The Indian markets after a choppy trade and remaining most of the day in red managed a flat but positive close in last session. Today, the start of the another crucial week likely to be in green amid positive global cues, however, the marketmen will be eyeing the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) policy meeting on February 8, with hopes of a 25 bps rate cut. Traders are likely to get some support with Economic Affairs Secretary Shaktikanta Das’ statement expressing confidence that the economy will grow upwards of 7 per cent next fiscal. He reiterated that there will be transient impact of demonetisation on the economy, but it will not spill over to the next fiscal. The Economic Affairs Secretary taking a dig at global rating agencies for failing to upgrade India's sovereign rating despite significant improvement in macroeconomic parameters, has said the agencies are several steps behind from reality and are missing out on something which only they can best explain. There will be some buzz in the financial stocks, on the reports that the government is likely to introduce a Bill for resolution of insolvent financial firms during the current session of Parliament in order to address the bankruptcy issue in the financial sector. The steel stocks too will be in action, as the Steel Minister Chaudhary Birendra Singh has said that the industry must gear up to face global competition as protectionist measures like minimum import price (MIP) and anti-dumping cannot continue indefinitely. There will be lots of result reactions based on earnings performance.
The US markets ended higher in the last session, supported by upbeat jobs data and the Dow climbed back above 20,000 and the Nasdaq reached a new record closing high. The Asian markets have made an all green start led by banks after the Trump administration planned to roll back financial regulations.
Back home, Indian benchmark indices ended the range bound day of trade on a flat note with positive bias as investors preferred to stay on the sidelines ahead of the Reserve Bank of India's (RBI’s) policy meeting next week. Sentiments got some support with the American industry bodies lauding the Budget, saying Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has done an 'admirable job' in creating a vision that will propel the domestic economy while remaining cognizant about foreign investors eying the Indian market. However, investors remained cautious with the report that India’s services languished, with new business orders falling for the third straight month, amid muted inflationary pressure that could offer RBI much room to remain accommodative in its next policy meet next week. The Nikkei India Services Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI), which tracks services sector companies on a monthly basis, came in at 48.7 in January, from 46.8 in December 2016. A reading above 50 indicates expansion while any score below the mark denotes contraction. Meanwhile, shares of public sector undertaking (PSU) banks extended their rally for the third straight trading sessions post Budget. Around six PSU banks, including Bank of Baroda, Bank of India, IDBI Bank, Indian Bank, Union Bank of India and Vijaya Bank have hit their respective 52-week highs on the in other wise range-bound market. On the other hand, auto stocks declined after the report that the automobile sales in January were a mixed bag in all segments, including passenger cars, two-wheelers and commercial vehicles, as rural markets have still not picked up. In scrip specific development, Sun TV Network hogged the limelight by gaining as much as 26% after a special CBI court on Thursday dropped all charges against former telecom minister Dayanidhi Maran and Sun TV promoter Kalanithi Maran in the Aircel-Maxis case. Also, shares of Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) made a strong debut on Friday, with the scrip listing at Rs 1,085, a 35% premium over the issue price of Rs 806 on the NSE. The stock eventually settled the trade 33% higher at Rs 1,070 against its issue price. Finally, the BSE Sensex gained 13.91 points or 0.05% to 28240.52, while the CNX Nifty was up by 6.70 points or 0.08% to 8,740.95.