Indian markets tumble post noon

After remaining close to the dotted line in the first half, the Indian equity markets saw a sharp fall in final hours of trade selling activity increased in the frontline blue-chips. While the BSE Sensex today closed lower by 604 points, the NSE-Nifty plunged by 165 points. Midcaps and smallcaps too languished in the red. While the BSE Mid Cap index closed the day lower by 1.6%, the BSE Small Cap index closed the day lower by 1.2%. All sectoral indices finished the day on a negative note, with metal, banking and capital goods stocks being the top losers today.

Asian markets finished mixed as of the most recent closing prices. The Shanghai Composite gained 0.92% and the Hang Seng rose 0.08%. The Nikkei 225 lost 1.96%. European markets are trading lower today with shares in France off the most. The CAC 40 is down 2.48% while Germany's DAX is off 2.31% and London's FTSE 100 is lower by 2.16%. The rupee was trading strong at 65.62 against the US$ in the afternoon session.

According to a leading financial daily, Infosys has signed a 3-year agreement with TOMS to become its worldwide partner to maintain and develop its digital platform. The agreement will enable TOMS to streamline the management of its web-based properties and introduce automation technologies to lower overall support and development costs. The company has also bagged Rs 14 bn contract from GST Network (GST-N) to build the IT system so that the goods and services tax (GST) regime is rolled out on schedule. The company is supposed to lay the IT-backbone to implement the GST regime and once the backbone is ready, the company will operate it for five years.

Stocks from the oil and gas sector languished in red with Gujarat Gas and Reliance Industries bearing majority of the brunt. Crude oil production rose in August 2015 to 319,300 ton, a rise of 5.6% on year-on-year basis, as per data compiled by Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas. The increase was however marginal as compared to July 2015 production even as the yield was more than the target. The natural gas production, on the other hand, was lower than the target. The production in August 2015, however, improved slightly to 2,836 million cubic metre as against 2,736 million cubic metre in August 2014 and 2,619 million cubic metre in July 2015.

Indian markets dip into the red
01:30 pm

After trading on a firm note during the morning session of the day, the Indian equity markets gave up their gains by diving into the red during the post noon trading session. Gains were led by stocks from software and pharma segments. However, aluminum stocks are bearing maximum burnt.

The BSE-Sensex is trading down 57 points (0.2%) and the NSE-Nifty is trading down by 20 points (0.3%). The BSE Mid Cap index is trading down by 0.3% while the BSE Small Cap is trading marginally up. Gold prices, per 10 grams, are trading at Rs 26,341 levels. Silver price, per kilogram, is trading at Rs 36,090 levels. Crude oil is trading at Rs 3,042 per barrel. At the time of writing, the rupee stood at 65.64 to the US dollar.

Automobile stocks are trading mixed with Force Motors and Ashok Leyland leading the gains. As per a leading financial daily, Mahindra & Mahindra's (M&M) step-down arm Mahindra Auto Steel (MASL) has inaugurated its automotive steel processing facility in the auto belt of Chakan, in the state of Maharashtra. This facility is a joint venture (JV) with China Steel Global Trading Corporation, Taiwan and Mitsui &Company, Singapore. Mahindra Intertrade holds 51% in the JV while the other partners hold 24.5% each. The facility has been set up at a cost of Rs 1.1 bn over 10 acres of land in Phase I. Presently the stock of Mahindra & Mahindra is trading up by 1%.

Stocks in the power space are also trading mixed with Power Grid and NTPC witnessing maximum selling pressure. As per an article in Business Standard, Tata Power is all set to strengthen its distribution network in Mumbai. For this, the company is reportedly waiting for the Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission (MERC) approval. The network expansion will also help the firm step up its distribution after the completion of the replacement of 500 MW of Trombay unit from a gas-based to a thermal-based one. Currently the company is using Reliance Infrastructure's network to service cross-over consumers. Stock of Tata Power is trading up by 0.5%.

Indian markets trade positively
11:30 am

After opening the day on a firm note, the Indian Markets have continued to trade positively. Sectoral indices are trading on a mixed note with stocks from the pharma and software sectors leading the gains. However aluminum stocks are witnessing selling pressure.

The BSE-Sensex is trading up 76 points (up 0.3%) and the NSE-Nifty is trading up 21 points (up 0.3%). The BSE Mid Cap index is trading up by 0.4% while the BSE Small Cap index is trading up 0.8%. The rupee is trading at 65.62 to the US dollar.

