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Sensex Trades Firm; Infra Stocks Lead Gains
Wed, 29 Mar 01:30 pm

After opening the day on a positive note, share markets in India have continued the momentum and are trading above the dotted line. Apart from stocks in the oil and gas sector and stocks in the pharma sector, all sectoral indices are trading on a positive note. Stocks in the banking sector and stocks in the infra sector are leading the gains.

The BSE Sensex is trading up by 94 points (up 0.3%), and the NSE Nifty is trading up by 27 points (up 0.3%). Meanwhile, the BSE Mid Cap index is trading up by 0.3%, while the BSE Small Cap index is trading up by 0.5%. The rupee is trading at 64.95 to the US$.

In news from stocks in the infrastructure sector. Larsen & Toubro (L&T) share price is in focus today as the company's construction arm L&T Construction won orders worth Rs 24 billion in domestic and international markets.

L&T Construction announced that its power transmission and distribution business has secured repeat order of 400 kv transmission lines and sub-stations, 33 kv primary substations and related cabling on turnkey basis in the Middle East and Africa.

The company also won orders to build transmission lines at voltage levels of 765 kV and 400 kV across different states of India.

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In another development, the company also bagged a water project worth Rs 7 billion in a joint venture with Shriram EPC.

Recently, L&T construction procured a major design and build order worth Rs 29 billion to redevelop Mumbai's century-old BDD Chawls for Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority (MHADA).

The scope of work comprises of complete design and construction of twenty residential towers for rehabilitation, four high-rise towers for sale and one commercial development within a plot area of 16 acres.

The contract also includes MEP, finishes, onsite/offsite infrastructure, landscaping, demolition of existing structures and logistics involved in the rehabilitation of the current occupants, L&T Construction said in a statement.

At the time of writing, L&T share price was trading up by 0.9%.

Moving on to news from stocks in the banking sector. Shares of public sector banks (PSBs) were trading higher for the fifth straight trading session on the premise that the asset quality and bad loan issues and faced by them would largely be comprehended and quick resolutions to be bought about for them.

Promising a solution to the growing non-performing assets (NPA) problem in the next few days, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on March 24 said the resolution being worked out with the RBI will put enough pressure on borrowers to settle dues.

Bad Loan Inventory Bloats Up

Bad Loan Inventory Bloats Up

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) will likely find itself in the driver's seat in the war against bad debt - closely monitoring big-ticket restructuring and even getting to decide the cut to be taken by banks.

Among the individual stocks, State Bank of India (SBI) share price was up trading up by over 2.4%. The stock hit an intra-day high of Rs 289, equaling its 52-week high touched on November 11, 2016.

In a separate development, the country's largest lender SBI, said it will increase its stake in SBI Card to 74% by June end.

The stake will be increased by the first quarter of the next financial year, subject to regulatory approvals.

The board of SBI has already given approval for hike of the bank's stake in its two-credit card joint ventures with General Electric Company to 74%.

The bank has approval to infuse Rs 11.6 billion in the two JVs -- SBI Cards and Payment Services Pvt Ltd (SBICPSL) and GE Capital. Business Processes Management Services Ltd (GECBPMSL)-- through purchase of equity shares from GE Capital to increase the bank's stake in both the companies to 74%.

The American company seeks to exit SBI Cards.

SBI currently holds 60% in SBICPSL and 40% in GECBPMSL. The balance being held by GE Capital in both the ventures.

As per an agreement between SBI and GE Capital at the time of formation of SBI Cards, it was decided that whenever any party decides to exit the JV, the decision must be on the basis of mutual understanding.

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