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NSE Intra-day chart (08 March 2019)
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Market Commentary 11 March 2019
Benchmarks to make negative start following weak global cues


Friday turned-out to be a lackluster day of trade for Indian equity benchmarks, with frontline gauges ending the session with marginal losses. Traders remain concerned throughout the day tracking weakness in global markets after the European Central Bank slashed its economic growth forecast, citing external uncertainties. Markets started the session on pessimistic note, as market participants remained concern about a report that the government may be staring at higher-than-projected deficit for the current fiscal with country's direct tax revenue expected to fall short by Rs 60,000 to 70,000 crore over the revised target of Rs 12 lakh crore for FY19. As per the report, the direct tax revenue growth is at 12.2 per cent so far as against revised full year aim of 19.8 per cent. Anxiety also prevailed amongst investors, as CARE Ratings in its report said that India has of late seen a slight revival in the investment cycle, but that is primarily driven by the increased government spending, and not so much by the private sector. There are also concerns such as a sharp rise in number of investment projects dropped midway. However, losses remain capped as some solace came with Commerce and Industry Minister Suresh Prabhu's statement that the country's goods export will touch $330 billion in 2018-19, which will be the highest ever. He said the country's merchandise exports have seen high growth in the past six years through sector-specific interventions, focused export promotion initiatives, and quick resolution of issues. Meanwhile, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) notified the norms for banks with regards to two per cent interest subvention or subsidy for short-term crop loans during 2018-19 and 2019-20. The Centre has already approved the scheme. Under the scheme, an additional two per cent interest subvention is provided to farmers repaying loans promptly. Finally, the BSE Sensex shed 53.99 points or 0.15% to 36,671.43, while the CNX Nifty was down by 22.80 points or 0.21% to 11,035.40.


Extending their losses for fifth straight sessions, the US markets settled lower on Friday after a disappointing jobs report from US and a slump in Chinese exports, the world's second-largest economy reported a 20% drop in February exports after a 9.1% gain in January, added to concerns about slowing global growth.  Employment in the US showed only a slight increase in the month of February, according to a report released by the Labor Department. The Labor Department said non-farm payroll employment edged up by 20,000 jobs in February after jumping by an upwardly revised 311,000 jobs in January. Street had expected employment to increase by about 180,000 jobs compared to the spike of 304,000 jobs originally reported for the previous month. The much weaker than expected job growth in February represented the worst month since the loss of 18,000 jobs in September of 2017, when employment was impacted by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. Despite the much weaker than expected job growth, the unemployment rate dropped to 3.8 percent in February from 4.0 percent in January. The unemployment rate had been expected to dip to 3.9 percent. Meanwhile, after reporting a steep drop in new residential construction in the US in the previous month, the Commerce Department released a report showing housing starts rebounded by much more than anticipated in the month of January. The report said housing starts soared by 18.6 percent to an annual rate of 1.230 million in January after plunging by 14.0 percent to a revised rate of 1.037 million in December. Single-family housing stars surged up by 25.1 percent to a rate of 926,000 in January, while multi-family starts climbed by 2.4 percent to a rate of 304,000. Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 22.99 points or 0.09 percent to 25450.24, S&P 500 plunged 5.86 points or 0.21 percent to 2743.07 and Nasdaq was down by 13.32 points or 0.18 percent to 7408.14.


Crude oil futures end lower on Friday as a downbeat employment report from the US and trade data from China reinforced worries about global economic growth and energy demand.  However, oil prices pared much of their earlier losses to score a gain for the week as a third-consecutive weekly decline in US oil-drilling rigs pointed to a potential fall in domestic production activity. Active US rigs drilling for oil fell by nine to 834 this week. Benchmark crude oil futures for April dropped 59 cents or 1 percent to settle at $56.07 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. May Brent crude lost 56 cents or 0.8 percent to settle at $65.74 a barrel on London's Intercontinental Exchange.