Automobile stocks are trading mixed with Ashok Leyland and Eicher Motors leading the gains. As per a leading financial daily, India's largest automobile company Tata Motors is planning to launch a new small commercial vehicle (SCV) 'Magic Mantra' in the country next month. With this, it is thereby expanding product range under its popular public transport vehicle 'Tata Magic'. The 40 HP Magic Mantra would be the newest entrant in the Tata Magic range, which has already scaled the 3 lakh units sales milestone so far in the country. The range currently offers four offerings, based on engine type and fuel. Stock of the company is presently trading down by 0.5%.

Gains in the pharma space were led by Dishman Pharma and Piramal Enterprises. As per an article in a leading financial daily, Dr Reddy's Laboratories has entered into a settlement agreement with BioMarin Pharmaceuticals to resolve patent litigation in the US regarding the 100 mg oral tablets- Kuvan. This agreement will grant Dr Reddy's a non-exclusive license to its patent on Kuvan and will allow it to market a generic version of Kuvan 100mg tablets in the US at a later stage, which is said to be more than five years from now. BioMarin Pharmaceuticals had sued Dr Reddy's Laboratories last November for allegedly infringing patents covering this phenylketonuria drug. Presently the scrip of the company is trading up by 0.8% on the BSE.

Indian markets open firm
09:30 am

The major Asian equity markets have opened the day in green. Stock markets in Hong Kong and China are up by 0.7%. Even, the most of the indices in the European markets ended their previous session in green. While, the benchmark indices in US ended their previous session marginally up by 0.04%. The rupee is trading at 65.67 per US dollar.

Indian stock markets have opened the day on an encouraging note too. BSE Sensex is trading up by 120 points (up 0.5%) and NSE-Nifty is trading up by 30 points (up 0.4%). Both BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap have moved upwards. Both the indices are trading up by 0.6% and 0.7% respectively. Sectoral indices have opened the day on a positive note with stocks from banking, information technology (IT) sector are witnessing maximum buying interest.

As per an article in Livemint, National Thermal Power Company (NTPC) plans to raise Rs 7bn by selling tax free bonds. These funds will be utilized for its renewable energy project. Of the total issue, 40% is reserved for the retail sector. The raised amount will help the company to cut the cost of its renewable energy. The earlier private placement of Rs 3bn was oversubscribed by 7.25 times. NTPC also plans to raise $ 500m each from its first global rupee bond and green bonds that it plans to sell soon. The move comes at a time when the company is trying to reduce electricity tariff to improve power off-take from its projects. The stock of NTPC is trading up by 0.2%.

As per an article in Livemint, Hero MotoCorp plans to roll out new motorcycles with indigenously developed engines and platforms. The company has developed three engines and platforms in the range of 110-150cc. Currently, the motorcycles have engines manufactured by Honda. The indigenously developed engines will be used in some of its top selling models such as Splendor, Passion and Glamour. The engines have been developed under the supervision of Markus Feichtner, former head of Austrian engine maker AVL's India Technology Centre who joined Hero late last year as its vice-president for research and development (R&D). The stock of Hero MotoCorp is trading up by 0.9%.

Where does the Fed's decision leave us?

One of the most talked affairs these days is the US keeping its interest rates unchanged. It's not just the rate decision. Markets are busy interpreting the message that Fed's decision.

Concerns about a global economic slowdown were one of the stated reasons for this decision. As suggested in an article in Livemint, this is the first time that global conditions have been cited for a US rate decision. Is Fed really concerned about the global economic markets and trying to keep things smooth by not raising rates? A very myopic view may suggest so and may give a false sense of security. However, one should not forget that it is this huge liquidity that creates a perfect environment of asset bubbles. Unfortunately, the impact of Fed's decisions will not be limited to US economy, but will have ramifications for other global economies, India included.

And it is not just US. The ongoing developments in China will impact global markets and economies as well. The uncertainties in China are mounting. Currency devaluation by China confirmed the fear that something is not right with Chinese economy. And what resulted was a global sell off.

All these developments suggest that we are living in a world full of uncertainties. And with so many factors that are out of one's control and impacting the economy, it is better not to speculate on any of them. As far as individual investors are concerned, it would rather make sense to invest your time and energy on finding fundamentally good businesses. And hope for the macro factors to give you enough opportunities to buy these stocks at reasonable valuations. If you can focus on this one aspect and ignore the rest, you are likely to be rewarded well by the markets in the long term.