US China Trade War Escalations and Election Results: Volatility Set to Rule
Podcast

India could be the latest direct victim of the US-China trade war. The increasing escalations have already slowed down global growth.

On March 4, President Donald Trump announced that the US intends to terminate India as a beneficiary developing country under the GSP programme. The 60-day notice period ended on May 3.

These developments could see India bowing out as a preferred trade partner to the US and may lose its trade.

Is there another way out?

Tune in to find out...


Sensex Surges 537 Points; Banking and Auto Stocks Witness Buying
Closing

Indian share markets continued their momentum and ended their trading session on a positive note today. Gains were largely seen in the banking sector, FMCG sector and auto sector.

At the closing bell, the BSE Sensex stood higher by 537 points (up 1.4%) and the NSE Nifty closed higher by 150 points (up 1.3%).

The BSE Mid Cap index ended the day up by 1.1%, while the BSE Small Cap index ended the day up by 0.5%.

Asian stock markets finished on a mixed note as of the most recent closing prices. The Hang Seng stood down by 1.2% and the Nikkei was trading up by 0.9%.

European markets were trading on a negative note. The FTSE 100 was down by 0.3%. The DAX was trading down by 0.9%, while the CAC 40 was down by 0.4%.

The rupee was trading at 70.16 to the US$ at the time of writing.

Indian share markets were trading in the green just ahead of exit polls results which are scheduled to come out on Sunday.

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What's Common Between Four of the World's Top Five Companies?

If you look at the four of the world's top five companies by market capitalisation - Apple, Alphabet (Google), Amazon, and Microsoft, you'll find something amazing.

They are using one powerful strategy to scale their business all over the world, without any major costs involved.

Even Nike, Uber and Netflix are using the same strategy to kill their competitors mercilessly.

Want to know which Indian companies are using this strategy?

Click here and see yourself...
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The polling will end on May 19, 2019, after which exit polls will start to come out.

How the market reacts to the outcome remains to be seen. We will keep you updated on all the developments from this space. Stay tuned.

Also, speaking of the general mood in Indian stock markets these days, a lot of market participants are playing the prediction game ahead of elections.

A common theme is to sit on cash to escape the volatility ahead of the upcoming elections. In case there is an unexpected event, you can then get in post the correction.

But does timing the market work?

Not really, if you see the market performance in the year of the past three national elections (2004,2009 and 2014).

Downside of Timing The Stock Market

Looking at the returns in the above chart, staying out of the market to escape volatility would have been a costly affair every time.

The market gave above average returns in all three of those years.

This does not mean one can expect the same in the future.

But there's one thing for sure. Predicting short-term directions of the market is a futile and many a times a costly affair.

That's why we believe in picking safe stocks when they are actually 'safe' i.e. during such times of high pessimism and uncertainty.

In the news from the automobile sector, market participants were tracking Bajaj Auto share price as the company posted 20.9% year-on-year (YoY) rise in standalone profit at Rs 13.1 billion over Rs 10.8 billion in the same period last year.

Standalone revenue from operations jumped 8.9% YoY to Rs 73.9 billion during the quarter.

The company sold 11,93,590 standalone units in March quarter against 10,45,378 units in the same period last year.

During the quarter, the company reported its highest-ever operating profit of Rs 53.8 billion with EBITDA margin of 17.6%.

On a consolidated basis, the auto firm posted 20% YoY rise in profit at Rs 14.1 billion.

The board of the company has recommended a dividend of Rs 60 per share.

Speaking of auto sector, note that automobile companies have shifted to low gear and demand has flattened across the board. NBFC crisis, followed by lower off-tick of volumes, and increasing competition has taken a major toll on automobile original equipment manufacturer (OEMs).

According to reports, major dealers across the country have been burdened with high inventory prompting OEMs to re-align their production.

While private vehicles (PVs) have been facing stiff task with dealers across geographies grappling with higher inventory, commercial vehicles (CVs) are seeing some revival led by fresh disbursal by NBFCs.

