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Sensex, Nifty gallop on bargain buying, positive global cues

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The domestic market ended the volatile session with robust gains on Tuesday, amid recovery in global stock markets. Global stock markets reacted positively to the US Federal Reserve's open-ended asset purchase program on Monday, as well as other measures to keep the market functioning.

The S&P BSE Sensex jumped 692.79 points or 2.67% at 26,674.03. The Nifty 50 index climbed 190.80 points or 2.51% at 7,801.05.

In the broader market, the BSE Mid-Cap index rose 1.56% and the BSE Small-Cap index gained 0.05%.

The market breadth was negative. On the BSE, 923 shares rose and 1337 shares fell. A total of 166 shares were unchanged.

FM Nirmala Sitharaman Speech:

Addressing the media on Tuesday, the Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said "work is going on and we are very close to coming up with an economic package that will be announced sooner rather than later."

FM Nirmala Sitharaman announced 8-point economic relief, which include income tax compliance, GST compliance, customs compliance, MCA compliance, IBC compliance, fisheries compliance, bank-related compliance and commerce-related compliance.

The last date for the income tax return for the financial year 18-19 is extended to 30 June 2020. For delayed payments, interest rate has been reduced from 12% to 9%, the finance minister said. Aadhar-PAN linking date and Vivad Se Vishwas Scheme is postponed from April 1 to June 30, no additional 10% payment. The last date for March, April, May 2020 GST returns and Composition returns is extended to 30 June 2020.

FM relaxed mandatory requirement of holding board meetings by a period of 60 days, this relaxation is for the next two quarters. Providing relief for imports/exporters, FM said customs clearance is now an essential service, till 30 June 2020. During this period of lockdown, customs clearance will be operational 24x7.

For newly incorporated companies, FM announced additional time of 6 more months to file declaration for commencement of business. For a director in any company, less than minimum residency of 182 days, shall now not be treated as a violation, FM said.

Minister of State for Finance and Corporate Affairs, Anurag Thakur, said that Insolvency & Bankruptcy Code default limit has been increased from Rs 1 lakh to Rs 1 crore.

FM further added that debit card holders who withdraw cash from any bank's ATM can do it free of charge for the next 3 months.

FM said that delay of upto 1 month in arrival of consignment for fisheries will be overlooked.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will address the nation on vital aspects relating to the menace of COVID-19 at 8 pm today, 24 March 2020.

Numbers to Watch:

The yield on 10-year benchmark federal paper fell to 6.311% at 16:55 IST compared with 6.389% at close in the previous trading session.

In the foreign exchange market, the rupee edged higher against the dollar. The partially convertible rupee was hovering at 75.94, compared with its close of 76.20 during the previous trading session.

In the commodities market, Brent crude for May 2020 settlement rose $1.01 at $28.04 a barrel. The contract rose 5 cents or 0.19% to settle at $27.03 a barrel during the previous trading session.

Foreign Markets:

European and Asian stocks rose across the board on Tuesday after the US Federal Reserve launched unlimited bond buying and other fresh steps and the US Congress appeared closer to a deal on a massive stimulus package to boost the world's largest economy hammered by the coronavirus.

On Monday, the US Fed pledged that it will run an open-ended asset purchase program amid the global coronavirus outbreak. Fed said the program will run in the "amounts needed to support smooth market functioning and effective transmission of monetary policy to broader financial conditions and the economy." The pledge is a new chapter in the Fed's "money printing" as it commits to keep expanding its balance sheet as necessary, rather than a commitment to a set amount.

In US, stocks booked sharp losses on Monday as the rapidly rising number of coronavirus cases across the nation overshadowed the Federal Reserve's pledge to buy unlimited bonds and bolster emergency lending facilities to support the flow of credit into the economy.

Buzzing Index:

The Nifty FMCG index rose 3.24% to 23,935.30. The index slumped 10.60% on Monday.

