Market closes mixed, Nifty holds 10,400; PSU Bank index up 2%

3:30 pm Market Closing: Benchmark indices closed mixed amid last hour volatility.

The 30-share BSE Sensex was down 61.16 points at 33,856.78 while the 50-share NSE Nifty gained 5.50 points at 10,426.90.

About 1,718 shares advanced against 958 declining shares on the BSE.

3:15 pm Close of Banking Operations: A top South African court has allowed Bank of Baroda to close its operations in the country next month, over its links with the controversial India-born Gupta brothers who are facing massive corruption allegations.

Judge Ntendeya Mavundla of the Pretoria High Court yesterday dismissed with costs an application by 20 companies linked to the Guptas seeking to stop the Bank of Baroda (BoB) from closing all its accounts and leaving South Africa.

The Indian state-owned bank announced last month that it had decided to close down operations in South Africa in line with a revision of its global strategy.

BoB was the only bank that had been working with the Gupta companies after all South African banks severed ties with them following corruption allegations against Ajay, Atul and Rajesh Gupta involving billions of rands.

3:05 pm Market Update: Benchmark indices recovered sharply amid volatility, after the Ministry of Finance has received requests for withdrawal of Budget proposal on long term capital gains tax on shares.

But the government officials told CNBC-TV18 that there would be no rethinking on long-term capital gains tax.

The 30-share BSE Sensex trimmed losses to 10.62 points to trade at 33,907.32 while the 50-share NSE Nifty gained 13.10 points at 10,434.50.

The market breadth remained positive as about two shares advanced for every share falling on the BSE.

2:55 pm Lupin launches generic Safyral tablets in US: Lupin announced the launch of its Tydemytm tablets (Drospirenone, Ethinyl Estradiol, Levomefolate Calcium, 3mg/0.03mg/0.451mg and Levomefolate Calcium, 0.451mg) having received an approval from the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) earlier.
It is the generic equivalents of Bayer HealthCare Pharmaceuticals Inc.'s Safyral tablets.

It is indicated for use by women to prevent pregnancy and to raise folate levels in women who choose to use an oral contraceptive for contraception.

2:43 pm IPO: Mortgage lender HDFC said it will sell over 4 percent stake in its asset management arm HDFC AMC through initial public offer (IPO).

It said in a regulatory filing that the Committee of Directors set up by the HDFC board has approved offering up to 85,92,970 equity shares of Rs 5 each of HDFC AMC, representing 4.08 per cent of the paid-up share capital, for sale in the IPO.

Last November, the Housing Development Finance Corporation had approved the IPO of HDFC Asset Management Company Ltd (HDFC AMC).

The HDFC board had approved to offer part of its shares held in HDFC AMC to the public in one or more tranches so that its holding remains at least 50.01 per cent in the AMC arm.

2:35 pm Market update: The market continued to trade lower after wiping out morning gains, with the Sensex was down around 100 points as banks were off their day's high.

PSU Bank index trimmed gains to 2 percent from 5 percent as SBI lost 3 percent from day's high.

HDFC Bank, Reliance Industries, Infosys and ITC also lost half a percent each, putting additional pressure on the market.

Technology stocks continued to see downtrend, with the Nifty IT index falling nearly 2 percent due to sharp correction in TCS that was down over 5 percent after Tata Sons sold some stake in the company to pare group's debt.

2:20 pm Buzzing: Rushil Decor shares rallied nearly 10 percent intraday after research house Investment Imperative sees 43 percent potential upside in the stock on company's aggressive expansion plans in MDFs and WPCs.

"We are giving a target of Rs 1,277 for FY20 with an expectation for timely implementation of MDFs project in AP, utilisation rate of above 80 percent for newly implemented WPC project by FY20," it said while having a Buy call on the stock.

The company is currently trading at 19x on enterprise value to earnings before income tax on last twelve months basis. It is commanding premium in line with the industry averages largely due to strong growth expectations of the overall sector, it added.

