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Share markets in India finished on a firm note as the Federal Reserve raised the benchmark interest rate by a quarter percentage point, but gave a more dovish outlook for future hikes. At the closing bell, the BSE Sensex stood higher by 188 points, while the NSE Nifty finished up by 69 points. Gains were largely seen in metal stocks & power stocks.
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SBI share price finished up by 0.6% after the bank received Board approval to raise Rs 150 billion to shore up its equity capital in the bank for next year. The Bank's board gave approval to raise the same by way of FPO / Rights Issue / ESPS / ESOS/ QIP / ADR / GDR and any other mode or a combination of these on March 15, 2017.
The Board also gave approval to infuse Rs 11.60 billion in its credit card joint venture - SBI Cards Payment Services and GE Capital Business Process Management Services. Moreover, SBI has already started the process to merge its five associate banks with itself from April 1, which would require it to raise funds.
Asian stock markets finished broadly higher today with shares in Hong Kong leading the region. The Hang Seng is up 2.08% while China's Shanghai Composite is up 0.84% and Japan's Nikkei 225 is up 0.07%. European markets are broadly higher today with shares in Germany leading the region. The DAX is up 1.09% while London's FTSE 100 is up 0.94% and France's CAC 40 is up 0.81%.
The rupee was trading at Rs 65.38 against the US$ in the afternoon session. Oil prices were trading at US$ 49.40 at the time of writing.
According to a leading financial daily, India's merchandise exports reported a double-digit growth of 17.48% to US$24490.27 million in February 2017 rising for the sixth month in a row. This is on the back of a jump in the value of shipments of engineering goods and petroleum products.
Also, the trade deficit widened to US$8896.30 million in February as against US$6573.25 million in February 2016. The trade deficit during the 11-month period stood at US$95285.38 million as against US$114317.99 million in the same period of last fiscal.
Non-petroleum and Non Gems & Jewellery exports in February 2017 were valued at US$18011.73 million against US$14990.68 million in February 2016, an increase of 20.15%. Imports during February 2017, increased by 21.76% to US$33386.57 million as compared to US$27418.98 million in February 2016.
However, Cumulative value of imports for the period April-February 2016-17 was US$340698.43 million as against US$353696.36 million, registering a negative growth of 3.67% over the same period last year.
Oil imports during February, 2017 were valued at US$7681.20 million which was 60.02% higher than oil imports valued at US$4800.20 million in the corresponding month last year. Oil imports during April-February, 2016-17 were valued at US$76743.86 million which was 1.76% lower than the oil imports of US$78121.86 million in the corresponding period last year.
Moving on to news from stocks in oil & gas sector. GAIL share price finished the trading day on an encouraging note (up 1%) after it was reported that the company is planning to invest Rs 17.5 billion in a bid to build a City Gas Distribution (CGD) network in Bhubaneswar and Cuttack.
Of total, Rs 10 billion would be spent on Bhubaneswar, while the remaining Rs 7.5 billion has been set aside for Cuttack. Gas distribution to households in the twin-city region is expected to be a reality by December 2019 or early 2020.
In the next five years, 150,000 vehicles are reportedly expected to convert to CNG. Under the CGD project, 24 CNG stations would come up in Bhubaneswar and 25 in Cuttack. GAIL eyes gas sales of 0.5 mmscmd (million metric standard cubic metre per day) and 0.25 mmscmd in Bhubaneswar and Cuttack respectively.
In another development, ONGC will invest over Rs 215 billion to develop India's deepest gas discovery by 2022-23, helping it more than double output from its prime KG basin block. The company had last year firmed up an investment of Rs 340.12 billion in bringing to production 10 oil and gas discoveries in its Bay of Bengal block KG-DWN-98/2 (KG-D5).
ONGC plans to drill nine wells on the discovery that lies in water depths of 2,400-3,200 metres and will produce a peak output of 19 million standard cubic metres per day.
ONGC share price finished the trading day up by 0.6% on the BSE.
Reliance Communications share price surged 3.8% in today's trade after the company obtained approval from capital markets regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) to spin-off and merge its wireless division with Aircel Ltd and Dishnet Wireless Ltd. The proposed merger, which is expected to create India's third-largest telecom operator by users on completion of the deal.
But the stock is now approaching the 500 level again. This is the strong resistance level we mentioned in an earlier note. The resistance comes from the 78.6% retracement level of the previous decline from Rs 575 to Rs 200. This level is also a horizontal resistance level (see chart below).
The stock dragged more than 7% after it found resistance from 500 level just a few days back.
It will be interesting to see if 500 will act as resistance yet again or if the stock can overcome it this time around.
Either way, this will create a big trend in the stock. To identify these big moves, you need a robust trading system. Apurva Sheth, research analyst, has come up with a new trading service, Peak Profit Alert, that is built on a solid proprietary trading system that has a potential to generate double and triple-digit returns. He calls this system as SCOREFASTTM.
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