Markets end on sour note

Indian markets closed today's session in the red, however, with minor losses. Markets opened flat following international cues and disappointing manufacturing PMI of China but gained a positive moment and gained as much as 200 points in the mid-session. Towards the end, Indian markets fell prey to profit booking. Indian markets closed with BSE Sensex losing about 30 points or 0.1% and NSE-Nifty losing about 8 points or 0.10%. BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap stocks underperformed and lost 0.5% and 0.7%, respectively. Healthcare stocks gained the maximum while Auto and Banks weighed on the markets.

Commodities have started trading with a positive momentum. While the gold prices increased 0.24% or Rs 62; Silver prices gained 0.6% or Rs 219. Gold prices, per 10 grams, are available at Rs 26,260 while Silver prices, per kilogram, are trading at Rs 38000. Crude oil prices gained over 3% or Rs 90 and per barrel are available at Rs 3090. Indian rupee's value against Dollar is trading with slight losses of 0.08% or 0.05 at Rs 62.22. However, Euro gained strength against the Indian Rupee as the Euro zone disclosed better than expected services and manufacturing data. Indian Rupee gained 0.25% or 0.20 and is available at Rs 68.25 against the Euro.

Major economies of Europe are trading with a positive bias as services and manufacturing PMI came in at 54.3 and 51.9 compared to expectations of 53.9 and 51.5 respectively. German equities are trading with strength with gains of 0.5% while French equities are trading with 0.7% gains.

Automobile sector lost the most in today's trading session. Maruti and Mahindra & Mahindra were the top gainers while Tata Motors lost the most with over 3.5%. Tata Motors has announced that it will roll out the fourth generation of Jaguar Land Rover from its Pune Factory. The Indian made Jaguar Land Rover will be delivered from early April 2015. The ex-showroom price of the model is expected to be between Rs 4.873 m and Rs 5.621 m.

Power stocks predominantly traded in the red, however,Jindal Steel and Power traded in the green after the Delhi High Court instructed the Government to re-allocate the coal block given to Coal India back to JSPL. Although this step can be taken as interim relief as counter-affidavit is scheduled for March 26. The Tara coal block and Gare Palma were taken back from JSPL yesterday on the grounds that the bids placed were too low compared to their earlier bids. JSPL has countered the argument saying that they broke no rules pre-set by the Government while bidding.

Indian markets retreat from highs
03:30 pm

Indian markets witnessed significant volatility as the markets made a sharp upsurge before declining shortly after. The BSE-Sensex and NSE-Nifty are currently trading lower by about to 40 points and 10 points respectively. S&P BSE Midcap and S&P BSE Smallcap underperformed throughout the session as midcap stocks decreased 0.5% while smallcap stocks declined 0.7%. Among all the sectoral indices, auto sector solely is trading in the red. Healthcare sector is leading with over 2.5% gains.

Commodities gained in the second half of the trading session. Gold prices, per 10 grams, increased moderately by Rs 32 or 0.12%. It is currently trading at Rs 26,200 levels. Silver prices are trading relatively with more strength with gains of 0.5% or Rs 181. It is available at Rs 37,962 levels. Crude oil prices gained traction as gains increased by 1% in the second half of the trading session. Crude oil prices gained 1.2% or Rs 32 and per barrel are available at Rs 2,965 levels. Indian Rupee continued to decline for the second consecutive trading day. Indian rupee decreased by Re 0.20 or 0.12% and is currently available at Rs 62.20 against the U.S. Dollar.

Pharmaceutical stocks are in favour today with Sun Pharma and Ranbaxy leading the pack with gains in excess of 2%. However, Suven Life Sciences gained more than 7% after the company secured three patents from Canada, Japan and Korea. The patents which the company secured has validity up to 2030 and are involved in curing disorders that are related to Neurodegenrative diseases. Including these patents, Suven has secured a total of 18 grants from Canada, and 16 from Japan and Korea each.

Information technology stocks are currently trading weak. Shares of Wipro gained about 2% after the company announced its plans to introduce new strategies to conquer the digital space. The company further told that it will look at acquisition options in order to build a dedicated organic customer base. For this purpose, the company has introduced a new arm named Wipro Digital. Wipro will be focusing on North America and Europe.

Pharma stocks lead among gainers
01:30 pm

Indian markets gained momentum after providing a weak start in the morning session. BSE Sensex is trading with gains of 125 points while NSE-Nifty is trading higher by 40 points. Healthcare sector has been an outperformer in today's trading session. BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap are trading with moderate losses. While the midcap stocks are trading with a loss of 2 points, smallcap stocks are trading with a loss of 20 points.

On the commodity front, while the gold prices, per 10 grams, have increased by 0.03% or Rs 7, the Silver prices, per kilogram, remains unchanged at Rs 37,780 levels. Crude oil prices have showed strength today, a day after Saudi Arabia issued a statement on not lowering its output. Crude oil prices are trading up by 0.5% or Rs 15 higher. Per barrel crude oil is available at Rs 2945. The Indian rupee against the U.S Dollar dipped slightly. The value of the Indian rupee fell about 0.06% or 0.04 and is currently trading at Rs 62.23 against the U.S Dollar.

