Sensex ends 300 points higher, Nifty above 10,250; OMCs gain

3:30 pm Market at Close: Benchmark indices ended the week on a very strong note, with the Sensex gaining 300 points, while the Nifty ended above 10,250-mark.

The Sensex was up 301.09 points at 33250.30, while the Nifty was up 99.00 points at 10265.70. The market breadth was positive as 1,561 shares advanced against a decline of 1,128 shares, while 155 shares were unchanged.

ITC, ONGC, and HPCL were the top gainers on both indices, while Reliance, Hero MotoCorp, and GAIL were the top losers.

3:25 pm Buzzing: Sonata Software shares rallied more than 5 percent intraday after the subsidiary acquired stake in Danish company.

"Sonata Europe, a wholly owned subsidiary, has entered into an agreement to acquire 15 percent stake in Izara ApS, a Danish company," the company said in its filing.

Sonata acquired this IT services company to grow the presence in Nordic region.

"The investment is of 15 percent of total expanded share capital DKK 6,09,646 (USD 96,000)," the company said.

3:16 pm Gujarat Elections: Gujarat goes to the polls tomorrow for the first phase of the assembly election being held in 89 seats of Saurashtra and South Gujarat regions with 977 candidates in the fray.

The second phase of the high-stakes election -- with the BJP making a bid for a fifth term and the Congress attempting an electoral revival -- will be held on December 14.

After a campaign that often turned vituperative, around 2.12 crore voters are expected to exercise their franchise in Modi's home state tomorrow to choose between the ruling BJP and the Congress.

Prominent candidates in the fray for Saturday's battle include Chief Minister Vijay Rupani, who is contesting from Rajkot (West), and Congress' Shaktisinh Gohil (Mandvi) and Paresh Dhanani (Amreli). The high voltage campaign for the first phase ended last evening.

3:11 pm Manappuram Finance gained 2 percent as promoter VP Nandakumar has bought additional 4.9 lakh shares in company.

3:08 pm Buzzing: Jayshree Tea share price gained more than 3 percent as operating profit in Q2 grew by 8 percent to Rs 35.4 crore and margin expanded by 100 basis points to 22.3 percent compared with year-ago.

Net profit during the quarter fell 7.2 percent to Rs 25.6 crore  while revenue increased 3 percent to Rs 158.4 crore YoY.

3:04 pm Earnings: Ajmera Realty fell nearly 5 percent after the company disappointed Street with margin performance.

Consolidated profit increased 40 percent year-on-year to Rs 14.5 crore and revenue grew by 20.7 percent to Rs 76 crore in quarter ended September 2017.

Operating profit during the quarter jumped 12.6 percent to Rs 26.6 crore but margin contracted 250 basis points to 35 percent YoY.

3:00 pm Upcoming IPO: Auto component manufacturer Sandhar Technologies has filed draft papers with capital markets regulator Sebi to raise Rs 300 crore through an initial public offer.

The IPO comprises a fresh issue of equity shares worth Rs 300 crore and an offer for sale of 80 lakh scrips by GTI Capital Beta Pvt Ltd, according to the draft red herring prospectus (DRHP) filed with Sebi.

The company intends to use a portion of the net proceeds to prepay/repay certain loan facilities and for general corporate purposes.

"Our company intends to utilise an amount of up to Rs 225 crore from the net proceeds towards the same," the draft papers said.

2:55 pm Global Auto Sales: Tata Motors today reported 22 percent increase in its total global sales at 1,12,473 units for November.

Global wholesales of all Tata Motors' commercial vehicles and Tata Daewoo range in November 2017 were at 40,845 units, an increase of 51 percent over the same month last year, the company said in a statement.

In the passenger vehicles segment, total sales grew by 10 percent at 71,628 units last month.

The company said its British arm, Jaguar Land Rover clocked total global sales of 54,244 units, out of which 12,287 units were that of Jaguar and 41,957 units were of Land Rover.

2:50 pm Fundraising: Non-banking finance firm Capital First today said its debenture committee has approved a proposal to raise up to Rs 400 crore through issuance of non-convertible debentures (NCDs) on private placement basis.

