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Sensex Opens in Green; Energy Stocks Gain the Most
Thu, 16 Nov 09:30 am | Karan Janani, TM Team

Asian stock markets are higher today as Japanese and Hong Kong shares show gains. The Nikkei 225 is up 0.83% while the Hang Seng is up 0.59%. The Shanghai Composite is trading down by 0.1%. Overnight, US and European markets closed lower.

Meanwhile, Indian share markets too have opened the day higher. BSE Sensex is trading higher by 131 points and NSE Nifty is trading higher by 28 points. S&P BSE Mid Cap and S&P BSE Small Cap are trading up by 0.6% respectively. Gains are largely seen in energy stocks and capital good stocks. The rupee is trading at Rs 65.37 against the US$.

Small caps have comfortably outperformed the Large caps and how. The BSE Small Cap Index has returned 21.7% in FY18 compared to 12.5% by BSE 100 and 11.7% by the Sensex.

Small Caps - Outperformers in Current Financial Year

Expectedly, valuations of certain Small cap companies have gone through the roof. It is important to understand the highly volatile nature of these stocks. In a downturn, these stocks tend to move in the opposite direction much faster as well.

While there, undoubtedly, lies hidden opportunities in the small cap space, it is important to focus on fundamentals of these stocks. Next, assess if they have the potential to move on to the 'Safe stock' category in the future.

In news from oil & gas sector. As per an article in The Livemint, Oil and Natural Gas Corp. Ltd (ONGC) and Vedanta Ltd on Wednesday emerged as the biggest bidders for oil and gas blocks, putting in 41 out of 56 bids received in India's maiden auction under open acreage licensing regime.

ONGC put in expression of interest for 41 areas while Vedanta's oil unit, Cairn India sought rights over 15 areas.

India in July opened 2.8 million sq. km of sedimentary basins for oil and gas exploration in a bid to raise domestic production and cut excessive dependence on imports. The open acreage licensing (OAL) allows companies to select blocks or areas after studying seismic data to explore and produce oil and gas.

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In another development, ONGC may shelve its shale gas exploration plans due to firm's "limited success" in the exploration program.

Meanwhile, many market experts are of the opinion that higher gas realizations, increasing domestic volumes, and lower operating expenses will drive ONGC's profitability going forward, as the company expects gas production to increase 12-14% in FY18 and beyond, with several offshore fields coming on stream.

ONGC share price opened the day up by 1.4% on the BSE.

Moving on to news from steel sector. As per an article in The Times of India, ArcelorMittal and Tata Steel have intensified efforts to place takeover bids for Essar Steel and Bhushan Steel.

As per the reports, ArcelorMittal is working with Goldman Sachs to prepare bids for the two assets, with a team visiting the sites in recent days as part of the due diligence process. The Tatas visited Bhushan Steel and followed it up with Essar as well.

The Tatas would stay focused on chasing the two biggest steel assets referred to the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) as part of the bankruptcy resolution process.

Earlier, the Tatas were also seen as a strong contender for Electrosteel as they keenly assess a renewed domestic build-out for Tata Steel as the sector shows signs of a cyclical recovery, though a final decision on bidding is not yet taken.

Five among the 12 companies referred to the NCLT by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) for resolution proceedings are steelmakers.

ArcelorMittal is sensing an opportunity in the bankruptcy proceedings to expand its India footprint through acquisitions, after its ambitious greenfield plans in Jharkhand and Orissa didn't progress on expected lines and a joint venture with SAIL hasn't taken off yet.

Tata Steel share price opened the trading day up by 0.7%

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