Mumbai: Equities and commodities around the world rallied on hopes of an agreement between political parties to avoid the fiscal cliff—$600 billion in tax increases and spending cuts which will start in January and threatens to send the US economy back into recession. Upbeat housing data also added to the positive sentiment. The Dow Jones Industrial Average, Nasdaq Composite and S&P 500 were all up around 2% each.
Asian markets were also trading in the green tracking firm cues from Wall Street and Europe, even after Moody’s cut France’s triple-A debt rating before markets opened. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng gained 1% on back of gains in banks and energy shares. China’s Shanghai Composite was up 0.3% and Japan’s Nikkei Stock Average was marginally up 0.2% ahead of easing cues by Bank of Japan.
In India, the latest threat to India’s $100 billion IT industry comes from robots and humanoids that deliver projects at a cost less than one-fourth the billing rates of engineers from Tata Consultancy Services Ltd and Infosys Ltd, reports Mint. Software robots are being made by companies like US-headquartered IPsoft Inc. and British start-up Blue Prism Ltd.
A confidence vote for foreign direct investment (FDI) in retail may be just what the government needs when the winter session of Parliament begins this Thursday, reports Mint. The UPA government will be safe for the next six months, during which another vote cannot be sought.
Telecom stocks will be in focus following an Economic Times report that companies have demanded that reserve base price be slashed by 75% to Rs.3,500 crore, similar to the sale price of third-generation (3G) spectrum two years ago. This could be the first step towards rescuing the auction process, according to GSM operators.
Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) will be on the radar after RIL-owned Infotel Broadband Services hired Arvind Rao, former managing director of OnMobile Global Ltd to drive its 4G services, reports Business Standard. RIL has a pan-India licence for 4G and is expected to roll out services in the next 10 months.
Monnet Ispat and Energy Ltd may see some action following reports that the iron producer is set to acquire majority stake in a 25 million tonnes coal mine in Columbia which will feed its captive power plants.
Essar Ports Ltd and Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Ltd will be in focus following reports they are set to bid for the mega container terminal project in Chennai worth Rs.4,000 crore which will be able to handle ultra-large container vessels.
Godrej Consumer Products Ltd may see some action after it sharply lowered the price of hair colour packs to Rs.30 under an expert name brand to focus and grow in core categories.
Lastly, India’s population is aging sooner than expected, with median age rising to 31 years by 2026, according to a report by the United Nations Population Fund. The shift will have significant implications for policymakers who tout India’s demographic dividend of a young population as one its competitive strengths.