is planning to reduce debt by selling non-core assets.

Bajaj Auto advanced 2 percent after Rajiv Bajaj, MD of the company, in an interview to CNBC-TV18, said four significant launches lined up in October & November. "We will launch a new brand in nov to challenge Royal Enfield in middle weight motorcycle market."

Bharti Infratel, Eicher Motors, Yes Bank, Tata Motors, Tata Steel, Hero Motocorp and NTPC were other gainers.

Japanese shares rose nearly 2 percent after the Bank of Japan (BOJ) announced it would modify its monetary policy framework. The BOJ kept rates at -0.1 percent and abandoned its monetary base target, but said it would maintain its program of buying long-term Japanese government bonds at a pace so that the balance of its holdings increases by 80 trillion yen (USD 781 billion).

11:30 am  Market outlook: The global investors has taken the view that world is awash with liquidity and anything contrary to this notion will be a spoiler, believes Saurabh Mukherjea, CEO - Institutional Equities at Ambit Capital.

''There is no economic pick-up as such in the domestic market,'' says Mukherjea adding that no up-move is expected in the next six months. Ambit continues to stick with its Sensex target of 29,500 by year-end.

However, Mukherjea says three structural changes are happening in the economy. One is the decline in public banks and the rise of small private banks and NBFCs, second is decline in railways, which will benefit the road sector and lastly, the trackdown of black money in the economy.

The market is gaining gradually with the Nifty inching close to 8850. The 50-share index is up 45.50 points or 0.5 percent at 8821.40 and the Sensex is up 146.52 points or 0.5 percent at 28669.72. About 1547 shares have advanced, 639 shares declined, and 139 shares are unchanged.

Bajaj Auto, Tata Motors, Tata Steel, Adani Ports and Axis Bank are top gainers while ICICI Bank, TCS, Coal India and Cipla are major losers in the Sensex.

Japan's central bank kept rates steady at its meeting but issued a plethora of fresh changes to its policy approach, indicating its comprehensive review of its negative interest rate policy and asset purchases was fruitful.

Among the changes, the Bank of Japan (BOJ) said it would make yield curve control a centerpiece of its new policy framework, by a seven-to-two vote, Reuters reported. It said it would buy 10-year JGBs so that the yield would hover around zero percent, Reuters reported.

Now all eyes are on the Federal Reserve meeting. The US Federal Reserve is expected to keep interest rates unchanged on Wednesday amid tepid inflation and recent weak economic data, but could signal an increased likelihood of a hike by the end of the year.

The US central bank raised its benchmark overnight interest rate to a range of 0.25 percent to 0.50 percent in December, the first hike in nearly a decade, but has held rates steady this year.

10:55 am Market Update: Benchmark indices extended rally with the Sensex rising 146.59 points to 28669.79 and the Nifty up 44.30 points at 8820.20.

About 1503 shares advanced against 647 declining shares on the BSE.

10:45 am CARE on spectrum: Even as telecom companies have deposited Rs 14,653 crore for the upcoming spectrum auctions, Care Ratings said it expects a muted response from operators at the sale as they will look at alternatives like sharing of airwaves.

"The auctions may be a bit muted this time as the operators may look at other options, including spectrum- sharing deals, in a more focused manner," the domestic rating agency said in a note.

Seven telcos have deposited Rs 14,653 crore in earnest money for the auctions likely next month.

10:25 am Market Outlook: The global investors has taken the view that world is awash with liquidity and anything contrary to this notion will be a spoiler, believes Saurabh Mukherjea, CEO - Institutional Equities at Ambit Capital.

''There is no economic pick-up as such in the domestic market,'' says Mukherjea adding that no up-move is expected in the next six months. Ambit continues to stick with its Sensex target of 29,500 by year-end.

However, Mukherjea says three structural changes are happening in the economy. One is the decline in public banks and the rise of small private banks and NBFCs, second is decline in railways, which will benefit the road sector and lastly, the trackdown of black money in the economy.

10:00 am Market Check
Equity benchmarks were marginally higher in morning trade with the Nifty reclaiming 8800 level ahead of outcome of Federal Reserve's two-day policy meeting later today.