It would be interesting to see how this trend will pan out ahead.

Also, for auto stocks, one thing to keep in mind is that not all auto companies will make money over time. And also, you shouldn't stay away from auto stocks altogether.

Even Tanushree Banerjee, Co-head of research at Equitymaster believes that there are businesses in this sector that you cannot ignore. She is particularly talking about the blue-chip auto stocks.

She believes, this could be the opportunity long term investors were waiting for.

Moving on to the news from the pharma space, Shilpa Medicare share price was also in focus today as the company said it has received final approval from the US health regulator for Docetaxel Injection. The injection is used for treatment of various types of cancers.

The company in its filing said that it has received US Food and Drug Administration final approval for its abbreviated new drug application(ANDA) Docetaxel Injection USP in the strengths of 20 mg/mL, 80 mg/4 mL (20 mg/mL), and 160 mg/8 mL (20 mg/mL).

The drug is a generic equivalent of reference listed drug (RLD) Taxotere used in the treatment of breast cancer, non-small cell lung cancer, prostate cancer, castric adenocarcinoma, head and neck cancer as recommended in the label approved by USFDA.

As per a data, the company said the US market for Docetaxel Injection USP is approximately US$ 32.13 million.

Speaking of pharma sector, we at Equitymaster believe that pharma companies that invest in creating a pipeline of complex generics or building competencies in alternative dosage forms are better equipped to tackle the changing dynamics in the US generics market as well as in the overall industry.

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


Sensex Trades Over 300 Points Higher; Bajaj Finance Hits Record High
12:30 pm

Share markets in India are presently trading on a positive note. Sectoral indices are trading mixed with stocks in the FMCG sector, finance sector and automobile sector witnessing maximum buying interest, while healthcare stocks and metal stocks are trading in red.

The BSE Sensex is trading up by 324 points (up 0.9%), while the NSE Nifty is trading up by 84 points (up 0.7%). The BSE Mid Cap index and the BSE Small Cap index are trading up by 0.4%.

The rupee is trading at Rs 70.12 against the US$.

Speaking of share markets in general, the mood in the Indian stock market changes in a matter of months.

Till February 2019, mutual fund inflows were on a steady decline.

And that's when Tanushree had asked her readers to stay put and not give into the panic.

--- Advertisement ---
What's Common Between Four of the World's Top Five Companies?

If you look at the four of the world's top five companies by market capitalisation - Apple, Alphabet (Google), Amazon, and Microsoft, you'll find something amazing.

They are using one powerful strategy to scale their business all over the world, without any major costs involved.

Even Nike, Uber and Netflix are using the same strategy to kill their competitors mercilessly.

Want to know which Indian companies are using this strategy?

Click here and see yourself...
------------------------------

Holding and buying quality businesses during times of extreme pessimism goes a long way in creating long-term wealth.

The mutual fund data from the March 2019 certainly proves this point.

Rising Mutual Fund Inflows - Is the Market Correction Over?

As can be seen from the chart above, the net inflows into Equity fund in March 2019 (Rs 117 billion) are its highest levels since October 2018.

The reason could be people believing the Modi government will return to power.

Here's what Tanushree wrote about this in one of the recent editions of The 5 Minute WrapUp...

  • While we recommended to not give into panic in February 2019, this time its euphoria we're recommending against.

    Don't fall into the greed trap.

    Hold on to your safe stocks and don't go looking for overvalued stocks. Maintaining your calm when everyone is losing theirs will help you build long-term wealth.

Moving on, market participants are tracking Bajaj Auto share price, Dr Reddy's share price, and UPL share price as these companies are set to announce their results today.

You can also read our recently released Q4FY19 Results: ITC, Inox Leisure, Nestle, Orbit Exports, Siemens.

In the news from the finance sector, Bajaj Finance share price is witnessing buying interest today after the company reported a surprisingly well profit and net interest income (NII) in March quarter.

