Opening Bell 20 April

Opening Bell 20 April

New Delhi: The predictions are here. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) expects normal rainfall this year. While that may help boost sentiment, here’s a list of other things to know before trading starts.

Better-than-expected housing stats helped US markets shrug off the rating downgrade. Data released by the government showed a 7.2% gain in March housing numbers. The S&P 500 rose 0.57% to 1,312.

Asian markets tracked US stocks. Electronics and commodity stocks are leading the gains in the Japanese market. The Nikkei is up 1.27%.

Crude oil on the other hand is trading flat. Brent crude oil at $121.28 a barrel is marginally down by $0.05.

State Bank of India increased its base rate by 25 basis points to 8.5%. The increase will make both the corporate and retail loans dearer. Even after the latest hike, SBI’s base rate continues to be the lowest amongst major banks.

The Director General of Hydrocarbons has refused to approve Reliance Industries’ spending on KG-D6 fields unless the company agrees to drill more wells in the gas block.(Read more) In another development, two natural gas discoveries by Reliance Industries were rejected as tests conducted by the company differed with the methods prescribed by the regulator. Read more...-

Reliance Infrastructure is in talks with ICICI Bank for a 2,000-crore loan for the Worli-Haji Ali sea link project. The company is looking to achieve financial closure for the 5,100-crore project in the next two months. Read more...

Robust interest income boosted profits of the IDBI Bank. The bank reported a 62.13% jump in fourth quarter profits on 45.5% growth in net interest income.

Zee Entertainment also reported better than expected fourth quarter results. Consolidated net profit in March quarter grew 49% to 192 crore. While sales grew 23%, EBITDA margins stood at 28.4%.

With most of the ministers busy with state elections, the group of ministers’ panel is yet to fix any date or timeframe for deciding on Cairn-Vedanta deal. Meanwhile, Vedanta group company, Sesa Goa, bought a 10.5% stake in Cairn India from Malaysia’s Petronas.

State-run banks have a bitter pill to swallow with RBI asking the banks to show pension liabilities in balance sheets. Most state-run lenders have huge employee bases and their 4th quarter numbers will be hit. Read more...

HCL Technologies, ING Vysya Bank, Infotech Enterprises and Yes Bank will declare their March quarter results today. Analysts at Sharekhan expect the HCL Technologies to report 33.8% y-o-y rise in net sales and 31.2% growth in net profits. Sequentially, growth rates are pegged at 6% and 12% respectively.

And finally, a woman almost stepped on a crocodile after it wandered up to her front door. The 32-year old found a crocodile in her verandah while she was taking the bins out. Read more...