We had mentioned in Monday’s closing report that Nifty, Sensex might continue to head higher. The major indices of the Indian stock markets were range-bound on Tuesday and closed with minor gains over Monday’s close. On the NSE, there were 548 advances, 1,213 declines and 297 unchanged. The trends of the major indices in the course of Tuesday’s trading are given in the table below:
Ahead of a three-day RBI monetary policy review meet, set to start later in the day, Sensex and Nifty logged mild gains on Tuesday. Capital goods, FMCG and metal stocks declined while energy, IT (information technology) and banking stocks surged. At 2.54 p.m., the S&P BSE Sensex traded 78.22 points or 0.21% up from its previous close of 36,582.74 after touching a high of 36,727.83 and a low of 36,495.83. The broader Nifty traded at 10,935.35, up 23.10 points or 0.21%. Stock-wise, IndusInd Bank, Bajaj-Auto, HeroMoto Corp, Mahindra and Mahindra and Maruti Suzuki gained in the range of 1% to 3%. In contrast, Tata Motors, Tata Motors (DVR), Tata Steel, Coal India and ONGC declined in the range of 1% to 3%.
Shares of telecom major Bharti Airtel Ltd slipped over 4% on Tuesday after ratings agency Moody's downgraded some notes of the company by the subscribers. After falling up to 4.33% in early trade, the company's stock recovered to trade at Rs306.20 per share, down 0.13% during the afternoon session on the BSE.
Moody's downgraded the senior unsecured rating for Airtel and backed senior unsecured notes issued by subsidiary Bharti Airtel Int'l (the Netherlands) to 'Ba1', or junk rating, from 'Baa3'. The American rating agency also withdrew the company's 'Baa3' issuer rating and said the outlook was negative.
"The downgrade reflects uncertainty as to whether or not the company's profitability, cash flow situation and debt levels can improve sustainably and materially, given the competitive dynamics in the Indian telecom market," Moody's Vice-President Annalisa DiChiara said in a note. "A significant recovery in cash flow from the core Indian mobile segment is needed to strengthen the company's credit quality and support greater financial flexibility," DiChiara said. Moody's, at the same time, assigned a Ba1 corporate family rating (CFR) to Airtel, saying it reflects the company's solid market position in the high growth Indian mobile market. "We recognise the company has raised $1.45 billion from the pre-IPO of its African operations, with around $1 billion used to repay debt on consolidated basis," the ratings agency said. "The rating outlook could be stabilised if Bharti strengthens its credit profile, with stabilisation of its core Indian mobile and non-mobile services," it added. Moody's estimated that the profitability of Bharti's Indian mobile segment will remain low over the next several quarters in the absence of a fundamental change in the pricing of mobile services, together with proportional shift in the composition of Bharti's subscriber base to high-end 4G customers. Bharti Airtel last week said its net income for the October-December quarter declined nearly 72% to Rs86 crore due to continuing pricing pressure. The company has, however, taken steps to improve revenues and profitability including its minimum recharge plans, the Moody's report added. Bharti Airtel shares closed at Rs307.00, up 0.15% on the NSE.
Budget airlines SpiceJet on Monday said it will launch a daily non-stop flight service between Hyderabad and Saudi Arabia's Jeddah from March 25. According to the airline, Jeddah will be its ninth international destination and third destination in the Middle East. The airline said that it will service the route using its new 189 seater Boeing 737 MAX aircraft. "The new service will enable SpiceJet to provide over 2500 seats per week on the sector," the airline said in a statement. "To mark this important launch, SpiceJet has announced a special fare of Rs13,499 (all-inclusive) for Hyderabad-Jeddah and Rs10,799 (all inclusive) for Jeddah-Hyderabad." SpiceJet shares closed at Rs77.10, down 1.47% on the NSE.
State-owned lender IDBI Bank's net loss widened during the quarter ended December 31, 2018 due to higher provisioning for non-performing assets (NPAs). According to the state-run lender, its net loss in the three months ended December 31, 2018 widened to Rs4,185.48 crore from a net loss of Rs1,524.31 crore reported for the same period of the last financial year. "Net loss stands at Rs4,185 crore for QE Dec 2018 on account of higher provisioning," the bank said in a statement. The lender's total provisions for NPA during the quarter under review increased by 39.51% to Rs5,074.80 crore, compared to Rs3,637.49 crore in Q3FY18. As per the lender's statement, gross NPA and net NPA ratio improved to 29.67% and 14.01%, respectively, as on December 31, 2018 as against 31.78% and 17.30%, respectively, as on September 30, 2018. "Slippages during the quarter were Rs2,211 crore which were lowest during the last 7 quarters," the statement said. IDBI shares closed at Rs46.70, down 7.52% on the NSE.
Exide Industries on Monday posted a net profit of Rs155.04 crore in the third quarter of the current fiscal, up marginally as against Rs154.27 crore in the same period last year. Its net turnover for the quarter under review was at Rs2,496.84 crore, up by 9.59% from Rs2,278.29 crore in the corresponding quarter of the previous fiscal. The battery maker's Managing Director and CEO G. Chatterjee said that volumes in automotive, motorcycles, UPS and solar batteries in the third quarter have grown quite well. The company is focusing on cost control and technology upgradation as strategies to improve the bottom-line. Exide Industries shares closed at Rs220.25, down 1.81% on the NSE.
The top gainers and top losers of the major indices are given in the table below:
The closing values of the major Asian indices are given in the table below: