Opening bell 29 April

Opening bell 29 April

Mumbai: Four consecutive days of losses for Indian stocks. Will it be any different today? Here’s a list of things you should know before trading starts.

Overnight, US stocks closed higher as better-than-expected corporate earnings outpaced concerns about the economy. The S&P 500 rose 0.36% to 1,360.

This is despite the US GDP growing at a slower-than-expected pace. The US economy grew 1.8% in the January-March quarter. According to Bloomberg, economists were projecting the economy to grow at 2%.

The slower growth led to mixed opening in Asian markets. Stock markets in South Korea and Hong Kong are trading lower. Brent crude oil is trading flat at $124.76 a barrel.

Back home, the Mukesh Ambani-controlled Reliance group is in talks to buy Bharti’s stake in Bharti Axa Life insurance venture. Bharti owns 74% equity in the insurance venture.

The ministry of petroleum and natural gas will review the cost recoverability of Reliance Industries’ expenditure on D6 block on 2 May. Meanwhile, a meeting of the management committee on 2 May will also discuss the issue of non-drilling of wells according to the field plan. Read more...

The government will auction five mega transmission-lines projects worth 6,485 crore in the next two months. At least 30 companies are expected to bid for the projects.

Monnet Ispat is planning to sell a 20% stake in its power venture by June. The company plans to raise 1,300 crore from the stake sale.

Power Grid Corporation is looking to diversify into engineering, procurement and construction services. The company is looking to expand its consultancy and telecom business in Asia and Africa.

Motherson Sumi Systems will merge three group firms with itself. The company wants to consolidate businesses and has got board approval for the merger of three firms with itself. It has set a target of becoming a $5 billion entity by 2015.

Expect some action in Pipavav Shipyard shares. The company has signed an agreement with UK’s Babcock group to jointly built aircraft carriers for the Indian Navy. It is also in advanced talks to sell a minority stake to an international shipyard.

The restructuring at Nokia is turning out to be a nightmare for Sasken Communication Technologies. The stock tanked 5.7% yesterday on concerns that its revenues might fall. Nokia is Sasken’s largest client and is looking to reduce R&D expenses by a billion dollars.

Biocon reported a 25% growth in fourth quarter net profit to 101 crore. The company earned 32 crore from various outsourcing deals. Total income of the company rose by 8% to 717 crore.

In its bid to increase operating margins, Biocon is looking to divest its 70% stake in German subsidiary Axicorp GmbH.

LIC Housing Finance reported a 47% growth in fourth quarter net profit to 314.8 crore. The company attributed the robust results to a 71% growth in retail loan disbursements.

Vijaya Bank, on the other hand, reported a 58% drop in March quarter profits to 54.23 crore. The drop in net profits is attributed to the provisions made by the company for wage revision. According to the bank, it made a one-time provision of 180 crore towards pension for retiring employees.

The increase in spot coal prices have squeezed the margins of JSW Energy. The company reported a 25% drop in fourth quarter net profit to 205.7 crore. Revenues in the same period rose by 73%.

IDFC, HCC, Oriental Bank of Commerce, United Spirits and Shoppers Stop will announce their March quarter results on Friday.

Looks can be deceiving. The Turkish police turned undercover to test how easily citizens would fall for a confidence scam. The undercover police donned white coats and stethoscopes. They told residents that they were screening for high blood pressure and handed out pills. To their surprise, residents at 86 out of 100 households swallowed the pills immediately. Read more...