2:08 pm Cut in Royalty: India has cut royalties that local seed companies pay to Monsanto Co for the second time in two years, potentially fuelling another row with the US company that threatened to leave the South Asian country in 2016.

India's agriculture ministry has decided to reduce royalties paid by Indian seed companies to Monsanto for its genetically modified (GM) cotton by 20.4 percent, said a government order released on Tuesday.

In 2016 the agriculture ministry cut Monsanto's royalties by more than 70 percent, triggering a long-running feud that drew in the Indian and US governments.

1:59 pm Market Update: The market wiped out its morning gains to trade lower as banking & financial stocks were off their day's high.

The 30-share BSE Sensex was down 119.09 points at 33,798.85 and the 50-share NSE Nifty fell 24.40 points to 10,397 amid consolidation.

Nifty Bank index turned negative while PSU Bank index trimmed gains to 2 percent from 5 percent.

The Nifty IT Index fell 1.5 percent. TCS lost 5 percent after Tata Sons sold some stake in the IT major to pare debt of its telecom company.

1:42 pm Europe Trade: European equities opened mixed, as investors monitored corporate earnings and awaited the release of US inflation data later in the day.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 was little changed from the previous session shortly after the opening bell, with sectors and major bourses pointing in opposite directions.

1:31 pm Deadlock continues in Lok Sabha: The impasse in the Lok Sabha continued for the seventh day with no let up in protests by members from opposition parties and TDP over issues like bank scams and special status demand for Andhra Pradesh, forcing the Speaker to adjourn the House.

Both Question Hour and Zero Hour could not be taken up as scores of members from the TDP, Congress, AIADMK, TRS and Trinamool Congress trooped into the Well.
Most of them were heard shouting "we want justice".

1:20 pm Stake Sale: Bharti Airtel informed exchanges that the transaction (between Singtel and Bharti Telecom) has been concluded with the allotment of 85,450,000 equity shares to Singtel International Investments Private Limited, an affiliate of Singtel.

With the above allotment, Singtel's total stake (along with its affiliates) in Bharti Telecom Limited has increased to 48.90 percent, whereas Bharti Enterprises continues to hold over 50 percent stake in Bharti Telecom Limited.

On February 5, the telecom operator had said Singtel would invest Rs 2,649 crore in Bharti Telecom.

1:10 pm Goa Mining Crisis: With just two days left for the Supreme Court order on closure of mining activity in Goa to come into effect, industry stakeholders are worried as the government is yet to find a solution to the impending crisis.

The mining industry stakeholders, who are concerned about the uncertainty hovering over their means of livelihood, met state transport minister Sudin Dhavalikar yesterday and demanded that the government seek the Centre's intervention in the matter.

Dhavalikar said he would approach the Union government for help in resolving the matter.

"We will be able to find a solution to the crisis by March 31," the minister told the stakeholders.

The SC had last month quashed the second renewal of iron ore mining leases given to 88 companies in Goa in 2015.

12:55 pm Buzzing: Future Consumer shares rallied more than 15 percent intraday after brokerage house Motilal Oswal said FCL was best play on the huge window of opportunity for brands using modern retail methods of distribution.

The investment firm has initiated coverage on FCL with a Buy rating and target price of Rs 76, implying around 50 percent upside.

"The company is expected to be PAT positive on consolidated level only in FY19 rendering near term P/E valuations meaningless. We, thus, value FCL on EV/sales basis, assigning a multiple of 2.2x (60 percent discount to EV/sales of coverage consumer universe). This results in a target price of Rs 76, implying around 50 percent upside," it explained.

Improving mix and operating leverage through rapid sales growth are expected to drive significant margin expansion over the next five years, according to the research house.

12:48 pm Market Update: The market is off day's high, but is still trading higher while midcaps outperformed frontliners.

