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Stock Market Live: Indian indices were trading lower on Wednesday, snapping 2 sessions of gains, dragged mainly by banking, financial and metal stocks. However, broad-based selling was witnessed across all key sectors, barring pharma.

Opening Bell: Sensex opens 350 points lower, Nifty below 14,800; banks, metals drag

Indian indices opened lower on Wednesday, snapping 2 sessions of gains, dragged mainly by banking, financial and metal stocks. However, broad-based selling was witnessed across all key sectors. At 9:18 am, the Sensex was down 361 points at 49,775 while the Nifty fell 81 points to 14,763. On the Nifty50 index, Tata Motors, Divi’s Labs, Tata Consumer, NTPC and UltraTech Cement were the top gainers while HDFC Bank, ONGC, Infosys, HDFC and ICICI Bank led the losses.

IT sector in FY21: Here’s a rewind of how the sector performed in the pandemic-hit year

Today is the last trading day of the financial year and as the curtains come down on one of the most unprecedented years which was hit by the COVID-19 pandemic–take a look back on how the year has been and which sectors and themes stood the test of time. IT companies were the big beneficiaries of accelerated digital transformation in all the companies. It saw a v-shaped recovery in earnings, growth bounced back ahead of estimates in Q2, and Q3 saw the best growth in a decade. So consequently growth estimates got rerated higher and now brokerages are expecting the top IT companies to report close to 13-16 percent growth in the coming year versus their earlier estimate of 8-10 percent odd.

China’s strong factory growth in March bolsters economic recovery

China’s manufacturing activity expanded at the quickest pace in three months in March as factories cranked up production after a brief lull during the Lunar New Year holidays, with improving global demand adding further momentum to a solid economic recovery. The official manufacturing Purchasing Manager’s Index (PMI) rose to 51.9 from 50.6 in February, data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed on Wednesday, remaining above the 50-point mark that separates growth from contraction for the 13th straight month. Analysts had expected it to rise to 51.0. Chinese factory activity normally goes dormant during the Lunar New Year break, but this year millions of workers stayed put due to COVID-19 fears, which led to an earlier-than-usual resumption of business at factories.

TCS: Promoter Tata Sons releases pledge on 6.7 cr shares (1.81% equity) on March 26

Oil rises on expectations OPEC+ will maintain supply discipline

Oil prices rose on Wednesday, paring overnight losses a day ahead of a meeting of OPEC and its allies, with investors betting the producers will largely agree to extend their supply curbs into May. Brent crude futures rose 15 cents, or 0.2%, to $64.29 a barrel at 0202 GMT, after falling 1.3% on Tuesday. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures jumped 15 cents, or 0.3%, to $60.70 a barrel, after falling 1.6% in the previous session. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies, together called OPEC+, are set to meet on Thursday, following a month in which oil prices have whipsawed on concerns about extended pandemic lockdowns in Europe, slow vaccine rollouts and rising COVID-19 cases in India and Brazil, pitted against growing optimism on growth in the United States.

Asian stocks poised for the first monthly loss since Oct on the bond route.

Asian stocks were on track for their first monthly loss since last October though markets were up on Wednesday and the U.S. dollar stood tall as investors focused on growing signs of a sure-footed global economic recovery. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside of Japan climbed for a fourth consecutive day to a one-week high of 682.36 points. The index, last up 0.4%, was still a fair distance away from an all-time peak of 745.89 touched just last month. For the month so far, the index is down 1.6% to be on track for its first loss in five months. It is also poised for its smallest quarterly gain since a 21% fall in March 2020 when the coronavirus pandemic brought the world to a standstill.

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