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Markets close flat ahead of key macro data release

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Mumbai, Nov 30 : Indian equity markets ended Monday’s trade flat as investors were anxious ahead of the release of key macro economic data and negative Chinese financial cues.

Initially, both the bellwether indices of the Indian equity markets opened on a firm note supported by hopes that the Goods and Services Tax (GST) bill will get passed in the winter session of parliament.

However, concerns over the weak Asian markets given the major fall at Chinese exchanges on Friday and a decline in the country’s industrial profits spooked investors here.

There were also concerns ahead of the release of the upcoming macro economic data like India’s July-September GDP (gross domestic product) and eight core industries (ECI) numbers.

The barometer 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) closed flat during the day’s trade.

The wider 50-scrip Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) ended marginally in the red. It ended lower by 7.45 points or 0.09 percent at 7,935.25 points.

The S&P BSE Sensex, which opened at 26,142.53 points, closed at 26,145.67 points — 17.47 points or 0.07 percent up from the previous day’s close at 26,128.20 points.

The Sensex touched a high of 26,231.06 points and a low of 26,089.13 points during the intra-day trade.

Market observers elaborated that the markets traded in a narrow range as investors were docked away ahead of the upcoming release of key macro economic data and the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) monetary policy review slated on Tuesday.

“Markets performed in a lackluster manner ahead of the release of GDP and ECI data. There was caution over Tuesday’s RBI monetary policy review and the commentary that the central bank will give in the backdrop of imminent US rate hike,” Anand James, co-head, technical research desk with Geojit BNP Paribas Financial Services, told IANS.

“However, there was a positive bias which was backed by the central government’s efforts to build consensus over the GST bill, so that it can be cleared in the winter session of parliament.”

Nitasha Shankar, vice president of research with YES Securities said: “Volumes remained thin indicating lack of participation before the RBI policy meet.”

“Broader markets outperformed as buying in the high beta names was seen. Market breadth continued to favour the bulls with 1,620 advances and 1,085 declines. Reality, media, bank and auto indices witnessed good gains, while pharma, FMCG and energy indices came under pressure.”

Sector-wise, during the intra-day trade so far, consumer durables, inforamtion technology (IT) and automobile indices gained, while healthcare, fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) and metal stocks came under selling pressure.

The S&P BSE consumer durables index augmented by 127.99 points, IT index gained by 115.79 points and automobile index was was higher by 84.64 points.

The S&P BSE healthcare index plunged by 67.77 points, FMCG index receded by 50.08 points and metal index declined by 25.03 points.

Major Sensex gainers during Monday’s trade were Infosys, up 2.08 percent at Rs.1,088.45; ICICI Bank, up 1.67 percent at Rs.274.10; Mahindra and Mahindra (M&M), up 1.41 percent at Rs.1,367.25; Tata Motors, up 1.39 percent at Rs.423.35; and Bajaj Auto, up 1.34 percent at Rs.2,481.55.

The major Sensex losers were Bharti Airtel, down 2.09 percent at Rs.334.50; Vedanta, down 1.96 percent at Rs.90.05; Coal India, down 1.65 percent at Rs.330.70; Lupin, down 1.31 percent at Rs.1,790.80; and Sun Pharma, down 1.26 percent at Rs.730.65.

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Centre allows movement of persons and goods across borders from June 1

The MHA emphasised that no state/UT shall stop the movement of any type of goods/cargo for cross land border under treaties with neighbouring states.

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Truckers

New Delhi, May 30 : The Centre on Saturday, while announcing the guidelines for phased re-opening of the lockdown, said that from June 1, there will be no restriction on inter-state and intra-state movement of persons and goods.

In an exit mode from the 68-day nationwide lockdown, the Centre said that restrictions will be limited to only containment zones up to June 30. Applicable from Monday, June 1, the fresh order issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) said, “There shall be no restriction on inter-state and intra-state movement of persons and goods. No separate permission/ approval/ e-permit will be required for such movements.”

The MHA emphasised that no state/UT shall stop the movement of any type of goods/cargo for cross land border under treaties with neighbouring states.

However, if a state/ Union Territory based on reasons of public health and its assessment of the situation proposes to regulate movement of persons, it will give wide publicity in advance regarding the restrictions to be placed on such movement, and the related procedures to be followed.