"The debenture committee...has inter-alia approved an issue of rated, listed, secured, redeemable, non-convertible debentures of Rs 100 crore plus green shoe option of Rs 300 crore on private placement basis," Warburg Pincus-backed Capital First said in a BSE filing.

The NCDs will mature on December 8, 2022 and carry coupon rate of 8.25 percent per annum.

2:46 pm Bond Sale: The largest private sector lender ICICI Bank has sold a benchmark bond issue at a coupon of 3.833 percent to overseas investors.

The USD 500-million ten-year dollar money was issued through the Dubai branch of ICICI Bank, an official at Citigroup India, which was the sole advisor to the deal, told PTI today.

The bank has initially given a price guidance of 170 bps over the US treasury for the 144 A RegS issue, which is part of the bank's medium-term notes programme.

Due to high demand, the pricing came down by 20 bps to 150 bps over the US treasury offering a yield of 3.833 per cent to the investor, the i-banker said.

2:35 pm Europe Update: European markets were higher, as investors reacted to progress in Brexit negotiations and a long-sought deal regarding global banking regulations.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 was up 0.82 percent during early morning deals, with almost all sectors and major bourses in positive territory.

2:29 pm Buzzing: Tata Motors gained nearly 3 percent as brokerage houses remained bullish on the stock after double digit growths posted by Jaguar Land Rover in November sales.

The growth in sales was after disappointment in previous five consecutive months.

Credit Suisse has maintained its outperform call on the stock with a target price at Rs 560 per share, citing JLR's double digits volume growth.

The research house feels the volume growth may pick up further with E-Pace launch.

"JLR will have a strong March quarter once all products are launched," Credit Suisse said.

While maintaining a buy call on the stock with a target price of Rs 535 per share, Kotak Securities said the UK's largest automotive manufacturer has to report 8 percent YoY growth in December-March to meet FY18 estimates.

2:15 pm Market Check: Equity benchmarks extended rally in afternoon, with the Sensex rising 308.35 points or 0.94 percent to 33,257.56.

The Nifty gained 98 points or 0.96 percent at 10,264.70 while the Nifty Bank surged 270 points.

The market breadth remained strong but the gap between advances and declines narrowed a bit. About 1,591 shares advanced against 915 declining shares against 4:1 in morning.

2:06 pm FII View: Saion Mukherjee of Nomura said the research house is bullish on India Equities with Nifty December 2018 target of 11,880.

"Business is on the cusp of an upcycle which will drive strong earnings growth as corporate earnings-to-GDP ratio is at its lows, with significant contraction in margins and return on equity," he reasoned.

This is also supported by stable macro fundamentals and clean-up in the system in terms of stressed assets and unprofitable players, he said.

1:55 pm Buzzing: Global brokerage house HSBC has initiated coverage with a Buy rating on Escorts, the farm equipment maker as brand and profit growth are back on track. The stock price rallied as much as 3.5 percent.

The research firm has set a target price for the stock at Rs 835 per share, implying a potential upside of 26 percent from Thursday's closing price as it feels new products will boost market share, margins, and profits of the company.

HSBC expects tractor volumes/revenue/EBIT/net profit to grow at a CAGR of 10/13/33/45 percent over FY17-20.

Cost cutting, improved product mix and increased capacity utilization will drive profits and construction equipment will break even in FY18, it said.

1:42 pm ITC Infotech, a subsidiary of ITC, is looking for buy-outs in the automation space to become a futuristic software firm.

The company has set a budget ranging from USD 25 million to USD 50 million for this purpose, Sushma Rajagopalan, MD and CEO of ITC Infotech, said.

"We are looking at companies dealing in artificial intelligence, machine learning, cyber security, Internet of Things, and robotics," she explained.

1:38 pm Market Check: Strong moves continued on D-Street through the afternoon, with Sensex gaining over 200 points, while the Nifty comfortably traded above 10,200.

Midcaps are marginally outperforming benchmarks, while Nifty pharma is the top gainer among sectoral indices. Among stocks, Unitech surges over 19% after the corporate affairs ministry has moved the National Company Law Tribunal seeking court permission to take over the company. The NCLT has issued a notice against the company and has restrained Unitech's current directors from acting as board directors.

