Key benchmark indices continued to trade marginally in red in the afternoon session as investors remained cautious ahead of the Reserve Bank of India's monetary policy decision. Weak trend in Asian markets coupled with the losses in FMCG, banking, Capital Goods and IT stocks were putting pressure. However, downside was capped as some support came with a private report stating that the global economic order is expected to shift from advanced to emerging economies over the next few decades, and by 2040 India could edge past the US to become the world's second largest economy in purchasing power parity (PPP) terms. In scrip specific development, Tata Elxsi was up by over three percent after entering into a global partnership with M-Star Semiconductor to provide a comprehensive suite of software for MStar’s System-on-a-Chip (SoC) targeted at Set-Top Boxes (STB). Moreover, Idea Cellular was up by over a percent on planning to raise Rs 1,000 crore through issuance of non-convertible debentures on private placement basis.
On the global front, Asian markets were trading mostly in red as oil prices remained under pressure after data overnight showed a build-up in U.S. crude inventory. Back home, at present, both Sensex and Nifty were trading below the crucial 28,300 and 8,800 levels, respectively. The BSE Sensex is currently trading at 28298.41, down by 36.75 points or 0.13% after trading in a range of 28292.86 and 28391.64. There were 15 stocks advancing against 15 stocks declining on the index.
The broader indices were trading in green; the BSE Mid cap index was up by 0.26%, while Small cap index was up by 0.23%.
The top gaining sectoral indices on the BSE were Consumer Durables up by 2.75%, Metal up by 0.81%, Auto up by 0.76%, Realty up by 0.45% and Oil & Gas up by 0.43%, while FMCG down by 0.58%, Bankex down by 0.25%, Capital Goods down by 0.12% and IT down by 0.02% were the losing indices on BSE.
The top gainers on the Sensex were Coal India up by 1.52%, Mahindra & Mahindra up by 1.38%, Tata Motors up by 1.33%, TCS up by 1.30% and Wipro up by 1.07%. On the flip side, Axis Bank down by 1.36%, Dr. Reddys Lab down by 1.25%, ITC down by 1.19%, Bharti Airtel down by 1.18% and Infosys down by 0.97% were the top losers.
Meanwhile, in a move to create digital and less-cash economy, the Lok Sabha has passed the Payment of Wages (Amendment) Bill, 2017, under which specified industrial units will have to pay salaries and wages to workers solely via cheque or by electronic transfer to their bank. According to this bill, there is no need to get the consent of the workers to pay through cheques or through transfer in bank account.
The new Payment of Wages bill will also ensure that the other benefits like ESI, PF are also properly been passed onto the workers. Once the bill becomes law, it will also repeal the Payment of Wages (Amendment) Ordinance 2016, which was promulgated on December 28, 2016 and it replaces the Payment of Wages (Amendment) Bill 2016, which was introduced in Lok Sabha on December 15, 2016.
The amendment enables the Centre as well as state governments to notify industries where employers shall have pay wages either through cheque or crediting that into workers’ bank accounts. At present, the Act covers all those employees in certain categories of establishments whose wage do not exceed Rs 18,000 per month.Labour Minister Bandaru Dattatreya hailed the initiative aimed at promoting the welfare of workers and said that the new legislation will help check exploitation of workers engaged in un-organised sectors and they will get exact salaries in their bank accounts.
The CNX Nifty is currently trading at 8764.15, down by 4.15 points or 0.05% after trading in a range of 8763.40 and 8782.85. There were 30 stocks advancing against 21 stocks declining on the index.
The top gainers on Nifty were ACC up by 2.66%, Grasim Industries up by 2.12%, Ambuja Cement up by 1.81%, Zee Entertainment up by 1.77% and Bharti Infratel up by 1.76%. On the flip side, Axis Bank down by 1.51%, Bharti Airtel down by 1.46%, Dr. Reddys Lab down by 1.44%, ITC down by 1.23% and HCL Tech. down by 0.85% were the top losers.
The Asian markets were trading mostly in red; Jakarta Composite decreased 27.6 points or 0.51% to 5,353.88, Taiwan Weighted declined 11.31 points or 0.12% to 9,543.25, KOSPI Index was down by 10.13 points or 0.49% to 2,065.08 and FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI slipped 0.97 points or 0.06% to 1,687.87. On the flip side, Shanghai Composite increased 11.73 points or 0.37% to 3,164.82, Nikkei 225 was up by 96.82 points or 0.51% to 19,007.60 and Hang Seng gained 119.44 points or 0.51% to 23,451.01.