Snapping 3-day winning streak, Indian rupee ended weaker against the American currency on Friday, as demand for the American unit from importers and banks picked up. Traders remain worried with a report that the government may be staring at higher-than-projected deficit for the current fiscal with country's direct tax revenue expected to fall short by Rs 60,000 to 70,000 crore over the revised target of Rs 12 lakh crore for FY19. As per the report, the direct tax revenue growth is at 12.2 per cent so far as against revised full year aim of 19.8 per cent. The weak trade in the local equity market also adversely impacted local forex trade. However, losses were limited as traders found some support with Commerce and Industry Minister Suresh Prabhu's statement that the country's goods export will touch $330 billion in 2018-19, which will be the highest ever. On the global front, dollar slipped to an eight-day low against the yen on Friday as the region's equities slid on the back of risk aversion in the broader markets. Finally, the rupee ended at 70.14, 14 paise weaker from its previous close of 70.00 on Thursday.


The FIIs as per Friday's data were net buyers in equity segment, while they were net sellers in debt segment. In equity segment, the gross buying was of Rs 5591.64 crore against gross selling of Rs 4517.54 crore, while in the debt segment, the gross purchase was of Rs 1026.86 crore with gross sales of Rs 1736.51 crore. Besides, in the hybrid segment, the gross buying was of Rs 16.02 crore against gross selling of Rs 16.37 crore.


The US markets ended lower on Friday following a weak February US jobs report. Asian markets are trading mostly in red on Monday amid growing concerns over a global economic slowdown after important data in the United States and China missed expectations last week. Indian markets snapped four-day winning streak and ended lower amid weak global cues as investors fretted about slowing global growth. Today, the start of the new week is likely to be pessimistic, tracking negative global cues amid growth concerns following weak global macro data. The US economy created only 20,000 jobs in February, compared with expectations of nonfarm payrolls rising by 180,000. It was the weakest reading since September 2017. Besides, on the domestic front, investors will be eyeing industrial production and inflation numbers to be release later in the week. Industrial production and retail inflation data will be released on March 12, whereas whole inflation figures will be out on March 14. However, traders may get some support later in the day with Economic Affairs Secretary Subhash Chandra Garg expressing confidence that fiscal deficit target of 3.4 per cent for 2018-19 would be met as shortfall in indirect tax collection would be compensated by lower expenditure. Some support may also come with Commerce and Industry minister Suresh Prabhu's statement that the government has set a target of attracting $100 billion in foreign direct investments over the next two years. The minister said the government is conducting a sector analysis for FDI investments and is preparing suitable policies which will help in bringing foreign funds. Meanwhile, Industry lobby CII released a Suggested Election Manifesto for political parties to achieve an average growth rate of 8 per cent per annum in the next five years. It covers a range of subjects including agriculture, education, health, infrastructure, manufacturing, technology as well as environment. Besides, the Election Commission said the Lok Sabha elections will be conducted in seven phases starting from April 11 to May 19 and counting of all phases will be held on May 23. There will be some buzz in the banking sector stocks with the Reserve Bank of India's statement that it has imposed penalties worth Rs 71 crore on 36 public, private and foreign banks for non-compliance with various directions on time-bound implementation and strengthening of SWIFT operations. SWIFT is a global messaging software used for transactions by financial entities. The massive Rs 14,000-crore fraud at the PNB was a case of misuse of this messaging software. There will be some reaction in auto sector stocks with report that from April, up to 10 lakh electric two-wheelers will get subsidy of Rs 20,000 each, while 35,000 fully electric cars can avail benefit of Rs 1.5 lakh under the newly notified FAME-II scheme, reducing their prices for buyers.


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  • L&T's wholly owned subsidiary -- LTHE has won a significant order from ONGC. 
  • ONGC has inked a contract for the prolific Chinnewala Tibba gas field in Rajasthan, which it had discovered around 15 years ago but was taken away and auctioned by the government. 
  • IOC's Liquefied Natural Gas import terminal at Ennore in Tamil Nadu will help fast-track its city gas distribution plans. 
  • Infosys has released research which explores the current state of workforce development efforts in the United States.
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