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Sensex Maintains the Momentum; Tata Steel Leads the Gainers
Tue, 18 Oct 11:30 am

After opening the day on a positive note, the Indian share markets have continued to trade in the green. Sectoral indices are trading on a positive note with metal sector stocks and realty sector stocks witnessing maximum buying interest.

The BSE Sensex is trading up 239 points (up 0.9%) and the NSE Nifty is trading up 70 points (up 0.8%). The BSE Mid Cap index is trading up by 1%, while the BSE Small Cap index is trading up by 0.9%. The rupee is trading at 66.73 to the US$.

As per a leading financial daily, the Centre is likely to propose a four-tier tax structure under the Goods and Services Tax (GST). This would come with a peak slab of 26%. Reportedly, almost 20-25% of all taxable goods, including those consumed by the middle class, could come under the peak rate.

The idea behind the above proposal is to arrive at a common ground with the states that are concerned over revenue loss.

The above proposal will be discussed in the 3-day GST Council meet that begins today. A discussion paper in this meeting is believed to have proposed a standard rate of 18%. While the states are pitching for a standard rate of 22%, the Centre has pressed for one of 18%.

The above meet will be the third for the GST Council since its incorporation in September. The formation of GST Council marks as a step forward in the implementation process of GST after President Pranab Mukherjee gave his assent to the Constitution Amendment Bill on Goods and Services Tax (GST). This, along with the bill ratified by more than 50% of the state assemblies, has made GST a law. To know more about GST, please read Vivek Kaul's report - GST & You: What the Media DID NOT TELL YOU About the GST.

One must note that the government is keen to implement the GST regime from 01 April 2017. This is in order to ensure a smooth rollover to the changed tax structure from the beginning of the new fiscal and avoid mid-year alterations.

In another news update from the global financial markets, the commerce ministry of China stated that trade environment will remain weak for the remainder of 2016. This comes as a concern for the Chinese economy which faced lower than expected trade data in the month of September.

Data released last week showed that Chinese trade data came in lower than expected. Chinese imports in dollar terms contracted 1.9% YoY during last month. Further, exports dropped by a 10% YoY in September as against a 2.8% contraction in August.

The release of data pointed to weaker Chinese demand both at home and abroad. It also revived concerns over the latest depreciation in China's yuan currency.

The Chinese government is doing all it can to revive the trade situation of the nation. Earlier this month, China declared to cut red tape and ease rules for foreign investors in order to boost the economy and counter a decline in private investment. Not only that, but the Chinese government also decided to block new projects in sectors that are plagued by overcapacity. Some of these sectors in China are steel, coal, and aluminum.

While the above measures will boost the investment environment, the steep decline in exports can bring troubles for the Chinese economy. We believe China needs to do better to come out of the ongoing economic slowdown. While stimulus measures by Chinese government had provided some aid, sluggish demand and excess capacity are threatening to reverse China's economic engine, which had been moving at a frenzied pace.

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May 25, 2017 (Close)

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