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Indian Indices Extend Gains; Axis Bank and Bajaj Finance Surge 4%
Wed, 1 Jul 12:30 pm | Monish Vora, TM Team

Share markets in India have extended early gains and are presently trading higher, tracking mixed global cues.

Global stock markets mostly traded higher as investors looked past spiking virus infections and warnings of a US surge in the disease, with eyes on the economic recovery as countries press ahead with the easing of lockdowns.

The BSE Sensex is trading up by 247 points, up 0.7%, at 35,150 levels. Meanwhile, the NSE Nifty is trading up by 62 points.

The BSE Mid Cap index is trading down by 0.1%. The BSE Small Cap index is trading up by 0.3%.

On the sectoral front, gains are largely seen in the finance sector and banking sector.

Power stocks, on the other hand, are witnessing selling pressure.

The rupee is trading at 75.53 against the US$.

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Gold prices are trading up by 0.2% at Rs 48,841 per 10 grams.

Domestic gold prices surged to record high, tracking firm global rates. Tracking gold, silver rates went past Rs 50,000 per kg.

In news from the energy sector, shares of Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) slipped as much as 4% today, a day after the state-run oil & gas company posted a pre-tax loss of Rs 105.3 billion in the fourth quarter of the financial year 2019-20 (Q4FY20).

This was ONGC's first-ever quarterly loss. Reportedly, the loss was due to a drop in crude oil prices, the impact of the Covid-19-induced lockdown, and exchange losses.

The company's director of finance, Subhash Kumar, said that the combined impact of reduced demand, Covid-19, reduced offtake and lower crude prices had an impact on the company's numbers to the tune of Rs 49 billion.

He added that another major factor was foreign exchange losses. The rupee had depreciated heavily during the quarter, resulting in a loss of Rs 11.1 billion on exchange rate variation, as against a gain of over Rs 2 billion during the same time last year.

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The company's revenue from operations declined by 7% to Rs 1,044.9 billion in the quarter under review, compared to Rs 1,125.4 billion the previous year.

During Q4FY20, the company's net realisation on crude was seen US$ 49.01 a barrel, as against US$ 61.93 a barrel a year ago.

Gas price for the quarter was also lower at US$ 3.23 per million metric British thermal unit (mmBtu), compared to US$ 3.36 a mmBtu in the year-ago period.

For the whole of FY20, the company's profit before tax fell by 65% to Rs 190.7 billion as against Rs 548.5 billion in FY19.

Revenue from operations saw a 6% drop from Rs 4,536.8 billion in FY19 to Rs 4,250 billion in FY20.

ONGC share price is presently trading down by 2.5%.

Moving on, Ruchi Soya Industries is among the buzzing stocks today. Patanjali Ayurved on Tuesday said that it never claimed to have made medicine for coronavirus.

The Haridwar-based organisation has withdrawn from its earlier claim, in reply to the notice given by Uttarakhand Ayush Ministry.

Last month, it was reported that Patanjali Ayurved, in collaboration with NIMS University, launched Coronil and Shwasari Vati, claiming to cure corona patients.

Note that shares of Ruchi Soya have entered into negative territory since the start of this week's trading session.

Last week, the company reported a net loss of Rs 412.5 million for the quarter ended March 31, as against a profit of Rs 321.1 million in the corresponding period a year ago.

The total income was up 1% compared to the year-ago period. Ruchi Soya shares fell as much as 5% yesterday.

Revenue from the oil business grew 4.5%, whereas that from seed extraction and food products units declined 33.3% and 0.9% respectively.

However, profit for the full financial year grew 100 times. Revenue increased 2.7% in FY20.

Shares of Ruchi Soya were relisted in January 2020. This was after Patanjali group acquired the bankrupt edible oil company earlier this year.

Since then, the stock has soared 6,729%.

Market Darling of 2020

The unstoppable rally in the shares of Ruchi Soya, which Baba Ramdev's Patanjali Group acquired last year in a bankruptcy sale, has made the edible oil maker one of the top 60 companies on Dalal Street in terms of market capitalisation.

In terms of market-cap, Ruchi Soya is now bigger than companies like Lupin, Torrent Pharma, Tata Steel, Ambuja Cements, HPCL, Grasim, Punjab National Bank, Hindalco, UPL, Colgate-Palmolive and Havells India.

After a sharp rally in the stock price, analysts have turned cautious on the stock. They feel markets regulator should take note and probe what is driving the ongoing rally on the counter.

They said the market regulator should ask the company when it is planning to meet the minimum public shareholding norms of 25%.

As of March 31, 2020, the promoters held 99.03% stake in the company. Retail investors currently own less than 1% in the company.

We will keep you updated on the latest developments from this space. Stay tuned.

To know what's moving the Indian stock markets today, check out the most recent share market updates here.

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