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Indian share markets witnessed some selling pressure in the afternoon session to finish on a flat note. At the closing bell, the BSE Sensex stood lower by 3 points, while the NSE Nifty finished up by 2 points. The S&P BSE Mid Cap & the S&P BSE Small Cap finished up by 0.6% and 0.9% respectively. Gains were largely seen in FMCG, pharma and IT stocks. Meanwhile, capital goods and energy stocks led the losses.
Asian markets finished mixed as of the most recent closing prices. The Hang Seng gained 0.83%, while China's Shanghai Composite was off 0.40%. Shares in Japan were unchanged with the Nikkei 225 at 19,402 as Toshiba stumbled 20%, extending its fall from the previous day after the company said it may have to book several billion dollars in charges related to its acquisition of a U.S. nuclear power business. European markets are mixed. The FTSE 100 is higher by 0.28%, while Germany's DAX is off 0.03%. Shares in France are trading flat.
The rupee was trading at 68.23 against the US$ in the afternoon session. Oil prices were trading at US$ 54.14 at the time of writing.
According to an article in The Financial Express, India is likely to turn a net exporter of steel in coming years, on the back of an improvement in international prices, led by cost-push and anemic local demand.
India's imports stood at 4.7 MT during the April-November period of the current fiscal, down by over 39% over the same period of the last fiscal. Exports, on the other hand, picked up to 4.2 MT registering a whopping 53% growth over April-November, 2015.
India has been a net importer of steel in all the last five years barring in 2013-14. The gap between imports and exports was on the rise in the last two years. Trends took a U-turn as the government tightened imports by putting a minimum import price (MIP) on various products in February and then levying anti-dumping and safeguard duties in its effort to protect the interest of the domestic steel industry.
Many countries have imposed strong trade barriers against China alleging exports at predatory prices. This turned out to be a blessing for Indian steelmakers. However, things could change if India's steel demand rises keeping pace with the infrastructure development and domestic producers keep unabated the price rise.
Moving on to news from stocks in power sector. NTPC's share price finished the trading day on an encouraging note (up 0.2%) after it was reported that the company's total installed capacity increased to 48,028 MW following the commissioning of 800 MW unit at Kudgi in Karnataka.
The company has 19 coal-based, 7 gas-based, 9 solar Image result for Photovoltaic (PV), one hydro and 9 subsidiaries/joint venture power stations.
Sentiments also remained positive after company's wholly-owned arm NTPC Vidyut Vyapar Nigam has signed power purchase pact with Nepal Electricity Authority to supply 160 MW power for January-May 2017.
In another development, NTPC has lined up investments worth Rs 26.48 billion for developing three coal blocks in Odisha. NTPC recently proposed to establish a 400 MW solar power project with a total investment of Rs 22 billion.
At present, NTPC is generating 360 MW of solar energy with an additional 510 MW to be generated soon after the development work in multiple projects is completed. NTPC also has a good presence in hydroelectric power with a generation capacity of 800 MW.
NTPC s playing a major role in meeting the power needs of the country and contributing to its economic and social development, contributing nearly 24% of country's power generation.
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