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Markets open strong ahead of budget
Sat, 28 Feb 09:30 am

The major Asian stock markets were closed today on account of Saturday. The Indian markets have, however, opened on a positive note ahead of budget. All of the sectoral indices are trading in the green with the capital goods and realty stocks leading the pack of gainers.

BSE-Sensex is currently trading up by about 225 points (up 0.77%), while the NSE-Nifty is higher by about 64 points (up 0.72%). Both BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap indices have also opened the day in green, up by 0.71% and 0.62% respectively.

In the budget that is expected to be tabled in the parliament today the Finance Minister (FM) is expected to re-introduce infrastructure bonds that debuted in 2010. Apart from it, there are chances that the medical reimbursement limit will be raised to Rs 50,000 from an existing ceiling of Rs 15,000. We reckon re-introduction of infra bonds could be a good move considering government's renewed focus on investments. It shall help government mobilize money for long term as such bonds have lock in for a certain time period. Further, rise in medical limit is expected to benefit the aam aadmi as medical costs have sky rocketed in recent years.

PSU banking stocks have opened the day on a strong note. Indian bank and Vijaya bank are leading the pack of gainers. During many budgets in the past, government was kind enough to extend support by announcing recapitalization measures for PSU banks. And while we are yet to see what the government shall do in this budget, industry has high hopes to say the least. The ED of Punjab National Bank expects FM to allocate Rs 200-300 bn in order recapitalize PSU banks. However, it remains to be seen if government will oblige this time as recapitalization of inefficient PSUs is effectively a waste of tax payers money.

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