MCX, NCDEX & ICEX revise trade timings for non-agri commodities

All commodities, except agricultural items, will be allowed to trade on the MCX, NCDEX and ICEX between 10am and 11.30pm from Monday to Friday

Commodity exchanges MCX, NCDEX and ICEX have reduced trade timings by 25 minutes for non-agricultural commodities to align with the US daylight saving time, reports PTI.

According to separate statements issued by the three exchanges, all commodities except agricultural items will be allowed to trade between 10am and 11.30pm from Monday to Friday.

At present, trading is on till 11.55pm.

The change in trade timings will be effective from 15th March for all the three exchanges. However, the timing for agro-commodities stays unchanged between 10am and 5pm while on Saturdays all commodities will be traded between 10am to 2pm.

The daylight-saving time begins in the US this weekend and it makes the days seem longer and pave the way to spring and summer.
 

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SBI prefers rights issue to raise capital, says Bhatt

However, the SBI chairman indicated that the Bank is unlikely to go in for a rights issue immediately as it has enough capital and good liquidity position at the moment

The country's largest lender, State Bank of India (SBI), would prefer a rights issue to raise funds for business growth rather than diluting government holding, its chairman OP Bhatt said on Wednesday, reports PTI.

"I want the government to continue to be the major stakeholder in SBI. If there is an opportunity to raise capital quickly and efficiently, we would like to do that (rights issue). It gives us a lot of flexibility in (the) future," Mr Bhatt told reporters in Mumbai.

The government recently tabled the SBI Act Amendment Bill in the Lok Sabha with an aim to reduce state-holding in the bank to 51% from around 59% now.

However, Mr Bhatt indicated that the Bank is unlikely to go in for a rights issue immediately as it has enough capital and good liquidity position at the moment.

SBI has a surplus liquidity of close to Rs50,000 crore, against Rs75,000 crore in December.

"I keep saying that we have a five-year perspective. We do not need capital immediately because our capital adequacy ratio is now around 14%," Mr Bhatt said.

On the merger of State Bank of Indore with the parent, Mr Bhatt said that the proposal needed to be cleared by the Government and Boards of both banks. The entire process may take over a month to get completed.
 

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India sees PE exits worth $757 million in two months

Private equity players in India have offloaded stakes worth $757 million in the first two months of this year driven by a significant recovery in the stock markets and hopes of continuation of this trend

Private equity (PE) players in India have offloaded stakes worth $757 million in the first two months of this year driven by a significant recovery in the stock markets and hopes of continuation of this trend, believe experts.

According to VCCEdge, the financial research platform of VCCircle, January 2010 saw 13 exits worth $282 million, while February witnessed as many as 10 worth $475 million.

"PE funds are under pressure to make some exits before they set out to raise new funds. They will continue to use every opportunity available to exit as long as they see a good return," VCCEdge research director Rohit Madan told PTI.

On a similar note, Reliance Venture Asset Management chief executive Harshal J Shah said, "I think this year will see the opening of the floodgates for exits, though only for the highly qualified ones, and those which have been waiting patiently in the wings for a long time now."

Mr Shah further said that the companies which were waiting in the pipeline might hit the markets this year.

"As the foundation for a strong global recovery builds up, perhaps led by India and China, the performance of the markets this year for such initial public offerings (IPOs) will also portend or forecast how successful that trend will be into the next year and beyond," Mr Shah added.

According to SMC Capitals Equity Head Jagannadham Thunuguntla, "The strange part of the 2009 recovery was that it was very strong in the secondary markets. However, the same enthusiasm couldn't be seen in the primary markets, that is, IPOs. Hence, exits can definitely happen. Unless the enthusiasm returns in the primary markets, the PE/VC funds may find it difficult even to exit."

Some of the top private equity exits of this year include the $323-million exit by Siva Ventures from Aamby Valley Ltd and the $62-million exit by Nalanda Capital from Sun TV Network, the VCCEdge report said.

The PE exits were driven by the sharp rise in the Bombay Stock Exchange's benchmark index Sensex, which is currently hovering around the 17,000-level and is witnessing good participation both from domestic as well as foreign institutional investors.
 

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