Sensex ends 176 points higher, Nifty above 10,500; metals gain big

3:30 pm Market at Close: Benchmark indices had a strong day of trade, with the Sensex ending over 150 points higher, while the Nifty reclaimed 10,500.

The Sensex closed up 176.26 points or 0.52% at 33969.64, while the Nifty was up 61.60 points or 0.59% at 10504.80. The market breadth was positive as 1,907 shares advanced, against a decline of 1,003 shares, while 433 shares were unchanged.

Tata Steel, L&T and Dr Reddy's gained the most on both indices, while Tata Motors, Axis Bank, and Tata Power were the top losers.

All sectoral indices ended in the green, barring IT and auto, with PSU banks, infra and metals being the biggest gainers.

In the broader markets space, midcaps had a very good session, with the Nifty midcap index ending over 1 percent higher.

3:22 pm Buzzing Stock: Tata Motors shares fell more than 1 percent intraday Thursday following weak JLR sales data for the month of December.

Jaguar Land Rover, the UK's largest luxury car maker, sold 11,394 units in last month of passing year, which was lower by 9.4 percent compared with 12,573 units sold in year-ago.

Sales data of both brands was weak in December.

Jaguar sales in the US were down by 20.5 percent at 3,414 units while Land Rover sales declined 3.6 percent to 7,980 units YoY.

3:05 pm Brokerage view: News reports suggest that Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) likely pay a big premium for Hindustan Petroleum Corporation (HPCL).

In an interview to CNBC-TV18, Harshvardhan Dole, VP-Institutional Equities at IIFL shared his views and readings on the same.

"The article does talk about ONGC willing to pay a premium to HPCL to acquire government stake. And this has come after various statements in the press, in media that the deal is likely to be concluded at the CMP. So definitely some premium will be offered by either ONGC or essentially when the deal is concluded," he said.

2:55 pm ONGC rallies: Oil and Natural Gas Corporation shares rallied more than 3 percent following further spike in crude oil prices and after a media report indicated that ONGC may pay Rs 45,000 crore for HPCL stake.

Crude oil prices extended rally further, hitting a fresh two-and-a-half year highs on Thursday amid tensions in Iran and due to ongoing OPEC-led production cuts.

Positive global equity markets amid strong data from leading economies including the United States, Japan and Germany also boosted sentiment.

2:35 pm Fund infusion: The Rs 2.1-trillion fund infusion plans for the capital-starved public sector banks is likely to reduce gap in their capital profiles with their private sector peers, says a report.

The report also predicts that bad loan issues that the banks face today may peak by this fiscal year. Gross bad loans of the system has crossed 10.2 per cent or Rs 10 trillion by the December quarter and RBI has warned that it will cross 11.1 per cent by the next September quarter.

Last October, government had announced a capital allocation plan for public sector banks to the tune of about Rs 2,11,000 crore over the next two years. Of this Rs 18,139 crore will be met through budgetary provisions, and Rs 1.35 trillion through recapitalisation bonds.

2:24 pm Market Check: Benchmark indices have continued to hold on to the strong momentum, with the Sensex trading over 100 points higher, while the Nifty is hovering near the 10,500-mark.

At 14:24 hrs IST, the Sensex is up 137.81 points or 0.41% at 33931.19, and the Nifty up 41.70 points or 0.40% at 10484.90. The market breadth is positive as 1771 shares have advanced, 956 shares declined, and 451 shares are unchanged.

1:55 pm Europe higher: European markets opened higher on Thursday morning, as investors reacted to robust economic data from both sides of the Atlantic, while oil prices hovered around two-and-a-half year highs amid unrest in Iran.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 was 0.39 percent higher shortly after the opening bell, with almost all sectors and major bourses in positive territory.

1:40 pm PSU banks gain: Shares of PSU banks gained 1-9 percent intraday as investors cheered the PSU bank recap-related developments.

The Nifty PSU bank index is up almost 3 percent.

According to a report on CNBC-TV18, quoting sources, the government is likely to make an announcement on PSU recap. The bond size for the same is likely to be approximately Rs 80,000 crore. The channel further reported that the Centre could seek a Parliament nod for the recap as an additional supplementary demand for grants.

1:25 pm Buzzing Stock: Shares of Veer Energy and Infrastructure advanced 10 percent intraday Thursday as the company has bagged order for 2000 KW solar rooftop in Sanand, Gujarat.

The company has been aggressively marketing B 2 C model of solar rooftop installations via net metering concept and has recently received order of 2000 KW.

This new order would be of solar rooftop (via net metering technology) has been received from a renowned infrastructure developer at Ahmedabad.