Among the index constituents, Britannia Industries (up 10.74%), GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare (up 8.39%), Nestle India (up 5.43%), Godrej Consumer Products (up 3.29%), Marico (up 2.78%) and Colgate Palmolive (India) (up 1.76%) advanced.

Hindustan Unilever jumped 8.34%. HUL announced that it has signed an agreement with Glenmark Pharmaceuticals to acquire its intimate hygiene brand VWash. The deal includes the acquisition of intellectual property rights including trademarks, design and know-how related to the VWash brand. The consideration has been split into two parts involving an upfront cash payment upon closing of the deal and a deferred consideration over the next three years. The transaction is subject to fulfilment of certain conditions, and both parties would be working together to complete this in the next few months. Glenmark will continue to manage the business until the transaction is completed, and will also continue to manufacture for HUL for an agreed period of time.

The Nifty Pharma index rose 2.78% to 6,611.05. The index slumped 7.47% on Monday.

Aurobindo Pharma (up 10.99%), Strides Pharma Science (up 8.76%), Dr. Reddy's Laboratories (up 3.5%), Sun Pharmaceutical Industries (up 3.41%) and Divi's Laboratories (up 3.27%) surged.

Stocks in Spotlight:

IT major Infosys jumped 12.69% after the company said the US Securities & Exchange Commission has concluded its investigation on the whistle blower allegations. As previously disclosed, in connection with the audit committee's investigation into certain whistle blower complaints which concluded in January 2020, Infosys cooperated with an investigation by the United States Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) regarding the same matters.

Infosys said it received a notification from the SEC that it has concluded its investigation and the company does not anticipate any further action by the SEC on this matter. Infosys added that it has also responded to all the inquires received from the Indian regulatory authorities. The IT major said it will continue to cooperate with the authorities should there be any additional requests for information.

IndusInd Bank slumped 7.19% to Rs 312.35. The scrip tumbled 29.99% to hit the day's low at Rs 235.60. The bank announced the appointment of Sumant Kathpalia as the Managing Director (MD) & Chief Executive Officer (CEO) with effect from 24 March 2020, for three years. The bank said Romesh Sobti retired as MD & CEO of IndusInd Bank on 23 March 2020.

IRCTC fell 5% to Rs 858.50, extending its losing streak to seventh consecutive session. The outbreak of COVID-19 has made travellers reconsider going on vacation in this middle of a global pandemic, putting pressure on travel and tourism industry. The stock has tumbled 30% in seven trading sessions from its previous closing high of Rs 1228.05 hit on 13 March 2020. To curb the coronavirus outbreak, Railway Minister, Piyush Goyal, on 22 March 2020 announced that all passenger train services on Indian Railways including premium trains, mail/express trains, Konkan Railway, etc will be cancelled till 31 March 2020.

Avenue Supermarts (DMart) fell 0.76% to Rs 1813.05. The company said that some of its stores have remained closed for operations on certain days based on the directive by the local authorities. It added that it is currently selling only daily use essential items such as grocery and FMCG products at all its stores. The firm said it continues to receive regular supply of goods from all its suppliers and distributors.

Jubilant Foodworks rose 1.18%. The company announced that it has suspended dine-in facility across all Domino's Pizza restaurants. The company said this is in view of the emergent situation due to coronavirus (COVID-19). The company further said that it will mitigate the impact and promote the takeaway and delivery channels but there will be an adverse impact on the revenue of the company.

SpiceJet fell 3.28%. InterGlobe Aviation jumped 8.12%. India suspended all domestic flights, effective midnight 24 March 2020, to contain the spread of COVID-19 pandemic that has claimed thousands of lives across the world. In a statement, the Ministry of Civil Aviation said: The operations of domestic schedule commercial airlines shall cease operations with effective from the mid night 23.59 IST hours on 24 March 2020. Airlines have to plan operations so as to land at their destination before 2359 hours on 24 March 2020. The restrictions shall not apply to solely cargo carrying flights.

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

First Published: Tue, March 24 2020. 17:21 IST