Power companies have remained volatile between small losses and profits. JSW energy has gained the most while Torrent Power losing the most. As per a financial daily, Adani group and JSW group are the front runners for acquiring a stake in management in Monnet power which is valued to be around Rs 31 bn. Reportedly, they have ousted Tata Power and an international player from the bids. The deal is likely to be sealed in April. Further, it is also reported that the Monnet Power management believes that the deal will help in repaying some debt. As reported in FY 2014, the company has a huge debt of Rs 100 billion. Monnet Power operates out a 1050 MW coal-based power plant located in Odisha. The company plans to further add 660 MW in the plant. Shares of Monnet Ispat gained over 3.5%.

FMCG companies are trading marginally up during the post noon trading session. Shares of Tilaknagar Industries received a major boost of 9% after an Africa-based company decided to buyout some products of Tilaknagar Industries. The company expects to garner anywhere in between Rs 2.5 bn to Rs 3 bn by selling those products to the Distell group. Distell group is one of the leading producers of liquor. The proceeds from this sale are expected to become a cushion, since the company has huge debt of Rs 8 bn in its books.

Indian Markets Open Flat
09:30 am

Asian markets are trading in the red as below than expected manufacturing PMI for China weighs on the Asian stocks. Chinese PMI came in at 49.2 compared to expectations of 50.6. Investors will be looking towards the manufacturing PMI data for Europe which is due to release in the second session. All Asian stocks are trading in the red. Japanese, Chinese, Hong Kong, Taiwanese and Korean stocks are trading with 0.2%, 1.2%, 0.7%, 0.5% and 0.1% losses respectively.

Indian markets have taken signals from international markets and have opened with a flattish tone. BSE-Sensex is trading with a small gain of 35 points while NSE-Nifty is trading with slight gains of 10 points. Among the sectoral indices, Healthcare sector has gained the maximum while metal sector has been the biggest loser. S&P BSE Midcap and S&P BSE Smallcap indices have gained marginally by 13 and 18 points, respectively.

Trading among commodities has remained flat. While the gold prices, per 10 grams, remained slightly in the green with gains of 0.02% or Rs 4; silver prices, per kilogram, lost Rs 53 or 0.14%. Gold is trading at Rs 26,100 levels while silver is trading at Rs 37,730 levels. Crude oil prices per barrel traded with moderate losses of 0.7% or loss of Rs 20. Per barrel, crude oil is trading at Rs 2,928 levels. Indian rupee declined by 0.20% or 0.07 and is currently trading at Rs 62.20 levels.

Pharma sector is leading with maximum gains today. Shares of Sun Pharma and Natco Pharma are the leading gainers. CCI, the government body which ensures fair trade practices, gave a go ahead signal to the merger between Shasun Pharmaceuticals and Strides Acrolab. The merged entity is expected to garner a sales turnover of Rs 25 bn catapulting it among the top 15 drug making companies in India. Shasun shareholders will be owning 26% of the merged entity. As per the ratio, Shasun shareholders would receive 5 shares of Strides for every 16 shares held by them. Shares of Shasun Pharma gained over 10% after such developments.

The infrastructure company, NCC, has shown optimism towards the revenue expected to be garnered. The company said that it expects revenue to be in the range of Rs 80 bn to Rs 100 bn for fiscal 2016. The topline growth is expected to be between 10% and 12%. For FY15, revenue of Rs 80 bn is expected. For the 9 months ended fiscal 2015, fresh orders to the tune of Rs 64 bn have been aggregated. Share price of the company, however, remained unchanged after these developments.

SEBI sets the stage for IFCs

India continues to remain an attractive investment hot-spot among emerging nations. But ironically, most of the international transactions are still done in financial centers located in Singapore and Dubai. This is because India still lacks an International Financial Centre (IFC). In a move that can pave the way for a global financial hub in India, Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has approved a framework for IFCs.

The guidelines provide for subsidiaries of both domestic and foreign stock exchanges to set up shop in the country and also allow the issue of depository receipts, debt securities, currency & interest rate derivatives, index-based derivatives and other securities by companies incorporated outside India. To provide an enabling environment, SEBI in addition to extending tax concessions has also relaxed the pricing formula for financial institutions in the conversion of stressed loans into equity. Apart from this, the listing and trading of municipal bonds known as 'muni bonds' will be allowed for the first time that will aid in financing the government's smart-city plans. The IFC's will primarily cater to non-resident Indians, foreign investors, institutional investors, and resident Indians eligible under the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA).

And to set the ball rolling, the National Stock Exchange (NSE) and BSE have already given their nod to set up international exchanges at the country's first ever IFC, the Gujarat International Finance Tec-city (GIFT). GIFT is the joint venture between the Gujarat government and IL&FS. It remains to be seen whether other regulatory bodies such as the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and Insurance & Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) will also issue guidelines. This in turn would complete the legal framework required and expedite the set up of IFC's in the country.