The global as well as the Indian markets are set for fluctuations as the results of the US presidential elections start to trickle in. Wall Street’s main indexes jumped overnight as investors bet that one of the country’s most divisive presidential races could end with a clear victory for Democratic nominee Joe Biden and a swift deal on more fiscal stimulus.
Biden has held a strong lead in national polls, but President Donald Trump is close enough in swing states possibly to gain the 270 Electoral College votes needed to retain the presidency.
According to Bloomberg news agency, Biden was racing ahead in 119 electoral seats while Republican Donald Trump was leading in 92 seats as of 7:30 am The two contenders are neck and neck in vital Florida and other competitive battleground states, including Georgia and Ohio, still up in the air.
On Wall Street, the Dow rose 2 per cent, the S&P 500 gained 1.78 per cent and the Nasdaq added 1.85 per cent.
Stocks in Asia, meanwhile, mere mixed in Wednesday's early deals with Japan's Nikkei rising 1.4 per cent and Kospi gaining 0.24 per cent. On the other hand, Australia's ASX 200 dipped 1 per cent while Hong Kong's main index was also down half a per cent.
In commodities, oil prices gained about 2 per cent overnight, with Brent crude futures settling 74 cents higher at $39.71 a barrel.
SGX Nifty, meanwhile, dipped 24 points at 11,802 levels at 7:30 AM, indicating a flat to negative start for the Indian indices today.
Apart from these, investors may choose to focus on stock-specific developments and corporate results.
Adani Ports yesterday reported a 31.57 per cent year-on-year increase in its consolidated profit to Rs 1,393.69 crore for the September quarter of FY21. Meanwhile, PVR posted a consolidated loss at Rs 184 crore for the quarter. The stocks of both these companies will react today.
A total of 91 companies including State Bank of India, Lupin, and Adani Enterprises, are scheduled to announce their quarterly results today.
Analysts remain divided on SBI's bottom-line figures for the quarter which may come in anywhere between Rs 2,172 crore and Rs 4,676 crore. That said, slower growth in net interest income, muted loan growth, an unchanged net interest margin, and decline in operating profit may mark the quarter.
On the Covid front, India continues to report a decline in the number of daily fresh Covid-19 cases. Nonetheless, the total caseload has now exceeded the 83-lakh mark while death toll has mounted to 1.23 lakh.
And now, some other top news.
Economic Affairs Secretary Tarun Bajaj yesterday said that Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will soon announce the next set of stimulus package to boost the economy.
And, Credit Suisse has announced major changes to its sectoral preferences. The brokerage has gone neutral on information technology, from a strong overweight, citing high valuations and a relatively muted growth forecast. It has also cut its stance on health care from Overweight to underweight.
On the other hand, it has turned bullish on banking stocks, which have been laggards this year.