Market ended a third-consecutive session in gains as sentiment got a boost after US Federal Reserve’s new chairperson Janet Yellen hinted at keeping the monetary policy unchanged under her leadership, in her first congressional testimony late Tuesday.
Yellen said the central bank plans to continue tapering its stimulus program, adding it would take a notable change in economic data for the Fed to change its plans.Fed’s new chairperson however expressed her discomfort over an exceptionally high number of American citizens in part-time jobs and long-term unemployment, despite a huge improvement in job market conditions off-late. This might ease foreign investment rout from emerging markets owing to a potential slow-down of taper if labour market conditions continue to reel under pressure. Yellen attributed the dismal job market scenario on both structural and cyclical problems in the US economy.
Market participants will now look for solace in the macro-economic data set to be released later in the day. The Index of Industrial Production (IIP) for December and the CPI (consumer price inflation) for combined, rural, and urban population in the month of January, by CSO, will point towards the direction the economy is headed.The 30-share Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) Sensex added 85 points higher to 20448 levels and the 50-unit Nifty index of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) added 21 points to close at 6,084 ahead of key macro economic data lined up ahead.
Key indices got support from buying in capital goods, oil & gas and banking stocks. Among the sectoral indices on the BSE: Capital Goods index ended 1.5% higher, Oil & Gas added 1.2% while BSE Bankex was up almost 1%.ICICI Bank, Gail India, ONGC, Larsen & Toubro Reliance, BHEL, RIL and HDFC were the top Sensex gainers today ending 1-3% higher.In the broader markets, the small and midcap indices significantly underperformed the benchmarks today. BSE mid-cap and small-cap indices ended flat against Sensex’s 0.4% up-move.Among other major developments on railway minister Mallikarjun Kharge presented the interim railway budget after the Lok Sabha resumed after being adjourned until afternoon on Wednesday.
Kharge announced inclusion of the north-eastern states of Meghalaya and Arunachal Pradesh on the railway map by FY15, which currently have very low railway connectivity. The rail minister also announced the completion of the 11.2-kilometre-long banihal -qazigund rail link in Jammu & Kashmir, terming it as “landmark project”.
The rupee rose to 62.04 versus its close of 62.22 on Tuesday on bunched-up dollar inflows. Gains in global risk assets hurt the dollar. State-run banks were on a two-day strike starting Monday, leading to more dollar flows hitting the market on Wednesday.
Railway stocks were in focus today after the interim budget was announced by railway minister Mallikarjun Kharge in the parliament on Wednesday. Titagarh Wagons scrip slipped 1.3%, BEML was up 0.1%, Kalindee Rail Nirman scrapped 1.8 % while Kernex Microsystems was down 4%.VST Tillers Tractors ended 11.3% higher to Rs 792.20, after touching its record high on the NSE, on reporting a robust 67% year-on-year (yoy) jump in net profit at Rs 21.58 crore for the third quarter ended December 31, 2013 (Q3), on back of strong operational income. The commercial vehicle maker had profit of Rs 12.92 crore in the same quarter year ago.
Repro India has slipped 7.8% to Rs 152.55 after reporting 41.5% year-on-year (yoy) decline in net profit at Rs 6.45 crore for the third quarter ended December 31, 2013 (Q3), due to higher raw material cost. The company had profit of Rs 11.02 crore in the same quarter year ago.
On the global front, stocks in Asia ended a fourth consecutive session with gains on upbeat trade data from China and an optimistic economic outlook from Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen.
Japan’s Nikkei share average climbed to a 1-1/2 week high on Wednesday, ending 0.6% higher at 14,800.06, its highest closing since January 31; the Topix gained 1.3% to 1,219.60.