Indian equity benchmarks have made a cautious start and are trading near neutral lines, as traders holding their bet after yesterday’s huge rally. Investors are getting some support with US Federal Reserve holding interest rates steady in its first meeting since President Donald Trump took office. Meanwhile, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley though maintained fiscal prudence in the Budget, the foreign investors may have some renewed interest as the Finance Minister tweaked the domestic transfer pricing rules and exempted some FPIs from indirect transfer provision. He also further clarified the GAAR rules.
On the global front, Asian markets were exhibiting mixed trend digesting a raft of earnings reports. The Japanese market was trading lower as the yen turned strong against dollar after Fed kept its policy rates unchanged. The US markets ended higher in last session after a lackluster trade, the gains came following the Federal Reserve's widely expected decision to leave interest rates unchanged.
Back home, stocks related to infra space edged higher, as infra got a major push in the budget with announcement of reduced corporate income tax rates for medium and small enterprises (MSME), infrastructure status to affordable housing, allocation of Rs 500 crore for setting up Mahila Shakti Kendra at village level and expansion of BharatNet project besides many other. The market breadth indicating the overall health of the market was strong, with 1,283 shares gaining and 776 shares declining, while a total of 93 shares were unchanged.
The BSE Sensex is currently trading at 28172.97, up by 31.33 points or 0.11% after trading in a range of 28078.08 and 28194.00. There were 16 stocks advancing against 14 stocks declining on the index.
The broader indices were trading in green; the BSE Mid cap index gained 0.66%, while Small cap index was up by 0.35%.
The top gaining sectoral indices on the BSE were Oil & Gas up by 1.27%, FMCG up by 1.24%, PSU up by 0.74%, TECK up by 0.43% and Consumer Durables was up by 0.35%, while Metal down by 0.96%, Auto down by 0.60%, Capital Goods down by 0.42% and Realty was down by 0.38% were the top losing indices on BSE.
The top gainers on the Sensex were Bharti Airtel up by 2.71%, ITC up by 2.35%, NTPC up by 2.02%, ICICI Bank up by 1.71% and ONGC was up by 1.65%. On the flip side, Tata Motors down by 2.06%, Mahindra & Mahindra down by 2.05%, GAIL India down by 1.70%, HDFC down by 1.34% and Wipro was down by 1.26% were the top losers.
Meanwhile, Niti Aayog vice-chairman Arvind Panagariya has expressed hope that the economic growth in the next fiscal year would be in the range of 7-7.5 percent. He said ‘By nature, I am an optimist, so I would remain on the higher side of it. So, if you feel that this range is too wide, personally, I would narrow it down to 7-7.5 percent and maybe on the higher side of it with higher probability’.
Arvind Panagariya has said that FY18 growth targets should not be a problem with remonetisation substantially accomplished. On the government's fiscal roadmap, he said that though the government should stick to its fiscal consolidation plan, a minor deviation from the roadmap is acceptable. He added that heavens will not fall if there is a 10-20 basis points deviation from the fiscal deficit target. He also said that a fiscal deficit target of around 3.2 percent would be comfortable, but it edging towards 3.5 percent or beyond would be a serious red flag.
The Economic Survey for 2016-17, tabled in Parliament by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, pegged India’s economic growth at 6.5 percent for the current fiscal, down from 7.6 percent recorded in the last financial year, but it added that growth is expected to rebound in the range of 6.75-7.5 percent in 2017-18. The Survey’s GDP growth figure for the current fiscal is lower than 7.1 percent the Central Statistics Office had forecast earlier this month.
The CNX Nifty is currently trading at 8713.25, down by 3.15 points or 0.04% after trading in a range of 8692.05 and 8727.00. There were 20 stocks advancing against 31 stocks declining on the index.
The top gainers on Nifty were Idea Cellular up by 4.93%, ITC up by 2.41%, Bharti Airtel up by 2.38%, BPCL up by 2.30% and NTPC was up by 1.84%. On the flip side, Mahindra & Mahindra down by 2.33%, Hindalco down by 2.24%, Tata Motors down by 2.07%, Wipro down by 1.73% and Bosch was down by 1.60% were the top losers.
Asian markets were trading mixed; Taiwan Weighted rose 3.86 points or 0.04% to 9,451.81, FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI increased 4.24 points or 0.25% to 1,675.78 and Jakarta Composite was up by 9.48 points or 0.18% to 5,336.65.
On the flip side, Hang Seng decreased 147.69 points or 0.63% to 23,170.70, Nikkei 225 declined 133.79 points or 0.7% to 19,014.29 and KOSPI Index was down by 0.24 points or 0.01% to 2,080.24.