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Indian stock markets extend losses
Thu, 16 Feb 11:30 am

Indian stock markets continued to trade in the red after opening the day's proceedings on a weak note. All sectoral indices were trading in the green except for power, realty and capital goods stocks.

The BSE-Sensex is trading down by 130 points and NSE-Nifty is trading down by 42 points. However, BSE Mid cap and BSE Small cap indices are trading strong by 0.1% and 0.5% respectively. The rupee is trading at 49.40 to the US dollar.

PSU stocks are trading strong led by NMDC Ltd and Bharat Heavy Electricals (BHEL). As per a leading daily, the government will be offloading 5% stake in Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Ltd. (ONGC). The stake will be sold to institutional investors and is aimed at improving the financial position of the government. This would help the government in mopping up Rs 120 bn. However, divestment in BHEL is expected only in the next year. We may recollect here that the divestment target for this fiscal had been set at Rs 400 bn. So far, it has collected only Rs 11 bn by selling stake in Power Finance Corporation (PFC). A few stake sale proposals have been put on hold as of now due to unfavourable market conditions. These include follow-on-issues by Steel Authority of India (SAIL), Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) and MMTC.

Mining stocks are trading strong led by NMDC and Gujarat NRE Coke. As per a leading daily, the Prime Minister of India has instructed Coal India to ensure supplies for 20 years to 50,000 megawatt power plants. These are the plants that are to be commissioned by 2015. In the event of Coal India failing to supply lesser than 80% of this, it will face penalty and if it is able to supply more than 90%, it will get incentives. As per the Prime Minister, coal supply issue in the power sector has to be dealt with immediately. He would now concentrate on the other medium and long term problems faced by the sector. This move is likely to bring back the confidence of bankers who were unwilling to fund power companies for want of assured fuel supply.

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Feb 22, 2018 (Close)