1:30 pm Unitech in focus: The Ministry of Corporate Affairs has moved the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) seeking replacement of existing board members of Unitech with its nominees, CNBC-TV18 reports quoting sources.

The ministry seeks management control on the grounds of mismanagement and alleged fund diversions by the company. It has moved the National Companies Law Tribunal (NCLT's) on the matter and the plea is to be heard on Friday.

The MCA has also sought control of the company's fund division. The CBI can be brought in for a deeper probe if NCLT accepts the MCA plea Consequently, all bank accounts of the company may be frozen.

As Unitech is a listed company, MCA will also get the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) nod to start the bidding process.

1:10 pm Aadhaar deadline: The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has extended the date to link Aadhaar to Permanent Account Number (PAN) to March 31, 2018 from the previous deadline of December 31, 2017.

"In view of the difficulties faced by some of the taxpayers in the process, the date for linking of Aadhaar with PAN was initially extended till 31st August, 2017 which was further extended up to 31st December, 2017," Finance Ministry said in a release.

The government has made it mandatory to link bank account and PAN with Aadhaar to weed out black money.

12:50 pm Buzzing: Future Consumer share price rallied as much as 15 percent after leading global brokerage house Morgan Stanley has initiated coverage with an overweight rating on the stock.

The research house has set a target price for the stock at Rs 95 per share, implying a potential upside of 61 percent as it expects Future Consumer to be India's fifth-largest FMCG company by FY21.

"Future Group's retail ecosystem yields a unique competitive advantage. Future Consumer can launch innovative products with a disruptive go-to-market strategy," Morgan Stanley said.

The brokerage house expects Future Retail to contribute over 90 percent of FY20 revenues against 74 percent in FY17.

Revenues are expected to jump 3.2 times over FY17-20 and margin by 470 bps by FY20, it said.

12:30 pm PSU Banks under pressure: Nifty PSU Bank was only loser among sectoral indices, falling 0.7 percent.

Union Bank of India, SBI, Bank of India, Syndicate Bank, PNB, Andhra Bank and Canara Bank fell 0.2-1 percent.

12:20 pm IPO Subscription: The Rs 650-crore initial public offer of Future Supply Chain Solutions has been oversubscribed 1.3 times, as per data available on the NSE website.

The issue has received bids for 89.30 lakh equity shares against IPO size of 68.49 lakh shares, excluding anchor investors' portion.

12:08 pm Economic Growth: The Indian economy is expected to witness cyclical growth recovery, with real GDP growth likely to accelerate from 6.4 percent this year to 7.5 percent in 2018 and further to 7.7 percent in 2019, says a report.

According to global financial services major Morgan Stanley, corporate return expectations and balance sheet fundamentals are improving, and a strengthening financial system should be able to meet investment credit demand.

"This sets the stage for a fully fledged recovery in 2018, and we expect real GDP growth to accelerate from 6.4 percent in 2017 to 7.5 per cent in 2018 and further to 7.7 percent in 2019," Morgan Stanley said in a research note.

The global brokerage is confident about prospects for a recovery in private capital spending as demand conditions are improving post demonetisation and GST implementation.

Besides, both consumption and exports are picking up and this in turn should lead to an improvement in corporate revenues.

12:01 pm Market Check: The rally continued at Dalal Street in noon as the Sensex surged nearly 300 points intraday, driven by broadbased buying except PSU banks.

Nifty Bank index gained more than 200 points while Auto, FMCG, Metal, Pharma and Private Bank indices were up 1-2 percent. PSU Bank fell 0.7 percent.

The 30-share BSE Sensex rose 265.07 points to 33,214.28 and the 50-share NSE Nifty gained 84 points at 10,250.70.

About 1,595 shares advanced against 795 declining shares on the BSE.

11:38 am Acquisition: Reliance Industries has acquired stake in a newly incorporated entity viz Dreketi SA in Uruguay.

Consequentially Dreketi has become wholly-owned subsidiary of the company.

Currently, Dreketi is not engaged in any business activity.