The MHA said, “Movement by passenger trains and Shramik Special trains; domestic passenger air travel; movement of Indian nationals stranded outside the country and of specified persons to travel abroad; evacuation of foreign nationals; and sign-on and sign-off of Indian seafarers will continue to be regulated as per the SOPs issued.”

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‘Unlock 1’: Hotel industry welcomes move, will follow health safety SoPs

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DELHI LOCKDOWN

New Delhi, May 31 : India’s hotel industry has welcomed the Centre’s norms under ‘Unlock 1, which allow them to re-commence operations.

These norms are part of the fifth phase of the nationwide lockdown which was announced on Saturday for the containment zones till June 30, providing relaxations for the hotel industry from June 8 onwards.

This phase relaxes many restrictions on businesses.

Hotel Association of India Vice President K.B. Kachru said: “The pandemic and consequent lockdowns have had disastrous impact on the hotel sector.”

“We welcome the government’s decision to allow restaurants, hotels and malls to open in areas outside the containment zones from June 8. We hope this landmark decision will pave the way for graded resurgence of the hotel industry,” Kachru said.

He urged the Centre to consider setting up of a Tourism COVID 19 Fund for en abling the tourism industry to meet its salary and working capital needs.

Major Industry player such as Ritesh Agarwal, Founder & Group CEO – OYO Hote ls & Homes said: “We welcome the government’s decision to reopen hotels. We are excit ed and prepared to host guests with the new sanitised stay experience.a

Similarly, Nakul Anand, Executive Director, ITC, and Chairman of the Federation of Associations in Indian Tourism & Hospitality (FAITH), thanked the Centre for reallowing the commencement of business operations of hotels, restaurants and other hospitality services under Unlock 1.

“We welcome the government’s decision to reopen hotels. We are excited and prepared to host guests with the new sanitised stay experience. At OYO, our topmost priorities are maintaining health, hygiene & well-being of our guests and staff. Right from our app to hotel teams, we are working to ensure proper sanitisation of hotels as well as maintaining social distancing with the guests. We are displaying a ‘Sanitised Stays’ tag for properties that clear background audit checks for sanitisation, hygiene, and protective equipment. We along with our asset partners, look forward to delivering a safe, secure and comfortable experience for our guests,” said Ritesh Agarwal, Founder and Group CEO, OYO Hotels & Homes.

On its part, Merrill Pereyra, Managing Director, Pizza Hut Indian Subcontinent, said: “This is a welcome announcement from the government and all our stores are fully prepared to serve the valued customers. All our stores are equipped to offer contactless dining wherein right from accessing the menu to making payments, the process will be digital.”

According to Ankur Bhatia, Executive Director, Bird Group: “We are already pushed to the wall. A little more extension of lockdown would have done irreversible economic damage. We welcome the government’s move to allow us to operate.”

In a statement, Zubin Saxena, Managing Director and Vice President, Operations, South Asia, Radisson Hotel Group, said: “We are looking forward to resuming operations within the government guidelines.

“Apart from hygiene, our go forward business model is concentrated on leveraging the synergies of our network which we believe will work in a sustainable manner to ensure business uplift overtime. We remain dedicated to exceeding guest expectations in the new era of hospitality that awaits us.”

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Yashwant Sinha criticises Modi over economy

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Yashwant Sinha

New Delhi: Former Finance Minister Yashwant Sinha, a strong critic of the Narendra Modi government made a satirical remark against Prime Minister over the decline in economic growth rate as GDP growth between Jan 2020-March 2020 is 3.1%, lowest in 11 years.

The former finance and external affairs minister took to Twitter to express his views as the BJP and its leaders celebrated the completion of first year rule of Modi 2.0

“The sharp decline in economic growth rate in the first year of Modi-2 is not because of any fault of this govt but because of Pt Jawaharlal Nehru. If he had not ruled India from 1947 to 1964 India today would be growing at double digit,” former Union Minister Yashwant Sinha tweeted.

“The growth figures of earlier quarters of the last fiscal had to be revised downwards because of the lockdown imposed on March 25. The government cannot be blamed for this. I am warning all critics in advance,” he added.

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