12:55 pm Infra outlook: Fresh investments in India have plunged to a 13-year low as stalled projects rise. In an interview to CNBC-TV18, Mahesh Vyas, MD & CEO of Centre for Monitoring the Indian economy (CMIE) spoke at length on what the infrastructure space can expect in this scenario from Budget 2018.

Vyas said that the capacity utilisation whether in manufacturing or power sector is so low that there is no good reason to believe that demand will pick up and therefore there is no good reason why industry should invest again.

He further said that while new investments were falling, the completions were increasing in last two years. However, we have seen a sharp fall in project completion this year.

12:40 pm Market Check: A rally in PSU banks pushed up benchmark indices higher in the afternoon trade, with the Sensex rising over 100 points, while the Nifty was over 10,450-mark.

The Sensex is up 101.06 points or 0.30% at 33894.44, and the Nifty up 30.20 points or 0.29% at 10473.40. About 1741 shares have advanced, 859 shares declined, and 462 shares are unchanged.

12:25 pm Aadhaar security breach? An investigation by The Tribune has found that details of any of the about billion Aadhaar numbers issued in India can be accessed for as little as Rs 500. The report says that that the racket could have started six months ago over anonymous Whatsapp groups.

For Rs 500, The Tribune purchased a service being offered over Whatsapp. The newspaper's reporters claim that within 10 minutes, they had access to all details any individual had provided to the UIDAI (Unique Identification Authority of India). An ''agent'' provided them a login and password to a portal with all the data.

The report added that for another Rs 300, the ''agent'' had given them a software that facilitates printing of Aadhaar cards with just the Aadhaar number.

12:10 pm Buzzing Stock: Shares of Centrum Capital rose 4.5 percent intraday Thursday as the company is going raise Rs 18000 crore.

"The company at its meeting held on January 3 has approved the issue of convertible warrants on preferential basis to BG Advisory Services LLP, being a corporate entity forming part of the promoter group at the company, up to a maximum amount of Rs 300 crore, company said in release.

The company will also raise funds through issue of securities in one or more tranches, upto a sum not exceeding Rs 750 crore.

11:50 am Buzzing Stock: Shares of Bank of Maharashtra added more than 7 percent intraday Thursday as company is going to raise equity capital of Rs 650 crore.

The company's board of directors at their meeting held on January 3, 2018 considered and approved the proposal of raising of equity capital up to Rs 650 crore by way of preferential allotment in favour of government.

The bank will fix the issue price for the said preferential allotment of shares to the government as on January 17.

11:35 am Management Speak: In an interview to CNBC-TV18, RS Sodhi, MD of Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation (GCMMF), S Sivakumar, Group Head-Agriculture & IT Business at ITC and VP Mahendra, VC & MD of VST Tillers Tractors discussed about what one should expect if one is getting a farm focused Budget.

Sodhi said Indian farmers are in distress due to decline in commodity prices.

He further said that 30 percent of agriculture contribution is made by animal husbandry. Therefore, growth in farmers' income is due to increase in animal husbandry.

He also mentioned that there should higher budget allocation to animal husbandry to improve farm income.

11:20 am Market Outlook: With earnings and Union Budget announcements being the next set of triggers for the market, investors are in some kind of a wait and watch mode now.

But HSBC Global AMC-India believes in the long term, market will be working only on the basis of earnings.

''What happens to the fiscal situation is a concern for the market and it does react in the short term though. But we have had record high fiscal deficits, high interest rates and inflation earlier, but the compounded return of equity during that period was very good,'' Tushar Pradhan, CIO, HSBC Global AMC-India told CNBC-TV18 in an interview. So, from a long-term perspective, the equity market may not be impacted by fiscal slippage.

11:10 am PSU bank recap: According to a report on CNBC-TV18, quoting sources, the government is likely to make an announcement on PSU recap. The bond size for the same is likely to be approximately Rs 80,000 crore. The channel further reported that the Centre could seek a Parliament nod for the recap as an additional supplementary demand for grants.

10:55 am IT outlook: CLSA said CY17 saw a better-than-feared year for IT sector even as growth & earnings disappointed.

"We don't see strong bottom-up signs of growth recovery. Companies will have to negotiate challenges from immigration & tax change distractions," it added.

The research house expects demand to continue to remain soft in Q3 results for IT companies. December 2017 will be a seasonally weak quarter with constant currency QoQ growth of 1-2.6 percent, it said.

10:35 am Buzzing Stock: Share price of Allahabad Bank slipped nearly 3 percent intraday Thursday as RBI has put the company under the PCA framework.

Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has placed the bank under prompt corrective action (PCA) framework, consequent to the onsite inspection under the risk based supervision model carried out for the year ended March 2017, and the report issued thereof, company said in release.

The RBI inspection has revealed high net NPA and negative ROA for two consecutive years.

