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Sensex, Nifty end with strong gains

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Equity indices bounced off early lows and ended with strong gains on Thursday. The Nifty reclaimed the 13,000 mark. The recovery was backed by firmness in metal, pharma and banks stocks. All the sectoral indices on the NSE ended in the green.

As per the provisional closing data, the S&P BSE Sensex, jumped 431.64 points or 0.98% at 44,259.72. The Nifty 50 index spurted 155.60 points or 1.21% at 13,014.

Trading was volatile as traders rolled over positions in the F&O segment from November series to December series. The November 2020 F&O contracts expired today.

The broader indices ended higher. The S&P BSE Mid-Cap index gained 1% while the S&P BSE Small-Cap index rose 0.72%.

The market breadth was strong. On the BSE, 1,754 shares rose and 1,000 shares fell. A total of 186 shares were unchanged.

COVID-19 Update:

Total COVID-19 confirmed cases worldwide stood at 6,03,97,539 with 14,21,352 deaths. India reported 4,52,344 active cases of COVID-19 infection and 1,35,223 deaths while 86,79,138 patients have been discharged, according to the data from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India.

SEBI Regulations:

The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has withdrawn a proposal to increase the margin requirement for non-futures and options (F&O) stocks in the cash market. Earlier this year, as the volatility spiked in the stocks following COVID-19 pandemic and heavy fall in global equities, SEBI, on March 20 this year had proposed to raise the margin requirement for non-F&O stocks to 40% in a phased manner.

Economy:

RBI released Quarterly Statistics on Deposits and Credit of Scheduled Commercial Banks (SCBs) yesterday. Bank credit growth (Y-o-Y) decelerated to 5.8% in September 2020 from 8.9% a year ago: the deceleration was recorded across the population groups (i.e., rural, semi-urban, urban and metropolitan). Annual growth (Y-o-Y) in credit by private sector banks moderated significantly to 6.9% in September 2020 from 14.4% a year ago, whereas it increased marginally for public sector banks to 5.7% from 5.2% over the same period.

Meanwhile, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Shaktikanta Das on Thursday said the country's economy has recovered stronger than expected from the initial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, but there is a need to be watchful of demand sustainability after festivals and a possible reassessment of market expectations surrounding the vaccine.

Speaking at the annual day event of Foreign Exchange Dealers' Association of India (FEDAI), Das said there are downside risks to growth across the world and also in India. After witnessing a sharp contraction in the economy by 23.9% in Q1 and a multi-speed normalisation of activity in Q2, the Indian economy has exhibited stronger than expected pick-up in momentum of recovery, Das said.

Even as the growth outlook has improved, downside risks to growth continue due to recent surge in infections in advanced economies and parts of India, he added.

Das said regulatory reforms have moved the financial markets to the next trajectory amid the pandemic and affirmed RBI's commitment to ensure an orderly conduct in the markets. He also said that India will continue to approach capital account convertibility as a process, rather than as an event within a broad macroeconomic framework.

As a major milestone towards opening up of markets, banks in India have been permitted to deal in the offshore rupee derivative markets. Banks have also been permitted to undertake foreign exchange transactions beyond the usual onshore market hours, thus fostering real time market activity. In a complementary measure, exchanges and banking units in the GIFT City have been permitted to undertake over the counter (OTC) and exchange traded rupee derivatives.

Stocks in Spotlight:

Siemens jumped 10.86%. The company reported 0.9% decline in standalone net profit to Rs 327.60 crore on a 9.2% fall in net sales to Rs 3,422.40 crore in Q4 September 2020 over Q4 September 2019. Profit before tax in the fourth quarter stood at Rs 440 crore, down by 10.5% from Rs 491.40 crore in the same period last year.

For the quarter July-September of financial year 2020, new orders from continuing operations grew by 8.7% over the prior year and stands at Rs 3,220 crore. The company has a strong order backlog of over one year's revenue, partially on account of the period of lockdown in the country, which resulted in reduced revenues, it added.

Glenmark Pharmaceuticals rose 0.5%. The drug maker has been listed in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI), under the category of emerging markets for the third consecutive year in a row. It is among only 11 companies from India and one of the two companies from the pharmaceutical sector to be listed in the DJSI Emerging Markets Index this year.

Laurus Labs rallied 2.79% after the company said it signed a definitive agreement to acquire a majority stake in Richcore Lifesciences. The current promoters of Richcore led by Subramani Ramachandrappa will continue as promoters of Richcore and will be responsible for its management and operations. The acquisition marks Laurus Labs' entry into the broader biologics and biotechnology segments, providing the company access to its high growth areas, globally and in India.

Union Bank of India gained 2.06% after the bank announced plans to raise the equity capital upto Rs 6,800 crore during the FY 2020-21. The public sector bank said it will raise funds through various modes such as public issue (i.e. follow-on public offer) and/or rights issue and/or private placements, including qualified institutions placement and/or preferential allotment to the Government of India and/or other institutions and/or through any other modes subject to approval of the Government of India and other regulatory authorities.

Tanla Platforms hit an upper circuit of 5% at Rs 583.65 after Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Vantage Equity Fund bought stake in the company via bulk deals on Wednesday (25 November 2020). As per the bulk data on the BSE, MIT purchased 9.85 lakh shares, or 0.72% equity, of Tanla Platforms while Vantage Equity Fund bought 6.85 lakh shares, 0.5% equity, of the company. Banyan Investments sold 16.70 lakh shares, or 1.23% equity. All three deals were struck at an average price of Rs 524.30 per share.

Future Consumer hit a lower circuit of 5% at 8.66 after Rajnikant Sabnavis resigned as the chief executive officer (CEO) of the company, effective from 27 November 2020. Consequently, Sabnavis shall also cease to be key managerial personnel of the company, the company disclosed after market hours yesterday, 25 November 2020.

Global Markets:

Most European indices declined while Asian stocks rose across the board on Thursday as investors reacted to minutes released overnight from the U. S. Federal Reserve's November meeting. The Bank of Korea on Thursday held steady on its key policy rate at a record low of 0.5%.

In US, the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 index closed lower on Wednesday as mounting U. S. layoffs in the wake of new mandated lockdowns to contain surging COVID-19 infections dampened investor risk appetite. The Nasdaq Composite outperformed.

The summary of the Fed meeting from earlier this month indicated that U. S. central bank officials discussed ways of getting more money into the economy, which is still recovering from the coronavirus pandemic.

The number of Americans filing first-time claims for jobless benefits increased further last week. Initial claims for state unemployment benefits totaled a seasonally adjusted 778,000 for the week ended 21 November 2020, compared to 748,000 in the prior week, the Labor Department said on Wednesday.

U. S. financial markets will be closed on Thursday for the Thanksgiving holiday and U. S. bonds and stocks will trade on a partial schedule on Friday.

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(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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First Published: Thu, November 26 2020. 15:34 IST
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