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Indian Markets Inch Upwards
Mon, 22 Feb 11:30 am

After opening the day flat, the Indian Markets have registered some gains and are presently trading on a positive note. Most sectoral indices are trading in the green with telecom and pharma stocks leading the gains.

The BSE Sensex is trading up 54 points (up 0.2%) and the NSE Nifty is trading up 15 points (up 0.2%). The BSE Mid Cap index is trading up by 0.6% while the BSE Small Cap index is trading up 0.5%. The rupee is trading at 68.56 to the US$.

PSU banking stocks are trading on a mixed note with Central Bank leading the gains and Punjab & Sind Bank leading the losses. As per an economic daily, IDBI Bank is planning to raise up to Rs 15 billion by selling stake to Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) by preferential issuance of shares to the insurer.

For this, the board has approved the proposal for preferential issue of capital to LIC, aggregating up to Rs 15 billion (inclusive of premium amount) subject to Government of India's approval.

On a separate note, the bank has also got board approval for raising up to US$ 500 million through tier I bonds. The issuance of bonds is aimed at enhancing the tier 1 capital of the bank.

IDBI Bank is one of India's largest commercial banks. During the third quarter ended December 2015, the bank reported a net loss of Rs 21 billion as against a net profit of Rs 1 billion in the corresponding period a year ago. This was witnessed as provisions for bad loans for the bank almost quadrupled during the quarter. The bank's provisions for the quarter rose to Rs 37 billion from Rs 9 billion in the same period a year ago.

The bloating bad loans and the provisioning for the same have kept the public sector lenders (PSUs) in dire need of capital to meet not just incremental credit demand but also Basel-III norms. To find a way through this, many PSUs have been raising capital from the bond market through tier-I and tier-II bonds. Resultantly, bond issuances have risen since October during this fiscal (subscription required). Private agencies such as ICRA and CARE Ratings have estimated that banks need Rs 1.8 trillion in Tier-I capital, out of which Rs 700 billion will be through government infusion.

It should be noted that the government of India (GoI) holds 76.5% stake in the bank and has demonstrated continued support to the bank through equity infusions at regular intervals with the recent equity infusion of Rs 22 billion done on December 29, 2015.

Presently the scrip of IDBI Bank is trading up by 1.4%.

Most energy stocks are trading in the green with Chennai Petroleum and Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited (HPCL) witnessing maximum buying interest. As per a leading financial daily, the Centre's green panel has given a clearance to the state-owned Oil & Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) for its Rs 17.5 billion project in Gujarat's Cambay Basin. The project involves drilling of 406 development wells in oil fields and the proposed drilling is expected to be undertaken at the company's Ahmedabad asset located in Gandhinagar, Ahmedabad, and Kheda districts.

This asset currently produces 3,725 tonnes per day crude oil and 5.8 lakh cubic meters of natural gas on a daily basis. The cost for the ONGC's drilling project is estimated at Rs 17.5 billion and the depth of the drilling wells will be in the range of 800 - 2,000 meters.

ONGC is India's largest oil and gas exploration and production company. It produces around 70% of India's crude oil (equivalent to around 25% of the country's total demand) and around 60% of its natural gas. With a market capitalisation of over Rs 2 trillion, it is one of India's most valuable publicly-traded companies. We believe that the above clearance will increase production levels and improve the fundamentals of the company.

Presently the stock of ONGC is trading higher by 0.3%.

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Mar 23, 2018 (Close)