Fall in inflation and improved industrial output boosted banking stocks. Nifty PSU Bank rallied 5 percent and Bank index gained 1 percent

12:41 pm Monsoon Forecast: India's monsoon rains are expected to be slightly below normal this year, while parts of Australia's eastern grain belt could be drier as an El Nino weather pattern may develop in the second half of 2018, a private US-based weather forecaster said.

Last year, India's annual monsoon season was below average, with some crop-growing central and northern states receiving less rain than needed.

Indian monsoon rains, which occur from June to September, were 95 percent of the long-term average last year compared with the Indian meteorological department (IMD)'s forecast of 98 percent.

12:31 pm Asia Update: Asian stock markets were mixed, after Wall Street gave up gains and as investors look forward to the release of US inflation data later in the day.

Shanghai Composite, Hang Seng and ASX 200 were down 0.3-0.5 percent while Nikkei and Kospi gained over 0.4 percent.

12:20 pm Non-Maintenance Charge: The State Bank of India reduced its charges on non-maintenance of an average monthly balance (AMB) in savings account by up to 75 per cent, effective April 1.

The charges for non-maintenance of AMB for customers in metro and urban centres have been reduced from a maximum of Rs 50 per month plus goods and services tax (GST), to Rs 15 per month plus GST. The above revision will benefit 25 crore bank customers.

For semi-urban and rural centres, the charges have been reduced from Rs 40 per month plus GST to Rs 12 and Rs 10 per month plus GST, respectively, the bank said in a release.

12:10 pm Carriers cancel flights: Budget carriers IndiGo and GoAir cancelled as many as 65 flights after the country's aviation regulator DGCA grounded 11 of their A320Neo planes with faulty Pratt & Whitney engines, causing severe inconvenience to hundreds of flyers.

The Gurugram-based IndiGo cancelled 47 of its 1,000-odd flights per day, the Wadia Group-promoted GoAir said it had cancelled 18 flights.

GoAir has cancelled 18 flights originating from over eight cities, the airline said in a statement to PTI. GoAir operates 230 flights per day.

IndiGo announced on its website the cancellations of some 47 flights across its domestic network for today.

11:58 am Buzzing: Shares of Starlite Components added 9 percent intraday as the company has bagged an order worth Rs 335 crore.

The company in joint venture with Virtuoso OptoElectronics has bagged a contract of Rs 335 crore from the Directorate of Urban Local Bodies.

The contract includes replacement of existing street lights with energy efficient LED street lights, installation of centralized control and monitoring system panel or smart lighting system along with operation and maintenance for a period of 10.5 years in the area covered under Municipal Corporation, councils and committees within Hisar, Karnal and Sonepat districts, covering a total of 15 cities.

11:48 am Market Update: The market continued to trade higher amid consolidation, with the Nifty holding 10,450 level, backed by banking & financials.

PSU Banks extended rally, with the PSU Bank index rising 4 percent after Bank of India announced recovery of Standby Letter of Credits worth Rs 7,000 crore from other banks.

Nifty IT index underperformed, falling over a percent due to sharp correction in TCS that lost 5 percent after Tata Sons offloaded some stake.

11:38 am Appointment of Director: Vedanta said the board of directors today has approved the appointment of UK Sinha as an additional non­executive independent director on the board of the company for a fixed term effective from close of business hours on March 13, 2018 till August 10, 2021. He was the former SEBI chairman.

11:20 am Interim Dividend: Vedanta said board of directors today approved the first interim dividend of Rs 21.20 per share on face value of Re 1 per share for the financial year 2017-18.

The record date for the purpose of payment of the first interim dividend to equity shareholders and dividend to preference shareholders is Wednesday, March 21, 2018.

11:08 am USFDA Approval: Shares of Cadila Healthcare added 2 percent as it has received USFDA nod for Tizanidine tablets.

Zydus Cadila has received a final approval from the USFDA to market Tizanidine tablets USP in the strength of 2 mg and 4 mg.

