IN­DIA’S STOCK INDICES JUMP, RU­PEE GAINS MORE

Bullish trends as Fed­eral Re­serve ex­pected to slow pace of in­ter­est rate hikes

The Gulf Today - Business - - FRONT PAGE -

MUM­BAI: In­dia’s key eq­uity indices jumped on Thurs­day, their fourth straight ses­sion of gains, amid ex­pec­ta­tions the US Fed­eral Re­serve would slow its pace of in­ter­est rate in­creases.

Doubts about the Fed’s fu­ture tight­en­ing also spurred the do­mes­tic cur­rency, with the ru­pee vault­ing 74 paise on Thurs­day’s trade.

The Sen­sex set­tled 453.46 points up or 1.27 per cent at 36,170.41, from its pre­vi­ous close of 35,716.95. It touched an in­tra­day high of 36,253.85 and a low of 35,946.24. The Nifty50 gained 129.85 points or 1.21 per cent to fin­ish at 10,858.70.

Top gain­ers on the Sen­sex were Ba­jaj Auto, which rose over 4 per cent, while Ko­tak Mahin­dra Bank, Mahin­dra and Mahin­dra, and Vedanta gained in a range of 2 to 4 per cent.

Power Grid lost 1.17 per cent the most on the Sen­sex - fol­lowed by NTPC, ONGC and Coal In­dia.

The fi­nan­cials, which led the gains, were up over 1.5 per cent while sell­ing pres­sure was wit­nessed in the ex­port-de­pen­dent IT stocks as the ru­pee strength­ened to Rs69.88 per US dol­lar from its pre­vi­ous close of 70.62. The Brent crude oil price also de­clined to $57.94 a bar­rel.

“In its ear­lier meet­ings, the Fed had a hawk­ish stance, which meant that they could be go­ing in for a rate hike ev­ery quar­ter; but now the Fed seems more flex­i­ble, clear from its dovish re­marks, which have hurt the dol­lar,” Anindya Ban­er­jee, Deputy Vice Pres­i­dent for Cur­rency and In­ter­est Rates with Ko­tak Se­cu­ri­ties, told IANS.

“This is partly the rea­son the ru­pee has gained strength against the US dol­lar. Also, a con­stant de­cline in global crude oil prices has aided the ru­pee’s gains.”

FUEL PRICES DOWN

Petrol prices touched the low­est level in the on­go­ing fi­nan­cial year across the four metro cities - Chennai, Delhi, Kolkata, and Mum­bai.

In the na­tional cap­i­tal, petrol price fell to Rs73.57 per litre against Tues­day’s level of Rs74.07 per litre, ac­cord­ing to data on the In­dian Oil Corp’s web­site. The price in Delhi was the low­est recorded level in FY 2018-19 so far, with the pre­vi­ous low be­ing Rs73.73 in April 1.

In the other metro cities too petrol prices fell by around 50 paise from Tues­day and recorded the low­est prices in the cur­rent fis­cal.

Prices in Kolkata, Mum­bai and Chennai were Rs75.57, Rs79.12 and Rs76.35 per litre, re­spec­tively, against the pre­vi­ous lev­els of Rs76.06, Rs79.62 and Rs76.88 per litre.

The pre­vi­ous lows for the cur­rent fis­cal in Kolkata, Mum­bai and Chennai were Rs76.44, Rs81.59 and Rs76.48 per litre recorded in April 1.

Diesel prices also de­clined on Wed­nes­day in tan­dem with cost of petrol.

In Delhi, Kolkata, Mum­bai and Chennai, diesel was sold for Rs68.49, Rs70.34, Rs71.71 and Rs72.34, re­spec­tively, com­pared to Rs68.89, Rs70.74, Rs72.13 and Rs72.77 per litre.

The fall in do­mes­tic fuel prices comes amid the re­cent de­cline in crude oil prices.

As per the coun­try’s dy­namic pric­ing mech­a­nism, the do­mes­tic fuel prices de­pend upon in­ter­na­tional fuel prices on a 15-day av­er­age and the value of the ru­pee.

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