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As global cash shrinks, party may be over for Indian equities

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Mumbai:The party’s over for Indian equities, with stocks headed for another tough year as a shrinking global cash pool dims prospects of an improving economy and expected recovery in company earnings boosting stocks, according to Bank of America Merrill Lynch.

“Imagine you are at a New Year party and happy to find out that there’s more room to dance but suddenly you realize that’s because everyone is leaving and the music has stopped,” Sanjay Mookim, BofAML’s India equity strategist, said at his office in Mumbai. “Indian equities are somewhat like that at the moment,” he said.

Still, purchasing by local funds made India the best-performing equity market in Asia last year, outperforming even the U. S. and the MSCI emerging markets index in local currency terms and leapfrogging Germany to become the seventh-largest in the world. The MSCI India Index trades at 17.2 times its estimated 12-month earnings, about 59 percent higher that the MSCI Emerging Markets Index.

 

“The expansion of multiples that has happened is not because the market has discovered growth, it has happened because of the lower cost of capital everywhere and that seven or eight year trajectory has turned,” Mookim said.

Share prices have rallied far ahead of earnings estimates in the last few years and Mookim expects them to give up some of those gains as liquidity starts tightening.

Even as BofAML expects India’s NSE Nifty 50 Index to end 2019 at 11,300 — a 4 percent gain for the year — it won’t be a smooth ride. The key equity gauges may fall by “a double-digit percentage” in the first half, possibly triggered by political rhetoric preceding national elections expected around May, before stabilizing with the formation of a new government.

Mookim advises buying stocks such as consumer companies and farm-equipment makers and financiers that will gain from the government’s expected spending to boost rural incomes. He also prefers larger lenders as they are nearing the end of the bad-loan cycle and will report improved profits over the next few years. “If you have to be in India, banks are the only things that look okay; they are the only remaining standing opportunity in this market,” he said.


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MPC to meet six times during 2019-20: RBI

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Mumbai: The Monetary Policy Committee (MPC), which decides on key interest rates, will meet six times during the next financial year, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) said.

The first meeting of the six-member MPC to decide on the first bi-monthly monetary policy statement for 2019-20 will be held from April 2 to 4.

The policy will be announced on April 4. Headed by RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das, the committee also includes two representatives from the central bank and three external members.

 

The external members are Indian Statistical Institute professor Chetan Ghate, Delhi School of Economics Director Pami Dua and Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad professor Ravindra H Dholakia.

According to the schedule provided by the RBI, the second meeting of the MPC in the next fiscal will be held on June 3, 4 and 6; third meeting (August 5-7); fourth meeting (October 1, 3 and 4); fifth meeting (December 3-5) and sixth meeting (February 4-6, 2020).

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SBI raises Rs 1,251 crore by issuing Basel III-compliant bonds

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New Delhi: The country’s largest lender State Bank of India (SBI) said it has raised Rs 1,251.30 crore by issuing Basel III-compliant bonds.

“The Committee of Directors for Capital Raising at its meeting held today on 22 March 2019 deliberated and accorded approval to allot 12,513 non-convertible, taxable, perpetual, subordinated, unsecured Basel lll-compliant additional tier-I bonds, for inclusion in additional tier-I capital of the bank…aggregating to Rs 1,251.30 crore,” SBI said in a regulatory filing.

The bonds with a face value of Rs 10 lakh each bears a coupon rate of 9.45 per cent per anum payable annually with call option after 5 years or any anniversary date thereafter, it said. The bonds were subscribed on Friday, it added.

 

State Bank of India (SBI) also said the central board of the bank at its meeting held has accorded its approval for extension of validity period for raising equity capital of up to Rs 20,000 crore from market by way of follow-on public offer, qualified institutional placement, preferential allotment, rights issue or any other mode or a combination of these till March 31, 2020.

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Sebi fines 4 entities Rs 27 lakh for fraudulent trading in BSE stock options

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New Delhi: Markets regulator Sebi imposed a total penalty of Rs 27 lakh on four entities for indulging in fraudulent trade in illiquid stock options segment of BSE.

Umapati Oil Mill and Ginning Factory, Yudhbir Chhibbar, Kasturbhai Mayabhai Pvt Ltd and Vimladevi Shyamsunder Khetan are the four entities, according to Sebi’s separate orders.

fter observing a large-scale reversal of trades in the BSE’s illiquid stock options segment, Sebi conducted a probe from April 2014 to September 2015.

 

Following the probe, the regulator found that the trades executed by the entities were not genuine as they were reversed within few seconds with same counter parties with significant difference in price, resulting in profit to the entities.

Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) said it was a deliberate attempt to deal in such a fashion and not a mere coincidence.

The trades executed by the entities were not genuine and created an appearance of artificial trading volumes, thereby violating PFUTP (Prohibition of Fraudulent and Unfair Trade Practices) regulations, Sebi noted.

Accordingly, a fine of Rs 8.7 lakh and Rs 8.4 lakh were imposed on Yudhbir Chhibbar and Vimladevi, respectively while a penalty of Rs 5 lakh each was levied on Umapati Oil Mill and Kasturbhai Mayabhai Pvt Ltd, totalling Rs 27.1 lakh.

In a separate order, Sebi imposed a total fine of Rs 6 lakh on four promoters of Artech Power Products for delayed disclosures to exchanges regarding their change in the shareholding in the company.

Ranjith Vijayan, I V Vijayan, Repsy Vijayan and Resmi Vijayan are the four promoters, according to Sebi’s order.

The promoters have deprived the vital information to the public by non-disclosure /delayed disclosure as mandated by the Takeover Regulations, Sebi noted.

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