The drug is used to treat muscle spasms caused by certain conditions such as multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injury and works by helping to relax the muscles.
It will be manufactured at the group's formulation manufacturing facility at SEZ, Ahmedabad.

10:55 am Buzzing: Shares of Suzlon Energy rose 3.4 percent intraday on commissioning of its new product.

Suzlon Group announced the installation and commissioning of its new product, S128; the largest wind turbine generator (WTG) in India.

The first prototype of S128 has been commissioned at the Sanganeri, Tamilnadu. The testing is underway with certification expected in Q3 of CY2018.

The S128 WTG is available in 2.6 MW to 2.8 MW variants and offers hub heights up to140 meters.

10:46 am Market Update: Benchmark indices gained momentum after tepid opening, with the Sensex rising 125.10 points to 34,043.04, driven by banking & financials and oil stocks.
The 50-share NSE Nifty was up 45.30 points at 10,466.70 while Nifty Midcap index gained 0.8 percent.

The market breadth also improved as about three shares advanced for every share falling on the BSE.

10:35 am Buzzing: Share price of Sun TV Network and Engineers India gained more than 1 percent intraday on declaration of interim dividend.

Sun TV Network in its board meeting held on March 12, 2018 declared a fourth interim dividend of Rs 2.50 per equity share (i.e. 50 percent) for the financial year 2017-18.

Engineers India declared an interim dividend of Rs 2.50 per share of the company for the financial year 2017-18.

The interim dividend for the financial year 2017-18 on the equity shares of the company shall be payable on and from March 23, 2018.

10:25 am  China Unveiled Plans: China unveiled plans for the biggest ministry shake-up in years, including the merger of its banking and insurance regulators to reduce risks to its financial system from a rapid build-up in debt.

The massive reshuffle plan of various ministries is aimed at making the government better-structured, more efficient, and service-oriented.

China is also due to announce appointment of new ministers and officials, including the foreign minister, as part of changes in every five years.

10:15 am IPO Opens: State-owned Bharat Dynamics has opened its initial public offer for subscription, with a price band of Rs 413-428 per share.

The initial public offering of 2,24,51,953 equity shares is an an offer for sale by the promoter, The President of India, acting through the Ministry of Defence.

The company has reserved a portion of 4,58,203 equity shares for allotment to eligible employees. The issue will close on March 15.

Bharat Dynamics aims to raise Rs 927.27 crore at lower end of price band and Rs 960.94 crore at higher band, through the issue.

Employees and retail investors will get shares at a discount of Rs 10 per share on offer price.

Bids can be made for a minimum lot of 35 equity Shares and in multiples of 35 shares thereafter.

10:02 am Banks in focus: Banks stocks saw heavy buying interest after Bank of India recovered Rs 7,000 crore worth of Standby Letter of Credits from other banks.

PSU Bank index was up 3.5 percent and Nifty Bank index gained 1 percent, outperforming the Nifty that rose 0.3 percent.

Bank of India, OBC, Union Bank, Bank of Baroda, Andhra Bank, Syndicate Bank, PNB, Canara Bank, Allahabad Bank, Indian Bank, IDBI Bank and SBI rallied up to 9 percent.
Axis Bank, ICICI Bank and Federal Bank gained around 1.5 percent.

9:55 am Rupee Trade: The rupee inched higher by 9 paise to 64.95 against the US dollar on better-than-expected inflation numbers and mild selling of the greenback by exporters amid sustained foreign capital inflows.

However, the dollar gains against most major global currencies overseas limited the gains for the domestic unit.

A 7.5 percent growth in industrial output in January and selling of the American currency by exporters supported the rupee, forex dealers said.

Yesterday, the rupee ended higher by 13 paise to close at 65.04 against the US currency on the back of foreign fund inflows after sharp gains in equity markets and weakness in the dollar against global currencies.

9:45 am Buzzing Stocks: Shares of Bank of India rose 10 percent on the back of recovery of Rs 7,000 crore from other banks.