10:20 am Market Check: Equity benchmarks are trading steady after witnessing a mildly higher opening, with the Sensex trading around 50 points higher, while the Nifty held 10,450.

At 10:20 hrs IST, the Sensex is up 53.16 points or 0.16% at 33846.54, and the Nifty up 16.70 points or 0.16% at 10459.90. The market breadth is positive as 1,637 shares advanced, against a decline of 697 shares, while 465 shares were unchanged.

Dr Reddy's is trading higher after seeing over 4 percent intraday fall on Wednesday. Other index gainers include Coal India and ONGC.

Tata Motors, HCL Tech and ICICI Bank are the index losers.

9:56 am Management Speak: Ashok Leyland is on a tear with a record number of commercial vehicle sales in December 2017. In an interview to CNBC-TV18, Gopal Mahadevan, CFO of the company spoke at length about the same. We are seeing new truck demand from chemical industry, fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) sector and e-commerce, said Mahadevan. According to him, goods and services tax (GST) has had a positive effect on demand. He expects 10 percent growth in industry volume by the end of FY18.

9:50 am Buzzing Stock: Shares of SJVN and Unichem Laboratories zoomed to their 52-week high, gaining 15 percent and 6 percent respectively in the early trade on Thursday as the companies are going to consider buyback of shares on January 8.

The board meeting of SJVN will be held on January 08, 2018, to consider the proposal for buyback of the fully paid-up equity shares of the company.

For prevention of insider trading in dealing with securities of SJVN, the trading window shall remain closed from Jan 03, 2018 to Jan 10, 2018 (both days inclusive), in connection with the above scheduled meeting.

9:40 am Market Outlook: Dharmesh Shah of ICICI Research said the research house believes that any correction from hereon should be used as an incremental buying opportunity as Q3FY18 earnings expectations and Budget expectations would influence investor sentiment.

Prior to the Nifty hitting a record high last week, broader markets were already quoting at their life-time highs, as replicated by the NSE Midcap 100 and Smallcap 100 indices.

Moreover, while the Nifty made a lower low between mid-November and early-December, neither the midcap nor the Smallcap index confirmed these developments in the Nifty as they formed higher lows.

All these points to a robustness in the bullish trend of the broader markets. This is something which we believe also bodes well for benchmark indices.

9:31 am Stake Sale: Public sector lender Dena Bank has invited bids to sell its 1.56 percent stake in NSDL, reports CNBC-TV18 quoting Cogencis.

The stock rallied more than 4 percent after stake sale news.

9:28 am Buzzing: Shares of Navkar Corporation added 4 percent in the early trade as Ashish Kacholia has acquired stake in the company.

Investor, Ashish Rameshchandra Kacholia has bought 10,00,000 shares (0.7 percent) of the company at Rs 187 on the NSE.

Also, Everest Finance And Investment Company bought 10,00,000 shares at Rs 187.06 on the BSE.

9:21 am Infosys CEO salary: Infosys CEO Salil Parekh will be paid a fixed salary of Rs 6.5 crores and would be eligible for variable pay of Rs 9.75 crores at the end of the 2018-2019 fiscal year, according to a top company executive.

"Infosys CEO Salil Parekh will be paid a fixed salary of Rs 6.5 crores. He would be eligible for variable pay of Rs 9.75 crores at the end of the fiscal year," independent board member at Infosys Kiran Mazumdar Shaw told PTI here.

Former CEO Vishal Sikka earned USD 6.75 million in FY17 much to disliking of Infosys founder NR Narayana Murthy.

Wipro CEO Abidali Neemuchwala is getting a bit over USD 2 million.

Shaw, who is part of the Nomination and Remuneration Committee (NRC), said Parekh will also receive Rs 3.25 crores in restricted stock units.

"He will also get Rs 13 crores in annual performance equity grants," she said.

Parekh will also get a one-time equity grant of Rs 9.75 crores, Shaw said.

9:15 am Market Check: Equity benchmarks started off trade on a positive note, with the Nifty hovering around 10,450 level.

The 30-share BSE Sensex was up 56.99 points at 33,850.37 and the 50-share NSE Nifty rose 16 points to 10,459.20.

ONGC , Axis Bank, L&T, GAIL, Sun Pharma, Dr Reddy's Labs and Adani Ports were early gainers.

Tata Motors, ICICI Bank, Yes Bank and Tech Mahindra were early losers.

Nifty Midcap was up 0.2 percent.

Jubilant Foodworks, GM Breweries, SJVN, UCO Bank, Bank of Maharashtra and Navkar Corp gained 2-12 percent.

Nitesh Estates shot up 20 percent on a media report that Chinese company Fosun is looking for Rs 800 crore stake in company.