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Indian stock markets open flat
Fri, 23 Dec 09:30 am

Most major Asian stock markets have opened the day on a firm note with stock markets in Taiwan (up 1.9%), China (up 1.4%) and South Korea (up 1.3%) leading the gains. However, the Indian stock markets have also opened the day on a flat note. While capital goods stocks are trading firm, stocks in the Information Technology and banking space are trading in the red.

The BSE-Sensex is trading marginally lower by 2 points (0.02%), while the NSE-Nifty is also down by around 2 points (0.05%). However, mid cap and small cap stocks are trading in the green, with the BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap indices up by 0.5% and 0.8% respectively. The rupee is trading at 52.69 to the US dollar.

Private bank stocks have opened the day on a mixed note with ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank and ING Vysya Bank trading in the red. However, Dhanlaxmi Bank and Yes Bank are trading firm. As per a leading financial daily, private sector lender Yes Bank has hiked interest rates on its savings bank deposits to 7% for customers having balance above Rs 1 lakh. This makes it the highest interest rate on savings deposit. In a similar vein, HDFC Bank and Dhanlaxmi Bank have raised interest rates on non-resident deposits. HDFC Bank is offering 9% interest for deposits over Rs 10 m for a slab of one to two years. On the other hand, Dhanlaxmi Bank is offering 8% for one to three years on any amount. Recently, even Laxmi Vilas Bank also hiked rates on NRE deposits to 10%. These initiatives have come on the back of the deregulation of the savings rate deposit by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI). Earlier, the rates were fixed at 4% by the RBI.

Steel stocks have also opened the day on a mixed note with Jindal Saw Ltd and JSW Steel facing selling pressure. However, Steel Authority of India Ltd (SAIL) is trading firm. As per industry body Assocham, consumption of steel in India is set to reach 122 million tonnes (mt) by 2015. The current annual consumption is about 70 mt. The main factors that will drive the growth of steel consumption include agriculture, consumer durables, capital goods, oil & gas, and water. However, the availability of resources such as key raw materials, infrastructure, etc. would be needed to facilitate this growth. According to the secretary general of Assocham, domestic steel companies must target countries like Mozambique and Australia to secure the availability of coking coal.

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Feb 20, 2018 03:35 PM