The non-banking financial company (NBFC) recorded a strong 57% year-on-year (YoY) growth in net profit at Rs 11.8 billion in March quarter.

NII grew 50% at Rs 33.9 billion on YoY basis. Assets under management (AUM) rose 41% at Rs 1.2 trillion.

Meanwhile, company's gross non-performing assets (NPAs) ratio stood at 1.5%. The lender booked 5.8 million new loans during the quarter under review, up 53% from 3.8 million in the same period last year.

Reports state that between 31 August 2018 and 21 March 2019, the company had debt repayments of Rs 125.4 billion, of which commercial paper repayments are around Rs 77 billion. As on 21 March 2019, it had cash and cash equivalents of Rs 35.3 billion.

Shares of the company touched a fresh all-time high of Rs 3262, surpassing its previous high of Rs 3162 recorded on May 3, 2019.

Moving on to the news from the pharma sector, Piramal Enterprise share price is in focus today as its wholly owned subsidiary - Piramal Capital & Housing Finance (PCHFL) has expanded its housing finance operations in Gujarat, with the launch of two new branches - Vadodara and Surat in the state of Gujarat.

The company will provide its housing finance offerings namely home loans, loans against property and small ticket construction finance in these markets.

To know more about the company, you can read Piramal Enterprises' Latest Result Analysis on our website.

In other news, shares of Aurobindo Pharma fell around 6% in early trade today after the drug firm announced that the American drug regulator classified the inspection of the company's API intermediates facilities of Unit I, IX and XI as Official Action Indicated (OAI).

As per an article in a leading financial daily, the company has received letters from the US Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) classifying the inspections concluded at our API facilities.

Here's an excerpt from the article:

  • The company is sending further updates on the committed corrective actions, adding that it was confident that these OAI classifications will not have an impact on disruption of supplies or the revenue from operations of these facilities.

Aurobindo Pharma share price is presently trading down by 7%.

Speaking of pharma sector, we at Equitymaster believe that pharma companies that invest in creating a pipeline of complex generics or building competencies in alternative dosage forms are better equipped to tackle the changing dynamics in the US generics market as well as in the overall industry.

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


Sensex Opens in Green; Telecom and Metal Stocks Lead
09:30 am

Asian share markets are lower today as Chinese and Hong Kong shares fall. The Shanghai Composite is off 1.3% while the Hang Seng is down 0.7%. The Nikkei 225 is trading up by 1.6%. Wall Street closed higher on Thursday as upbeat earnings and strong economic data put investors in a buying mood, with technology companies leading the charge.

Back home, India share markets opened marginally higher. The BSE Sensex is trading up by 76 points while the NSE Nifty is trading up by 15 points. Both, the BSE Mid Cap index and BSE Small Cap index opened on a flat note.

Sectoral indices have opened the day on a mixed note with automobiles and FMCG stocks witnessing maximum buying interest. Telecom and metal stocks have opened the day in red.

The rupee is currently trading at 70.22 against the US$.

In the news from the economy. As per an article in a leading financial daily, America's year-long trade war with China is pushing US companies to source more from GSP beneficiary countries such as India, Thailand, Cambodia, Indonesia and Turkey.

--- Advertisement ---
What's Common Between Four of the World's Top Five Companies?

If you look at the four of the world's top five companies by market capitalisation - Apple, Alphabet (Google), Amazon, and Microsoft, you'll find something amazing.

They are using one powerful strategy to scale their business all over the world, without any major costs involved.

Even Nike, Uber and Netflix are using the same strategy to kill their competitors mercilessly.

Want to know which Indian companies are using this strategy?

Click here and see yourself...
------------------------------

The Coalition for GSP, a group of American companies and trade associations, in a report said the latest official trade figures show that the Generalised System of Preference or GSP saved American companies US$105 million in March, an increase of US$28 million (36%) from March 2018 and the second-highest level on record.

