Headlines (01 October 2008)


GENERAL

1)With the Indo-US nuclear deal still winding its way through the US Congress, India on Tuesday went ahead and signed a landmark  civil nuclear cooperation agreement with France, ending 34 years  of nuclear isolation.

Indian Express

ECONOMY

2)AS THE impact of the US financial turbulence spread across the  world, finance minister P Chidambaram and capital market regulator  Sebi sought to assure investors that the Indian market is “sound  and attractive” and promised action against violators.  Even as stock market indices stayed in the red in early trade and heads of  Asian states tried to convince investors of the soundness of their economies, Mr Chidambaram hurriedly called a press briefing to assure  investors that the authorities were keeping a close watch on the developments and that if any policy tweaking was needed, it would be  done.

ET

CORPORATE / INDUSTRY

3)Reliance Industries (RIL), the country’s largest company by market  capitalisation, may add around $300 million or around Rs 1,400 crore,  to its turnover in the October-December quarter as it begins sale of  crude oil from its field in the Krishna-Godavari basin to Indian refiners.

BS

4)Ashok Leyland Ltd, India’s second-largest bus and truck maker, has  formed a 50:50 joint venture with John Deere for construction equipment, it said on Tuesday, to tap a growing focus on infrastructure.  The venture will start production in early 2010 and is scouting for  locations for a manufacturing plant, Ashok Leyland said in a statement that did not disclose financial details.

FE

5)State-run power equipment major Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd(BHEL)  on Tuesday announced it has bagged a Rs 990-crore order to set up a  500 MW (2×250 MW) thermal power plant in Rajasthan. The order has been placed by Rajasthan Rajya Vidyut Utpadan Nigam Ltd for setting  up two units of 250 MW each as an expansion project of Chhabra Thermal Power Station, a company statement said.

BL

MONEY & BANKING

6)The Reserve Bank of India on Tuesday clarified that ICICI Bank had sufficient liquidity, including in its current account with the  apex bank to meet the requirements of its depositors.”The Reserve  Bank of India is monitoring the developments and has arranged to provide adequate cash to ICICI Bank to meet the demands of its cus-  tomers at its branches and ATMs,” the RBI stated.  “ICICI Bank and  its subsidiary banks abroad are well capitalised,” the RBI added.

Hindu

7)INDIA’S largest private bank – ICICI Bank which has been battling  rumours over the past few days relating to its financial health says  that it will continue to put the brakes on its retail loan business  and slow down the pace of its global lending.

ET

INSURANCE

8)Life Insurance Council had decided to continue the offer of group  insurance cover on mutual fund products.  Earlier, the council, the  apex body of life insurance companies, had decided to discountinue the offer of group life insurance covers to unit-linked products sold  by mutual funds, from October 1.

BL

9)Fitch Ratings has affirmed ICICI Prudential Life Insurance’s national Insurer Financial Strength rating at ‘AAA(ind)’ with stable  outlook.  The rating continues to reflect the ongoing operational and  capital support received from the shareholders, capitalisation, market position built by the firm in the last seven years and its strong  focus on introduction of best business practices, a release said.

BS

MARKETS

10)Domestic equities that opened sharply lower on Tuesday following  the failure of the US financial bailout package, bounced back on reassurance from the financial regulators.  Marketmen were quite resigned to a massive fall, but back-to-back statements from the Finance Minister, the Reserve Bank of India, and the SEBI Chairman  on the health of the domestic markets averted that.  Tracking the  overnight US markets, which fell 8 to 9 per cent, the Sensex fell  442 points to a low of 12,153 immediately upon opening.  However,  it ended the day with a gain of 2 per cent.  The Nifty closed 1.8  per cent higher.

BL

11)The Bombay Stock Exchange(BSE) Sensex today advanced, ending  a three-day, 8 per cent slump.  ICICI Bank led gains after some investors judged the recent decline excessive.  ICICI Bank, the nation’s  second-largest lender, gained 8.6 per cent, the most in more than a week. Tata Consultancy Services, the largest software developer,  rose 7.4 per cent, halting a six-day, 19 per cent drop.

BS

12)Amidst the rising volatility in exchange rates, exchange-traded  currency futures (ETCFs) are catching the eye of investors.  In the  one month since its launch on the National Stock Exchange, the open  interest in ETCFs have jumped by 566% to 90871 contracts as on Tuesday from 13,641 contracts on August 29.

FE

IPO

13)Mahanagar Gas (MGL) – a joint-venture between GAIL India, British  Gas and the Maharashtra government – is planning an initial public  offer(IPO), sources have revealed to FE.  At the sidelines of the company’s 13th annual general meeting in Mumbai, MGL sources said  that the issue will soon be taken up with all equityholders.

FE

BUYBACK

14)DLF, the country’s largest developer, is expected to start implementing its Rs 1,100-crore plan to buy back shares from next week onwards,  according to sources.  The DLF board today approved the company’s announcement on buyback of shares.

