18 February Markets steady ahead of Bank of Japan meeting

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gsr-12dfsxgfs1Mumbai: The interim budget presented by the finance minister aimed to boost manufacturing and consumer durables demand which has taken a hit in the current slowdown. P. Chidambaram announced cuts in excise duties and an increase in import tariffs to revive domestic manufacturing across the board.

Global stocks gained ground for the ninth session in a row as optimism over China’s growth prospects and waning emerging market tensions boosted investor risk appetite, reports Financial Times. US markets provided no lead on Monday as they were shut for a national holiday.

Asian markets were trading mixed ahead of Bank of Japan’s policy meeting. Most economists expect Bank of Japan (BoJ) to ease further within a few months and keep its policy rates steady following weak GDP data in the fourth quarter. Japan’s Nikkei Stock Average gained 0.8%, while China’s Shanghai Composite was down 0.3% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was down 0.4%.

In India, Suzlon Energy Ltd shares will be under pressure after it wrote down a Rs.250 crore charge on the Big Sky farm in Illinois after reassessing the amount expected to recover from a 240-megawatt, turbine-supply deal.

Oil and Natural Gas Corp. Ltd (ONGC) shares will be in the limelight as its overseas arm ONGC Videsh Ltd signed two production sharing contracts to explore oil and gas in Bangladeshi waters.

Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Ltd shares will be in focus after it won Ennore Port Ltd’s terminal bid to build a container-loading facility, reports Mint. Adani Ports had cited a revenue share of 37% for building the new terminal with an investment of Rs.1,270 crore.

Infrastructure Leasing and Financial Services Ltd, the non-banking finance subsidiary of Infrastructure Leasing and Financial Services has received commitments from five local public sector insurance companies to investRs.750 crore in its infrastructure debt fund by 20 March, reports Mint.

Oil marketing companies have bought a record 720 million litres of ethanol from the India’s cash-strapped sugar mills for blending, in an attempt to curb fossil fuel imports, reports Economic Times. The purchases would help the OMCs hit a government-mandated goal of 5% blending of ethanol in gasoline for the first time in the current fiscal since its introduction seven years ago.

Lastly, after 76 days in jail, one of India’s most prominent journalists, Tarun Tejpal, was officially charged Monday with raping and sexually harassing a female subordinate, reports Wall Street Journal India.