In the first quarter of 2019, the GSP saved American companies US$285 million, which is US$63 million more than the first quarter of 2018.

The GSP is the largest and oldest US trade preference programme and is designed to promote economic development by allowing duty-free entry for thousands of products from designated beneficiary countries.

On March 4, President Donald Trump announced that the US intends to terminate India as a beneficiary developing country under the GSP programme. The 60-day notice period ended on May 3.

Noting that imports from China, subject to new tariffs, are down significantly, the coalition said imports of products from other GSP beneficiaries have increased the most in the first quarter of 2019.

According to the reports, India benefits the most from this.

For India, 97% of increased 2019 GSP imports are on the China Section 301 lists. GSP imports on Section 301 lists increased by US$193 million (18%), while imports of everything else increased by just US$7 million (2%).

In another report, the coalition said cancelling the GSP for India would benefit China.

Referring to the results of a recent survey, the coalition said 30% of companies would look to source more from China if GSP benefits are done away with.

Now how this pans out going forward remains to be seen.

Moving on to another news. Larsen and Toubro Ltd (L&T) on Thursday purchased 880,000 shares of Mindtree, raising its stake in the IT services firm from 25.94% to 26.48%.

Reportedly, L&T bought the shares at Rs 979.8 on a day when Mindtree's stock closed 0.5% higher at Rs 980.3 on BSE. With its stake crossing 26%, L&T is in a position to demand a board representation in Mindtree.

The engineering behemoth is in the process of taking over Mindtree, with a plan to buy up to 66.3% shares of the company for up to Rs 107 billion, in the first hostile takeover in India's IT industry.

As per the reports, L&T, after buying a 20.3% stake jointly held by Cafe Coffee Day founder V.G. Siddhartha and two of CCD's associate firms, had said that it intended to buy an additional 15% from the open market and another 31% through an open offer at Rs 980 per share.

The open offer was originally proposed to open on 14 May and close on 27 May.

However, L&T was compelled to postpone its open offer by at least a fortnight after the markets regulator sent the draft offer letter back to L&T with a set of queries on the proposed takeover. On 10 May, L&T submitted its response to the regulator.

Irrespective of the open offer, L&T will continue to purchase Mindtree shares from the public during trading hours until it finishes buying the planned 15% from the open market.

As per the reports, the combination of the two companies will help create an entity with a higher turnover of close to Rs 120 billion, closer to larger rivals such as Wipro and TCS.

The Mindtree management, however, thinks differently.

Creating Synergies?

Given that the takeover has just been launched, it would be too early to make any predictions regarding the outcome.

While the L&T-Mindtree saga will one day disappear into the history books, the lessons will not.

One thing that we must bear in mind is that most companies in India are managed by promoters.

Hence, they are bound to protect their interest and will not relinquish control without a fight.

This means that the company launching such an attack needs to be very clear as to why it wants to go down this route.

Here's snippet from the article on hostile takeovers that Tanushree Banerjee, co-head of research wrote:

  • "In mergers and acquisitions, in general, the acquiring company has to make sure that it pays a reasonable price for the target company. It needs to gauge the synergies that are likely to flow in on making the acquisition such that the payback period is not too long. Many a time, when competition for a particular target heats up, valuations soar. As a result, the company which has finally made the acquisition ends up paying a very high price."

This applies to hostile takeovers as well.

L&T share price and Mindtree share price opened the day up by 0.2% and 0.8% respectively.

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


Rising Oil Prices amid Middle East Tensions, Key Q4FY19 Results and Top Stocks in Action
Pre-Open

The Indian share markets surged in the final hour of trading on Thursday. At close, the Sensex was 279 points at 37,393, while Nifty was up 100 points at 11,257.

Except pharma, all other sectoral indices ended higher led by IT, metal, energy, bank and automobiles sector.

Rupee opened stronger at 70.27 versus Wednesday's close of 70.33 against the US dollar.