BS

COMMODITIES

15)Turnover at Indian commodity bourses rose 42.97% to Rs 23.05 lakh  crore during the April 1-September 15 period, from the year-ago period,  data from regulator Forward Markets Commission(FMC) showed.  The turnover rose 70.9% to Rs 2.21 lakh crore in the fortnight ending September 15, FMC data showed on Tuesday.

FE

16)Due to favourable weather conditions alongwith a wider application  of technology and weed management, the country’s soyabean production is expected to cross the 10-million tonne(MT) mark during 2008, a  crop suvey conducted by a trade bod on Tuesday revealed.  According  to Soyabean Processor Assocation of India(Sopa), major soybean-  growing states like Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Maharashtra and Andhra  Pradesh are expected to produce 10.8 million tonne of soyabean against  9.4 million tonne harvested during 2007, posting an increase of more  than 14%.

FE

17)Pepper futures on Tuesday moved up strongly on buying support and reports of tight supply position in all the origins.  October contract  shot up by Rs 330 a quintal to Rs 13,929 and for the first time after  several weeks, converged with the spot price.  November and December  contracts increased by Rs 313 and Rs 305 to Rs 14,140 and Rs 14,364  a quintal respectively on the NCDEX.

BL

18)Commodity markets in India, barring gold, opened sharply down Tuesday trailing the weakness in other markets as the US Congress’s rejection of the $770-billion bailout package that triggered fears of a general economic slowdown as poor liquidity could pull down prices.  Gold,  however, rose during the day as investors flocked to the previous yel- low metal because of its appeal as a safe haven investment and at one  time, MCX December gold traded at Rs 13,542 per 10 gm, not too far  from the highest level recorded at Rs 13,764 on July 15.

FE

REAL ESTATE

19)Parsvnath Developers Ltd(PDL) has launched a group housing project,  Parsvnath Pratishtha, at Pune.  “Presence of educational institutes,  universities, IT and major automobile companies has resulted in influx of population in Pune.  This increase in population has lead to  burgeoning demand for qualitative residential properties in close vicinity of their work places,” Pradeep Jain, chairman, Parsvnath  Developers.

FE

20)Sunil Mantri Realty, a Mumbai-based real estate developer, plans  to invest Rs 1,000 crore to take up residential projects in Karnataka.  Addressing a press conference, Sunil Mantri, chairman, Sunil Mantri  Realty, said. “The company will invest Rs 500 crore by 2009 and the  remaining by 2011.  In the first phase, Rs 400 crore will be spent  on Bangalore.”

BS

BUSINESS PROCESS OUTSOURCING

21)INDIA’S largest BPO provider, Genpact, is likely to take a hit from  the sale of Wachovia’s assets to Citigroup.  Genpact had a strong  relationship with Wachovia and was chosen by the US bank to set up a dedicated centre that would function as its back-office.

ET

INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY

22)When three big financial institutions from Europe sought government  support on Monday, it deepened the worries of Indian IT companies  which earlier hoped Europe would drive their growth when America  failed.  The main concern for IT firms is that Monday’s development  could be a symptom of an impending slowdown in Europe, which con-  tributes 20-30% of revenues of top six Indian IT companies.  In the past, these companies consciously tried to expand their European business to spread their risk.

ET

23)POLARIS Software Lab announced on Tuesday it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire US-based insurance product and component  services company SEEC in an all-cash deal in the next three to five weeks.  This would help the Chennai-based company gain access to the  company’s IP products, business trademarks, brands and infrastructure facilities.

ET

INTERNATIONAL

24)Recession fears grew and investors raced for safe havens after US  lawmakers’ shock rejection of a $700 billion rescue plan for the financial industry, with Asian stocks skidding after Wall Street’s biggest fall since the crash of 1987.  Violent market reaction increased pressure on Washington to approve compromise bailout legislation  and fueled expectations that the Fed would cut interest rates on or  before its next meeting, which is scheduled for October 29.

FE

25)The US Senate will try to salvage a $700 billion financial-rescue  package after the measure was defeated in the House of Representatives. The lawmakers won’t have a lot of room to negotiate.  While  they need to tweak the legislation enough to win over reluctant Re-  publicans, they’ll risk losing votes from Democrats if they veer too  far from the delicate compromise that congressional leaders ham-  mered out with the US Treasury.

FE

26)Oil rose towards $98 a barrel on Tuesday, rebounding after a near  10 per cent drop in the previous session in response to the rejection  by US law makers of a financial sector rescue plan. 

BS

FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE BROWSE THROUGH THE FOLLOWING SITES.

Karvy Consultants Ltd www.karvy.com
  www.khojhyderabad.com
  www.indiacorporateadvisor.com
  www.karvycomtrade.com (Commodities)
KARVY Global Services Ltd www.KARVYGlobal.com
KARVY Realty (India) Limited www.karvyrealty.com
Economic Times  www.economictimes.com
The Financial Express www.financialexpress.com
Business Line www.businessline.in
Business Standard www.business-standard.com
The Times of India  www.timesofindia.com
The Hindu www.hindu.com
Deccan Chronicle  www.deccan.com
The New Indian Express  www.newindpress.com

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