Benchmark indices' stupendous three-day rally, wherein both Sensex and Nifty scaled fresh record highs, could come to a halt on Thursday amid weakness in the global markets. At 7.20 am, Nifty futures on Singapore Exchange traded 9 points lower at 14,820 indicating a flat-to-negative start for the Indian markets.
Meanwhile, volatility is likely on account of weekly expiry, Q3 numbers and stock-specific action in the market.
In the overnight session, US markets ended mixed with Dow and S&P500 extending their gains to the third day following a sharp rally in Alphabet shares post strong December quarter numbers. However, weakness in Amazon.com shares dragged Nasdaq lower.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.12%, the S&P 500 gained 0.10% and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 0.02%.
Meanwhile, in Asia, markets came under pressure as a mixed Wall Street session gave investors few immediate reasons to increase their risk positions following the recent social media-driven trading chaos.
The Australian S&P/ASX 200 index lost 0.34% during early trade and Japan’s Nikkei 225 fell 0.35%. South Korea's Kospi shed 1.03%.
In the oil markets, the crude prices continued their ascent after as OPEC+ said it will keep pushing to quickly clear the surplus left behind by the pandemic.
The OPEC+ panel made no mention of changing policy, which calls for most members to hold supply steady in February and top exporter Saudi Arabia to cut output voluntarily by 1 million barrels per day this month and next.
In other news, commenting on India's Budget 2021, global rating agency Moody's said the Union Budget focuses on higher capital expenditure, financial sector reforms and asset sales, which will help to stimulate growth and supply broad-based credit support but cautioned that the government's weak fiscal position is likely to remain a key credit challenge in the medium term.
The agency expects India's nominal GDP growth to rise close to 17 per cent in fiscal 2021, higher than 14.4 per cent pegged in the Union Budget 2021.
Now, a look at the stock-specific developments that are likely to sway the market today:
SBI, Hero MotoCorp, Adani Power, HPCL, NTPC, Tata Power, Godrej Properties and Zee Entertainment are among 105 firms set to post their December quarter numbers today.
Most analysts expect SBI's profit after tax to decline anywhere between 15 per cent and 58 per cent on a yearly basis during the quarter under review while they expect the PSU lender's loan book to grow by 7 per cent yearly and around 3 per cent quarterly.
Bharti Airtel posted a consolidated net profit of Rs 854 crore in the third quarter of December FY21, after six straight quarters of losses. It also reported the highest-ever consolidated quarterly revenue of Rs 26,518 crore, up 24.2 per cent year-on-year (YoY). The company's board also approved fundraising plans of up to Rs 7,500 crore.
Sebi barred Kishore Biyani and certain other promoters of Future Retail from the securities market for one year for indulging in insider trading in the shares of the company.
Prakash Chandra Bisht has resigned as the Chief Financial Officer of Jubilant FoodWorks w.e.f. February 15, 2021.
Berry Creek Investment and Gray Birch Investment on Wednesday sold more than 19 lakh shares of multiplex chain operator PVR that are worth over Rs 293 crore through open market transactions. In a separate transaction, 10 lakh shares of PVR were picked up by Societe Generale-ODI.
Lastly, an update on the primary market. The initial public offer of Brookfield India Real Estate Investment Trust was subscribed 15 per cent on the first day of subscription on Wednesday.