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GST bill impasse daunts markets, Sensex down 259 points



Dimmed prospects of key economic legislations getting the parliamentary nod in the winter session, coupled with a slowdown in the Chinese economy and falling commodity prices led to a barometer index provisionally closing 259 points down on Wednesday.

Initially, too, both bellwether indices of the Indian equity markets opened on a negative note following their Asian peers.

Moreover, domestic cues like the parliament logjam which has reduced the chances of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) bill getting passed during the winter session, eroded investors’ confidence.

Should the bill not secure passage in this session, it will miss its intended roll-out date of April 1, next year.

Foreign investors continued selling of equities in the Indian markets ahead of a likely US rate hike — further depressing investors — while the domestic upcoming macro-economic data points, slated to be released on Friday, flared volatility.

In addition, oil and gas and energy companies stocks stayed on their downward trajectory due to a dip in global crude oil prices.

Besides equities, the Indian rupee, too, remained under pressure.

The barometer 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) shed 259 points or 1.02 percent during the day’s trade.

Similarly, the wider 50-scrip Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) closed in the red. It provisionally closed lower by 84.25 points or 1.09 percent at 7,617.45 points.

The Sensex of the S&P Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), which opened at 25,299.34 points, provisionally closed at 25,051.71 points (at 3.30 p.m.) — down 258.62 points or 1.02 percent from the previous day’s close at 25,310.33 points.

The Sensex touched a high of 25,316.95 points and a low of 25,012.22 points during the intra-day trade.

Market observers said the investors’ sentiments were subdued due to the logjam in parliament and absence of fresh triggers.

“Markets continued on their downward trajectory. They were dragged lower by parliament’s logjam, fall in global commodity prices and upcoming macro economic data which are slated to be released on Friday,” Anand James, co-head, technical research desk with Geojit BNP Paribas Financial Services said.

“The negative news for the information technology (IT) industry coming from the US where it has been proposed to cap the H1B visas adversely impacted investors risk taking appetite.”

Wefornews Bureau


Amazon in talks to buy stake in Bharti Airtel

In just around a month, RIL has sold over 17 per cent stake in Jio Platforms for a combined Rs 78,562 crore.





New Delhi, June 4 : E-commerce giant Amazon is in talks to purchase a stake worth at least $2 billion in telecom major Bharti Airtel.

According to reports, the Jeff Bezos-led Amazon would acquire around 5 per cent stake based on the current market value of India”s third largest telecom company in terms of subscribers.

Describing the reports as speculations, an Amazon spokesperson said: “We don”t comment on speculation about what we may or may not do in future.”

An Airtel spokesperson said: “We routinely work with all digital and OTT players and have deep engagement with them to bring their products, content and services for our wide customer base. Beyond that there is no other activity to report.”

Reports suggested that the talks are in initial stages currently. The talks come at atime when Jio Platforms has attracted several investors in the past one month led by Facebook which took up around 10 per cent stake.

In just around a month, RIL has sold over 17 per cent stake in Jio Platforms for a combined Rs 78,562 crore.

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Lockdown period helped us grow business, say digital marketers

India”s Internet consumption rose by 13-14 per cent since the nationwide lockdown was put in place.





New Delhi, June 4 : During the time of Covid-19 pandemic when most of enterprises have cut down on traditional marketing and publicity spend, the scope of digital marketing has increased manifold as target audiences are home in social distancing times and remaining online for more hours has become the new normal, some leading digital marketers said on Thursday.

While lockdown has done serious damage to a lot of businesses, there are some for whom it has become an opportunity and digital marketing agencies are one of them.

“With the world being connected via Internet, things were gung-ho in the digital marketing world using the right digital strategies to reach out to people,” said Kapil Jain, Founder of Graphitto, a Mumbai-based digital agency.

“For the survival of business operations, we are considering each and every step about our future business operations, including burn-rate, debts servicing cost, sales forecasts, supply-chain challenges, team headcount reduction, and optimizing capital spending,” Jain added.

According to Sudhanshu Kumar, MD of Digital Sukoon digital marketing agency, they are in a relatively better position to withstand the lockdown impact.

“We used the time really well and understood the fact that lockdown is going to increase consumption of data in India and we had to put our clients where the audience was. We managed to bridge the gap with all the hard work from our teams while adhering to the norms,” said Kumar.

Digital Sukoon is handling digital promotion for Prakash Jha Productions, Rohit Shetty Pictures, Pooja Entertainment and Panorama Studios, among others, along with artists and popular influencers.

Digital Sukoon is among few firms that has retained entire staff and helped them in need.

“These are an unprecedented time for everyone and we at Digital Sukoon would love to help out people as much as we possibly can,” said Kumar.

India”s Internet consumption rose by 13-14 per cent since the nationwide lockdown was put in place.

According to Anoop Mishra, Co-founder of Publicity Mantra, a strategic marketing and brand communication agency, usually an average company invests two-three per cent of their total marketing budget on digital platforms but since online time per user has increased, companies can pay more attention to it and this is going to be a good opportunity for digital marketers.

“If we talk about Internet users and consumers, we are going to experience more ad floats and digital agencies reaching out to more customers seamlessly,” said Mishra who has also launched to support and guide the early startups in India.


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Why was Rajiv Bajaj asked not to speak to Rahul Gandhi

“The first reaction (of the person who discouraged Bajaj from speaking) was no no. Don’t do that. This can get you into trouble.”



Rajiv Bajaj

Today (June 4), Industrialist Rajiv Bajaj was in conversation with Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, which is part of the on-going series organised by Gandhi to engage with economists and businesses. But during the conversation, Bajaj informed the audience that someone he knows advised Bajaj not to talk to Gandhi over the fear of backlash from the present BJP-led government.

Citing that incident, Bajaj said, “The first reaction (of the person who discouraged Bajaj from speaking) was no no. Don’t do that. This can get you into trouble.” But Bajaj stressed why should that be of concern considering, he has spoken to many media houses and given more harsh messages to the government.

Linking the freedom of expression with business, he said, businesses cannot function under fear. He added that investments will dry up — fear will stop investors from coming into the country. For businesses to invest in the country, there is a need to build business confidence.

He added due to irregularities in the part of the business, they refuse to speak up as they are afraid of the skeleton in the closet. Then there are some businesses who will never speak over the fear of backlash and that fear needs to eliminated as that is not good for the economy, Bajaj reiterated.

Rajiv Bajaj’s father, Rahul Bajaj, has been very vocal about the issues business have faced in the country. In the past, Rahul Bajaj had spoken about the issues faced by the businesses to Amit Shah.

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