This is a part of company's plan to strengthen its marketing efforts in Latin American region, Reliance Industries said.

Disclosure: Reliance Industries Ltd. is the sole beneficiary of Independent Media Trust which controls Network18 Media & Investments Ltd.

11:22 am Drug Approval: Zydus Pharmaceuticals USA Inc, a wholly owned subsidiary of Cadila Healthcare, has received the final approval from the US Food and Drug Administration to market Clozapine tablets in strengths of 25 mg, 50 mg, 100 mg and 200 mg.

The drug is used to treat schizophrenia.

It will be manufactured at group's formulations manufacturing facility at SEZ, Ahmedabad.

The group now has more than 175 approvals and has so far filed over 310 ANDAs since the commencement of the filing process in FY04.

11:10 am Currency Update: Most emerging Asian currencies traded flat to marginally easier today as the dollar gained on the passage of a bill to temporarily extend US government funding, raising investors' optimism that a tax reform bill would also pass.

The US Congress passed legislation funding the government through December 22, averting a shutdown of agencies that would have been triggered at midnight Friday.

Congress and President Trump will now have to come up with a deal to keep the government operating beyond December 22. The dollar index, which gauges the greenback against a basket of six major rivals, was steady on the day and up 1 percent for the week.

11:02 am Maruti at new high: It has been a great year for Maruti Suzuki India as value buying due to better monthly sales growth and corporate earnings despite demonetisation & GST effects helped the stock register 71 percent growth in 2017.

The share price has crossed the milestone of Rs 9,000 for the first time on Friday, hitting a record high of Rs 9,119.95. It was also partly boosted by positive sentiment in equity markets.

The stock today gained 2.7 percent intraday, in addition to 3.3 percent rally in previous session.

10:52 am Gold Update: Gold prices drifted lower by 0.27 percent to Rs 28,589 per 10 grams in futures trade today as participants cut their bets amid a weak global trend.

Profit-booking by speculators also weighed on gold prices.

At the Multi Commodity Exchange, gold prices for delivery in February month declined by Rs 78, or 0.27 percent, to Rs 28,589 per 10 grams in business turnover of 264 lots.

Likewise, the metal for delivery in far-month April contracts was trading lower by Rs 77, or 0.26 percent, to Rs 28,652 per 10 grams in modest one lot.

10:42 am SEBI on Corporate Governance: Observing that a lot of improvement is needed in corporate governance framework, Sebi whole time member G Mahalingam has called for more research work on this issue particularly in the area of board evaluation.

"Lot more research and work can be done in the area of corporate governance. Recently Uday Kotak came out with its set of regulations. What are the areas in corporate governance that need improvement is a fertile area for research," Mahalingam said here late last evening.

"Board evaluation guidelines has been issued by Sebi but how is it functioning now is great area of interest. It is because contours of board evaluation are not clearly laid down. So if we can work a little more on that it would pave way for better corporate governance mechanism," he added.

10:31 am Market Check: Benchmark indices remained strong in morning as the Sensex was up 234.09 points at 33,183.30 and the Nifty gained 78 points at 10,244.70.

About three shares advanced for every share falling on the BSE.

All sectoral indices were strong for second consecutive session today. Nifty Metal, Pharma and Auto indices gained more than a percent.

10:15 am Rating Upgrade: CARE has upgraded Man Infracontruction's rating for bank facilities. The stock gained over a percent.

The rating agency has upgraded fund-based long-term bank facilities worth Rs 32.50 crore to A- with stable outlook, from BBB+.

The rating on non-fund-based long/short term bank facilities worth Rs 188.18 crore also upgraded by CARE to A- (stable) / A2+, from BBB+ (stable) / A2.

10:05 am Market Check: Equity benchmarks maintained uptrend, with the Sensex rising 177.44 points to 33,126.65 and the Nifty rallying 60.60 points to 10,227.30.

About 1,474 shares advanced against 547 declining shares on the BSE.

9:55 am Earnings Reaction: Shriram EPC share price was locked at 20 percent upper circuit at Rs 24.30 after the company turned profitable in the quarter ended September 2017.

