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Indian Markets Inch Upwards
Thu, 4 Feb 01:30 pm

After opening the day on a positive note, the Indian indices continued to rise. Sectoral indices are trading on a positive note with stocks from the metal and capital goods sectors leading the gains.

The BSE Sensex is trading up 243 points (up 1%) and the NSE Nifty is trading up 82 points (up 1.1%). The BSE Mid Cap index is trading up 0.8% while the BSE Small Cap index is trading up by 0.6%. Gold prices, per 10 grams, are trading at Rs 27,182 levels. Silver price, per kilogram is trading at Rs 35,605 levels. Crude oil is trading at Rs 2,241 per barrel. The rupee is trading at 67.83 to the US$.

Banking stocks are trading on a positive note with Bank of Baroda and Oriental Bank leading the gains. As per a leading financial daily, the government is going to infuse about Rs 50 billion capital in the public sector banks in the current fiscal. The initiative is aimed at strengthening the balance sheets of the banks. Funds will be infused after Parliament approves third Supplementary Demand for Grants in the upcoming Budget session.

As per the blueprint, PSU banks will get Rs 250 billion this fiscal and also in the next fiscal. Besides that, Rs 100 billion each would be infused in 2017-18 and 2018-19. Of the Rs 250 billion earmarked for 2015-16, the government has pumped in about Rs 200 billion in 13 public sector banks so far.

It is to be noted that the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has been pushing banks to clean up balance sheets and make adequate provision for bad loans. In the quarterly performance review meeting of public sector banks (PSBs) held in November 2015, the finance ministry had pointed out that six banks require special focus to arrest the growth in bad loans. These were Bank of India, IDBI, Indian Overseas Bank, Bank of Maharashtra, UCO Bank and United Bank of India. Further, the finance ministry has estimated that state-run banks will require Rs 1,800 billion of additional capital in the next four financial years. Of this Rs 1,100 billion will have to be raised from the market by the lenders.

Most of the stocks in the telecom space are trading on a positive note with Himachal Futuristic and Tata Teleservices leading the gains. According to a report by networking giant Cisco, the number of mobile users in India is projected to grow at a CAGR of 4.4% to 990.2 million, covering about 71% of the country's population, by 2020. Also, the report stated that mobile data traffic generated is forecast to grow 12-fold to reach 1.7 Exabytes per month by 2020. The same would be driven by availability of cheaper smartphones and affordable data tariffs. The number of mobile users, last year, was recorded at 798.4 million. Further, mobile data traffic was about 148.9 Petabytes per month in 2015.

Further, the report stated that 4G connections in India are expected to grow at a CAGR of 144% between 2015-2020. This will account for 26.2% of the total mobile connections by 2020. 3G connections are forecast to be 52.6% of the total mobile connections by 2020, compared to 15.7% in 2015.

Lastly, the report stated that future mobile innovations in cellular like 5G and Wi-Fi solutions will be needed to further address new scale requirements, security concerns, and user demands.

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