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Indian Indices Continue Uptrend, Jet Airways in Focus and Other Top Stocks in Action Today
Tue, 19 Mar Pre-Open | Monish Vora, TM Team

On Monday, share markets in India opened on a positive note and ended the day in green after a volatile day of trading.

The BSE Sensex closed higher by points to end the day above the 38,000 point mark at 38,095. While the broader NSE Nifty ended the day up by 35 points to end at 11,462.

Among BSE sectoral indices, realty stocks rose the most by 2.5%, followed by energy stocks at 1.7%. Bajaj Finance and Power Grid Corp. were among the top gainers.

Top Stocks in Action Today

L&T share price is likely to be in focus as the company is likely to buy 20.4% stake held by Cafe Coffee Day (CCD) founder V.G. Siddhartha, followed by an open offer to buy an additional 31% stake in the company.

L&T has agreed to pay Rs 981 per share to buy the entire stake held by Siddhartha and two of his CCD firms.

Maruti Suzuki share price will be in focus today on reports of production cut due to slower demand.

As per an article in The Economic Times, Maruti is estimated to have cut production by 26.8% to about 126,000 units.

The Latest on the Jet Airways Saga

Jet Airways is in focus today company is set to delay payment on interest on bonds due on March 19.

The stock was also in focus as the company founder and Chairman Naresh Goyal's self-imposed deadline to announce an update on the resolution plan got over yesterday.

On March 1, Goyal had written to the airline's pilots, appealing for continued support and assured them that the senior management will provide an update on the resolution plan by March 18.

Lenders to the company have also told Jet's strategic partner Eithad Airways that if the company is unable to accept the terms of revive the airline, it should exit so that a new investor can be bought in.

Note that reports had also suggested that the debt-laden airline could be staring at another default of US$ 109 million, which is to be paid by March 28 to the HSBC Bank Middle East as the second tranche of the US$ 140-million loan it had taken in 2014 and for which Etihad stood guarantor.

On March 11, Jet Airways defaulted on its external commercial borrowings (ECBs) of US$ 31 million, payable to HSBC and guaranteed by Etihad Airways.

In a letter to HSBC on March 11, the domestic airline had said it is going through a severe liquidity crunch and is working on a bank-led resolution plan for its revival.

Selling pressure is also seen on reports that Etihad Airways is unlikely to agree with the provisional debt resolution plan proposed by the lenders.

As per an article in a leading financial daily, a meeting of the board of Etihad in Abu Dhabi last Tuesday remained inconclusive, with several members expressing reservations about the terms proposed by the lenders that included adding two nominee directors from the promoter group of Jet Airways, led by founder Naresh Goyal.

As per the provisional pact, a 'new investor' was to inject between Rs 16 billion to Rs 19 billion for about 20% in Jet Airways and the Goyal-led promoter group's stake was to fall to 17.1%. At present, Etihad holds 24% stake in Jet, while promoter Goyal and his family own a controlling 51% stake.

Etihad's board is expected to meet again to discuss the revised terms.

An early resolution to the financial woes is crucial for crisis-hit Jet Airways as 61 of its 116 aircraft are currently grounded by lessors due to non-payment of lease rentals. It has also delayed salaries to pilots and interest payments on its debt.

Jet Airways had tried to lease or sell some of its owned aircraft to raise money that could help pare its over Rs 80 billion debt. But the plans, including a wet leasing deal with TruJet for its ATRs, got stuck.

Aircraft lessors have been supportive of the company's efforts in this regard. The company is also making all efforts to minimize disruption to its network due to the above and is proactively informing and re-accommodating its affected guests.

How all this pans out remains to be seen. Meanwhile, we will keep you updated on all the developments from this space.

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