The bank has recovered Rs 7,000 crore worth Standby Letters of Credit (SLOCs) in the last two months and the balance of Rs 2,000 crore would be recovered in another two months, a top bank official said.

This recovery will substantially improve the bank's balance sheet, Bank of India Executive Director N Damodharan told reporters.

The bank has embarked on a plan, following restrictions from RBI on it under the Prompt Corrective Action (PCA) framework. The bank is aiming to bring down its net NPA ratio substantially, to below 6 percent, he said.

The company had reported net loss of Rs 2,341.20 crore for the December quarter 2017, against profit of Rs 107.72 crore in year-ago.

Its gross non-performing assets (NPA) were sharply higher at 16.93 percent in Q3 against 12.62 percent in previous quarter while net NPAs were also higher at 10.29 percent compared to 6.47 percent QoQ.

9:35 am Market Update: Benchmark indices continued to consolidate in morning after a 2 percent rally seen in previous session, following tepid global cues.

The 30-share BSE Sensex was up 10.45 points at 33,928.39 while the Nifty continued to hold the 10,400 levels, rising 1.90 points to 10,423.30.

The broader markets outperformed frontliners, with the Nifty Midcap index rising 0.3 percent. About two shares advanced for every share falling on the BSE.

9:27 am Stake Sale: TCS shares fell more than 5 percent in morning after the large block deal trade.

Tata Sons, the promoter of major operating companies of the Tata group, was planning to raise around Rs 8,200 crore by selling stake in the IT major, according to investment banking sources.

Tata Sons was looking to sell around 2.83 crore shares amounting to about 1.48 percent stake in TCS, the sources added.

After the proposed share sale, Tata Sons' holding in Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) would come down to around 72 percent from 73.52 percent as on December, 2017.

The sources said Tata Sons intends to use the proceeds from the share sale to reduce debt in the group's telecom arm Tata Teleservices which has debt of around Rs 40,000 crore.

Last year in October, Tata Group had agreed to sell its loss-making mobile telephony business to Bharti Airtel on "a debt-free cash-free basis".

9:20 am Master Supply Agreement: Having put their merger on hold, ACC Ltd and Ambuja Cements - the two Indian units of LafargeHolcim - today said they plan to enter into a 'master supply agreement' with each other.

Both the companies have sought approval from their shareholders to "enter into, execute and deliver the master supply agreement" with each other, they said in separate regulatory filings.

The agreement is for supply of cement, clinker and raw materials such as fuels, fly ash, slag and gypsum. This would also include spare parts.

"Each individual contract/arrangement/ transaction shall be carried out by way of purchase order based on the requirement of the company," it added.

9:15 am Market Check: Benchmark indices opened mildly lower on Tuesday after the January's industrial output and February's CPI inflation data announced later in the day yesterday. It was a bit of profit booking after yesterday's more than 600 points rally on the Sensex.

The 30-share BSE Sensex was down 25.52 points at 33,892.42 and the 50-share NSE Nifty fell 7.50 points to 10,413.90.

TCS was biggest loser among Nifty50 stocks, falling more than 5 percent after big block deal.

Nifty Midcap was down 38 points and Nifty Bank was flat.

UCO Bank, IDBI Bank, PNB, Canara Bank, Bank of Baroda, Balrampur Chini, Shree Renuka, Dhampur Sugar, InterGlobe Aviation and Biocon fell up to 5 percent.

Future Consumer rallied 6 percent.

Industrial output expanded at 7.5 percent in January, from 7.1 percent in previous month while retail inflation fell to a 4-month low of 4.44 percent in February from 5.07 percent in previous month.

Asian stock markets were lower as Washington's policies hit regional steel producers. The Nikkei 225, Shanghai Composite, Hang Seng and ASX 200 slipped 0.10-0.6 percent.

The S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average slumped on Monday as the US tariffs signed into law last week by President Donald Trump weighed on industrials.