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Mid & Small Caps Surge
Mon, 1 Feb Closing

Indian equity markets had a rather volatile trading session today. The indices began the day's proceedings on a positive note and subsequent trading hours saw them oscillate to either side with the indices eventually closing the day in the red. While the BSE Sensex closed lower by 46 points, the NSE Nifty closed lower by 8 points. Meanwhile, both the S&P BSE Midcap (up 0.6%) and the S&P BSE Smallcap (up 0.3%) indices bucked this trend and closed above the dotted line. Maximum buying interest was seen in FMCG and metal stocks. Power and banking sector witnessed majority of the profit booking.

Asian markets closed mixed on Monday, with major indices in Australia, Japan and South Korea extending gains after the Bank of Japan's surprise move on Friday to adopt negative rates sent stocks higher from Tokyo to New York. The Nikkei 225 gained 1.98%, while the Shanghai Composite & Hang Seng fell 1.78% and 0.45% respectively as a survey showed China's factory sector contracted for the sixth straight month. European markets are lower today with shares in France off the most. The CAC 40 is down 0.53% while London's FTSE 100 is off 0.33% and Germany's DAX is lower by 0.31%. The rupee was trading at 67.67 against the US$ in the afternoon session.

Shares of Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL) surged more than 2% today after the company announced that it bagged an order for setting up a supercritical thermal power project involving one unit of the country's highest rating 800 MW sets, in Tamil Nadu. Significantly, this will be the first ever 800 MW supercritical set based power plant in the state.

The main plant package contract for the 1x800 MW North Chennai Supercritical TPS Stage III, has been placed on BHEL by the Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation (TANGEDCO) and is valued at Rs 27.6 billion. Currently, the company has a significant share of 83% in TANGEDCO's cumulative coal-based generating capacity. This also includes two 600 MW sets commissioned in 2013 at North Chennai TPS, comprising in-house designed steam turbines, the first of their kind for both BHEL and the state of Tamil Nadu. Reportedly, the project shall be commissioned by August, 2019.

This comes at a time when the global economic crisis and the Chinese slowdown has dealt a heavy blow to demand for Indian engineering products. India's engineering exports to its neighboring countries, including China, have seen a massive fall in August 2015. Over the last eight years, the has seen numbers ranging from an output growth of 48% YoY in one year, to a contraction of 6% YoY in another. In our recent edition of The 5 Minute WrapUp Premium, we explain what factors to take into consideration when picking an engineering company stock (Subscription Required).

According to a leading financial daily, state owned gas utility GAIL India plans to import ethane from countries like the US for amounting to US$ 5 billion. The company plans to set up a petrochemical plant in Andhra Pradesh jointly with (HPCL).

Reportedly, GAIL is seeking supplies of up to 1.3 million tons per annum of ethane for 15 years on the east coast of India beginning 2022. GAIL-HPCL are planning the petrochemical project after their plans to team up with France's Total, Lakshmi N Mittal Group and for a 15 million tons a year refinery-cum-petrochemical plant at Visakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh fell through.

GAIL will be the second company after Reliance Industries to plan import of ethane. Ethane is a component of natural gas found in abundance in the Marcellus shale and used for making root chemical for plastics, resins, adhesives, and synthetic products.

In other news, ONGC recently got environmental clearance for drilling 45 development wells and other related infrastructure involving a cost of over Rs 530 billion in the Krishna-Godavari basin in Andhra Pradesh. Reportedly, the proposed development drilling and subsequent development of fields would lead to production of 51.33 billion cubic meters of gas over a period of 16 years and 26.71 million cubic meters of oil in 12 years.

Oil & gas sector stocks finished the day on a mixed note with Gujarat gas Ltd and BPCL leading the losses. The combination of plunging crude oil and fears over the Chinese economy have been attributed to the stock market's decline in 2016. In this, the market decline has been the worst for small cap stocks (Subscription Required).

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Mar 20, 2018 (Close)