The Shriram Group's engineering and infrastructure company has reported a profit of Rs 2.44 crore in July-September quarter against loss of Rs 21.8 crore in year-ago. Other income and revenue boosted profitability.

Revenue during the quarter grew by 44 percent to Rs 115.30 crore, compared with Rs 80.08 crore in corresponding period last fiscal.

Other income shot up to Rs 30.63 crore in September quarter 2017, from Rs 19.43 crore in year-ago.

9:45 am Buzzing: HDFC Bank gained a percent after Credit Suisse raised the target price to Rs 2,075 from Rs 1,955. This implies an upside of 6 percent.

The global research firm expects the bank to undertake its next capital raise in FY19 and highlighted how the stock has historically performed well around capital raise.

Further, it said that the bank has CET1 at 12.2 percent, similar to the levels seen in FY15.

Credit Suisse said that if USD 3 billion is raised, then expect 4 percent dilution and increase in capital base by 20 percent. It also said that the amount was enough to support growth for next 3-4 years, if the loan growth is at 23-25 percent.

9:38 am Rupee Trade: The Indian Rupee traded higher at 64.55 against the US dollar, rising 2 paise compared with previous close.

Increased selling of the American currency by exporters and banks supported the rupee. Positive equity markets also aided sentiment.

On Thursday, the rupee had lost further ground to end at a near two-week low of 64.57 against the US currency, falling by 5 paise.

Meanwhile, the BSE Sensex was up 171.86 points at 33,121.07 and the Nifty gained 51.30 points at 10,218.

9:33 am Drug Test: Glenmark Pharmaceuticals today announced that the first patient has been dosed in a Phase 1 trial of GBR 1342, an investigational bispecific antibody.

This first-in-human, open-label study's primary objective is to assess the safety and tolerability of increasing doses of GBR 1342 in multiple myeloma patients until a maximum tolerated dose is reached. Additional study objectives include assessment of biomarkers, immunogenicity and additional measures of anti-tumor activity.

GBR 1342 simultaneously targets CD38, as well as the CD3 T cell co-receptor. CD38 is an antigen target implicated in multiple myeloma and other malignancies of hematopoietic origin, as well as a variety of solid tumors.

9:26 am Results Reaction: Jet Airways' second quarter earnings disappointed the Street as profit fell sharply to Rs 49.6 crore, from Rs 549 crore in year-ago.

Revenue, however, increased to Rs 5,626.6 crore from Rs 5,453.2 crore YoY.

9:20 am Acquisition: Homegrown FMCG major Emami announced to acquire 30 percent stake in Lifestyle, which owns male grooming brand 'The Man Company'.

The stake will be acquired by December 31, 2018, through the infusion of required funds in Helios, the Kolkata-based company said in a statement.

The size of the deal was however not disclosed.

"The acquisition of stake by Emami is significant as it marks the company's entry in the fast-growing online male grooming segment," it said.

Emami is present in the male grooming segment through its brands Fair and Handsome and HE.

9:15 am Market Check: Equity benchmarks extended rally in opening on Friday, with the Sensex rising more than 150 points and the Nifty reclaiming 10,200 level on value buying and positive global cues.

Tata Motors, GAIL, Axis Bank, Kotak Mahindra Bank, ICICI Bank, Bajaj Auto, Bosch, Bajaj Finance and IndusInd Bank were early gainers.

The 30-share BSE Sensex was up 166.12 points at 33,115.33 and the 50-share NSE Nifty rose 50.30 points to 10,217. About 958 shares advanced against 263 falling shares on the BSE.

Bharti Infratel, NTPC, Lupin, Eicher Motors and HPCL were early losers.

Nifty Midcap and Nifty Bank indices gained more than 100 points.

Future Consumer, Shriram EPC, Escorts and Emami rallied 2-19 percent while Indian Hume Pipe and Jet Airways were under pressure post earnings, falling 3-6 percent.

Britannia Industries hit 52-week high and TVS Motor made a new high today.

Asian markets were trading higher, tracking positive lead from Wall Street, as investors stateside awaited developments regarding tax reform. Markets also awaited the release of trade data out of China for clues about the health of its economy.