The 30-share BSE benchmark Sensex was up 64.01 points at 28587.21 and the 50-share NSE Nifty gained 23.10 points at 8799 while the broader markets outperformed benchmarks.

The BSE Midcap index rose 0.4 percent and Smallcap was up 0.7 percent on positive breadth. About 1427 shares advanced against 592 declining shares on the BSE.

Japanese shares rose after the Bank of Japan (BOJ) announced it would modify its monetary policy framework.

The BOJ kept rates at -0.1 percent, and said it would abandon its monetary base target, but would maintain its program of buying long-term Japanese government bonds at a pace so that the balance of its holdings increases by 80 trillion yen (USD 781 billion).

9:50 am Bank of Japan's monetary policy: Japan's central bank issued a plethora of fresh changes to its policy approach after its meeting on Wednesday, but kept rates steady, indicating its comprehensive review of its negative interest rate policy and asset purchases was fruitful.

Among the changes, the Bank of Japan (BOJ) said it would make yield curve control a centerpiece of its new policy framework, by a seven-to-two vote, Reuters reported. It eliminated the maturity range for its Japan government bond purchases and it abandoned its target to increase the monetary base by 80 trillion yen a year, according to Reuters.
It said it would buy 10-year JGBs so that the yield would hover around zero percent, Reuters reported.

It kept its deposit rate unchanged at negative 0.1 percent, Reuters reported.

9:40 am Breaking: Bank of Japan offers to supply 800 billion yen funds at a fixed rate

9:30 am FII ciew: Ajay Kapur of Bank of America Merrill Lynch says the brokerage house has re-iterated tactically neutral view established last month and remained structurally bullish.

"There are many central bank meetings and we will wait to see lower levels of 'Risk-Love' before we get tactically bullish again," he says.

He feels after over-predicting US/global bond yields for the past 15 years, consensus is finally capitulating to a lower interest rate world.

"We were concerned that the then consensus bond-bullishness could reverse if we see coordinated fiscal policy or hawkish central banks. In that scenario, bond proxies, high dividend stocks, utilities, staples and EM debt would come under pressure. That seems to be happening recently," Kapur says.

The market has made a tepid opening waiting for outcome of the Bank of Japan policy meeting. The BOJ is expected to make negative interest rates the centrepiece of a new policy framework - widely seen as a desperate attempt to show it still has the firepower to lift Japan out of years of stagnation.

The Sensex is up 37.43 points or 0.1 percent at 28560.63, and the Nifty is up 13.30 points or 0.1 percent at 8789.20. About 354 shares have advanced, 124 shares declined, and 35 shares are unchanged.

Adani Ports, GAIL, BHEL, Hero MotoCorp, tata Motors are top gainers in the Sensex while HDFC, TCS, Coal India, ITC and ONGC is loser in the Sensex.

The Indian rupee opened marginally higher at 66.99 per dollar versus 67.01 Tuesday.

Pramit Brahmbhatt of Veracity said, "The rupee will trade with a negative bias today due to global concerns, but it can find some support at 67.20/dollar. The trading range for the day is seen between 66.80-67.20/dollar."

Asian shares got off to a tentative start, while the yen was steady as investors braced for the outcome of the Bank of Japan's policy meeting amid heightened speculation the central bank will make crucial changes to its massive easing programme.

Ahead of the decision, MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan added 0.15 percent, perched at its highest levels since September 12. Markets in New Zealand and Australia were flat.

Markets are also watching out for the US Federal Reserve policy decision, due later in the global day. Both hawkish and dovish comments from Fed officials recently have stoked volatility in financial markets, although consensus is now centred on a US rate hike by year-end.

US stocks ended little changed, with healthcare gains offsetting declines in energy

The Dow Jones industrial average added 0.05 percent, the S&P 500 gained 0.03 percent, and the Nasdaq Composite rose 0.12 percent. US Treasury yields were supported in early trade as investors bought longer-dated bonds on uncertainty over the outcome of the BOJ meeting.

Among asset classes, crude oil prices recovered from six-week lows, with US crude rising as much as 1 percent, as the market weighed up OPEC comments that a possible production freeze agreement could last longer than expected.

Gold rose for a second straight session as the dollar dropped ahead of a two-day US Federal Reserve meeting that investors are betting will leave interest rates unchanged.