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NSE Intra-day chart (19 February 2024)
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Market Commentary 20 February 2024
Benchmarks to get negative start amid mixed cues from Asian peers


Indian equity benchmarks continued northward journey on the fifth consecutive session on Monday, led by gains in Consumer Durables and Telecom stocks. Markets started positively but gyrated between gains and losses in the initial hours as some cautiousness came after the latest data by Reserve Bank of India (RBI) showed that India's foreign exchange reserves dipped by $5.24 billion to $617.23 billion for the week ending on February 9.  However, key gauges soon gained traction in late morning deals, as traders found support with data showing that India's outward foreign direct investment (FDI) commitments rose by 25.7 per cent on a year-on-year (Y-o-Y) basis to $2.09 billion in January 2024, compared to over $1.66 billion in January 2023. Some support also came as the commerce ministry decided to extend export benefits under the Remission of Duties and Taxes on Exported Products (RoDTEP) scheme for companies in the special economic zones (SEZs) and export-oriented units (EOUs). Sentiments remained up-beat in afternoon deals, taking support from India's G-20 Sherpa and former NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant's statement that India needs to grow at an annual rate of 9-10 per cent for around three decades and constant innovations to become a $35 trillion economy by 2047. Adding to the optimism, a private report stated that the government is mulling over introducing a new production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme for the pharmaceutical sector to boost the production of key chemicals critical to the manufacture of active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs). In doing so, it aims to reduce Indian companies' dependence on China for such supplies. Besides, the exchange data showed Foreign Portfolio Investors (FPIs) were net buyers as they purchased securities worth Rs 253.28 crore on February 16. But, some gains got trimmed in final minutes of trade due to weak global cues as fading hopes of early rate cuts weighed on sentiment.  Finally, the BSE Sensex rose 281.52 points or 0.39% to 72,708.16 and the CNX Nifty was up by 81.55 points or 0.37% to 22,122.25.  


The US markets were closed on Monday on account of Washington's Birthday.


Forex markets remained shut on Monday on account of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Jayanti.


The FIIs as per Friday's data were net buyers in both equity and debt segments. In equity segment, the gross buying was of Rs 15021.09 crore against gross selling of Rs 13878.04 crore, while in the debt segment, the gross purchase was of Rs 1553.00 crore with gross sales of Rs 694.82 crore. Besides, in the hybrid segment, the gross buying was of Rs 21.83 crore against gross selling of Rs 6.89 crore.


The US markets were closed on Monday on account of Washington's Birthday. Asian markets are trading mixed in early deals on Tuesday amid investors parsed Chinese central bank's decisions on key lending rates. China's central bank has cut the benchmark five-year loan prime rate for the first time since June, while leaving the one-year tenure unchanged. Indian equity markets ended higher on Monday ahead of the RBI and US FOMC's latest meeting minutes to be out later in the week. Today, markets are likely to make negative start amid mixed cues from the other Asian markets. Foreign fund outflows likely to dampen sentiments. Foreign institutional investors (FIIs) net sold shares worth Rs 754.59 crore on February 19, provisional data from the NSE showed. Cautiousness may also come in as oil prices hold near 3-week highs on Middle East tensions, China demand. However, some respite may come later in the day as Union minister Hardeep Singh Puri said Infrastructure will be a vital component for India to become a developed country by 2047. He asserted that the country will be the third-largest construction market globally by next year. Highlighting the vitality of the construction industry for the Indian economy, he said the construction industry is among the fastest growing industries in the country. Traders may also get some encouragement as Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal exuded confidence that the Reserve Bank will cut interest rates as inflation is under control. Goyal said that the economic fundamentals of the country are strong and inflation is under check. Meanwhile, government think tank NITI Aayog has pitched for tax reforms, mandatory saving plan, and housing plan for elderly in India, as the population of senior citizens is projected to reach 19.5 per cent of the country's population by 2050. There may some be buzz in tyre and rubber industries' stocks as the government is not looking at reducing import duty on rubber as of now amid a certain section of the industry demanding a duty cut. This is because the government believes the differential between local and international prices has been maintained.


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  • Larsen & Toubro's wholly owned subsidiary -- L&T Realty Developers has incorporated a wholly owned subsidiary namely LH Uttarayan Premium Realty on February 17, 2024.
  •  Power Grid's Board has approved investment worth Rs 514.66 crore.
  •  Bharti Airtel has launched two new stores in the city of Jammu.
  •  Tata Power has received Letter of Intent (LoI) from REC Power Development and Consultancy (a wholly-owned subsidiary of REC) to acquire Jalpura Khurja Power Transmission, a project special purpose vehicle (SPV).
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