The BSE benchmark index Sensex today declined by over 36 points in early trade due to profit- booking by speculators after recent gains amid mixed trend at the Asian markets.
The 30-share barometer,which has gained over 64 points in the previous two sessions,fell by 36.07 points,or 0.21 per cent,to 17,426.74,with stocks of banking,realty and auto sectors succumbing to profit-booking.
Similarly,the wide-based National Stock Exchange index Nifty fell by 12.55 points,or 0.24 per cent,to 5,290.00
Brokers said besides profit-booking by participants after recent gains,mixed trend in cautious trading on Asian bourses ahead of a European Central Bank policy meeting later in the day.
In the Asian region,Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index was up marginally by 0.24 per cent,while Japan’s Nikkei Index edged lower by 0.08 per cent. The US market remained closed yesterday for ‘Independence Day’ holiday.
Pre open: Sensex,Nifty to watch
* The Nifty futures in Singapore Exchange fell 0.1 percent,while the MSCI Asia-Pacific index excluding Japan fell 0.5 percent.
* US markets were closed for the Independence Day holiday.
* Asian shares eased on Thursday as markets awaited the European Central Bank’s policy decision later in the day,while the euro was pressured by widespread expectations of a rate cut to support fragile euro zone growth.
FACTORS TO WATCH
* Reserve Bank of India continues its two-day board meeting in Chennai.
* Lenders to Kingfisher meet to discuss the future course of action on their loans to the beleaguered carrier (11 am IST)
INDIAN STOCKS TO WATCH
* India’s debt limit auction on Wednesday met tepid investor response due to investment restrictions in the auctioned limits and because of thin participation by some investors on account of a US holiday.
* The government is likely to revive an order allowing foreign investors to own majority stakes in Indian supermarkets and department stores after the election of a new President later this months.
* The finance ministry is readying a fiscal deficit reduction plan.
* State Street Corporation is in talks with India’s largest private lender,ICICI Bank,for a partnership in the securities custody business. The US custodian is likely to pick an equity stake in a proposed joint venture,according to officials close to the development.
* The finance ministry has asked the four government-owned general insurance companies to avoid any competition among them.
A finance ministry letter addressed to the chairmen and managing directors of these companies in May this year said,All PSU insurers shall necessarily share the data concerning premium,claims,etc,with respect to major accounts and ensure that there is no competition between them in any corporate/group account.
* Public sector banks are bound to see a drastic reduction in ATM transaction costs by inking one of the largest outsourcing deals in the financial sector under which nine firms have been contracted to install and manage over 63,000 ATMs.
* Mauritius has offered to rework its tax treaty with India to include a clause to ensure investors from the island nation enjoy tax benefits available under the treaty only if they fulfill certain conditions.
* The Reserve Bank of India has reduced transaction charges for payments made online through debit cards to a maximum of 1 percent.
The RBI is likely to relax some of the norms pertaining to microfinance institutions’ net worth,capital adequacy and provisioning needs.
* The ongoing impasse over supply agreements between Coal India and power companies would be resolved this month,Coal Minister Sriprakash Jaiswal said on Wednesday,hoping a decision on whether the state-run coal producer should import the fuel would be taken by month-end.
* India’s Deepak Fertilisers and Petrochemicals Corp has put on hold a planned $350 million ammonium nitrate manufacturing project in Australia,a company executive said,citing environmental,technical and economic factors.
The telecoms department has released the initial set of rules for the upcoming spectrum auctions,even as the government looks set to miss the Supreme Court appointed deadline of finishing the sale process by August-end.
* Mobile phone maker S Mobility plans to hive off its handset making division into a subsidiary and get strategic investment before listing the company,senior executive told ET.
* Four companies — Triveni Engineering,Elecon Engineering,Bharat Forge and a Belgian gear-box producer — have been shortlisted to buy controlling stake in the Coimbatore-based Shanthi Gears.
* Companies in Tamil Nadu are trying to come to grips with a startling internal discovery that ‘fringe militant trade unions’ have incognito established a foothold in key industrial belts in a state far removed from the heartland of Maoist extremism.
* Renault fired new competition in the fast-growing SUV market in India,pricing its new Duster off-roader at 719,000 rupees to compete with models such as Mahindra & Mahindra’s Scorpio and Tata Motors’ Safari.
* Italian auto parts maker Sogefi Group is adding new manufacturing capacity in India to increase the share of its Indian revenues to 5 percent of total group sales in the next five years from a current 1.2 percent,it said.
* French retail giant Groupe Auchan SA plans to open 85 stores in India over the next six years as it nears a formal deal with Landmark Group.
When contacted by Times of India,Francois Cathalifaud,Auchan’s press office manager,said in an emailed response,We do not make comments about market rumours. …We have held talks with some players in the (Indian) market.
While a spokesperson from the Landmark group,said the retailer was in discussions with potential partners to expand the business in India. We will let you know about the developments soon,the company spokesperson said in an emailed response.
* Trent Ltd is launching an aggressive expansion drive,while simultaneously rationalising costs. The retailer,which rolled out around 60 stores in the first 13 years of operations,is planning to add 24 more,around one third of its total count,this financial year alone.
* India’s largest vaccine-maker Serum Institute of India has bought Dutch polio vaccine-maker Bethloven Biologicals for about 80 million,Adar Poonawala,ED,Serum Institute told ET.
OTHER FACTORS TO WATCH
* Indian debt/FX factors to watch
* Euro,sterling on defensive as central bank action eyed
* Oil slides below $100,focus on grim economy
* Foreign institutional investor flows
* For closing rates of Indian ADRs