Top Stocks in Focus

Bajaj Finance share price will be in focus as the company reported a rise of 49.9% in its net profit at Rs 11.1 billion for the quarter under review as compared to Rs 7.4 billion for the same quarter in the previous year.

Meanwhile, Hindalco reported a fall of 37.4% in its net profit at Rs 2.4 billion for the quarter ended March 2019 as compared to Rs 3.8 billion for the same quarter in the previous year.

JSW Energy reported consolidated net profit at Rs 39 million versus Rs loss of Rs 4,831 million, revenue up 8.4% at Rs 19,240 million versus Rs 17,750 million, YoY.

--- Advertisement ---
What's Common Between Four of the World's Top Five Companies?

If you look at the four of the world's top five companies by market capitalisation - Apple, Alphabet (Google), Amazon, and Microsoft, you'll find something amazing.

They are using one powerful strategy to scale their business all over the world, without any major costs involved.

Even Nike, Uber and Netflix are using the same strategy to kill their competitors mercilessly.

Want to know which Indian companies are using this strategy?

Click here and see yourself...
------------------------------

The United States Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) has completed inspection at Lupin's Aurangabad manufacturing facility. The inspection was carried out from 6 May to 15 May 2019. The stock will be watched out today.

Shilpa Medicare has received USFDA final approval for its ANDA, Zoledronic Acid Injection, 4 mg/5 mL. The drug is a generic equivalent of reference listed drug (RLD) Zometa.

Ashok Leyland has received an order from Senegal. This order comes from Senbus Industries, a company assembling urban buses in Dakar. The company has signed a contract for supplying 400 units of Ashok Leyland Eagle 916 Minibuses worth Euro 10.1 million.

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

Results Corner

Market participants will track Bajaj Auto, CESC, Ador Fontech, City Union Bank, Corporation Bank, IOC, SRL, UPL among others as they announce their March quarter results today.

Global Stock Market Drivers

Bonds rose globally on Thursday, European stocks edged lower with US equity futures and Asian shares fell amid simmering trade tensions between the world's biggest economies. The dollar was steady and crude oil gained.

Equities have oscillated this week as traders scramble to make sense of a slew of headlines.

In the latest developments, President Donald Trump signed an order that's expected to restrict Chinese telecommunications firms from selling their equipment in the US, while he's set to give the European Union and Japan a deadline to agree to "limit or restrict" automobile exports to America.

Amid the confusing landscape, traders have increased bets on the Federal Reserve cutting borrowing costs later this year.

Here are some notable events to watch out for:

  • Walmart and Nvidia are among companies reporting earnings today.
  • Bank of Indonesia's an interest rate decision will be in focus.

Oil Prices Rise amid Middle-east Tensions

Oil prices rose on Thursday for the third day in a row as fears of supply disruptions amid heightened tensions in the Middle East overshadowed swelling US crude inventories.

Brent crude futures were at US$72.30 a barrel, up 53 cents from their last close. Brent is heading for its biggest weekly rise in six weeks.

US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at US$62.49 per barrel, up 47 cents from their previous settlement.

Oil was drawing support from the risk of conflict in the Middle East, with helicopters carrying US staff from the US embassy in Baghdad on Wednesday out of apparent concern about perceived threats from Iran.

Also keeping prices in check is uncertainty about whether OPEC and other producers will maintain into the second half of the year supply cuts that have boosted prices more than 30% in 2019.

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) said on Tuesday that world demand for its oil would be higher than expected this year.

The OPEC+ group of producers, which includes Russia, meets next month to review whether to maintain the pact beyond June.

The oil market is marked by tight supply.

An end this month to US waivers that allowed some countries to buy Iranian oil after the reposition of US sanctions has prompted Tehran to relax restrictions on its nuclear program and threaten action that could breach a 2015 nuclear deal.

An attack on four oil tankers in the Gulf on Sunday, for which no one has claimed responsibility, and Saudi Arabia's announcement that armed drones hit two of its oil pumping stations, have compounded concerns have stoked supply-side fears.