(Photo: PTI)
(Photo: PTI)

Markets likely to be cautious ahead of G-20 summit

  • Investors across the globe are awaiting the highly-anticipated meeting between Donald Trump and Xi Jinping
  • Auto stocks to be in focus as the Union cabinet approved proposed changes to the Motor Vehicles Bill

Mumbai: Indian stock markets are likely to be cautious on Tuesday while global peers are weak ahead of the crucial G-20 summit later this week.

Investors across the globe are awaiting the highly-anticipated meeting between US President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping at the upcoming G-20 summit in Japan. Trump is slated to meet one-on-one with at least eight world leaders at the G20 summit, including China’s President and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Mainland Chinese stocks declined in early trade, with the Shanghai composite slipping 0.43% and Shenzhen component falling 0.51%. The Shenzhen composite also fell 0.634%. In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index slipped 0.32%. The Nikkei 225 in Japan slipped fractionally in morning trade, while the Topix rose 0.26%. Over in South Korea, the Kospi was 0.3% higher. The Dow ended Monday up 0.03%, while the S&P 500 lost 0.17% and the Nasdaq 0.32%.

Trump targeted Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and other top Iranian officials with sanctions on Monday, taking a dramatic, unprecedented step to increase pressure on Iran after Tehran’s downing of an unmanned American drone. With tensions running high between the two countries, Trump signed an executive order imposing the sanctions, which US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said would lock billions of dollars more in Iranian assets.

Back home, shares of Mindtree and Larsen and Toubro (L&T) are likely to be in focus today. Singapore-based Nalanda Capital on Monday sold its entire 10.61% stake in Mindtree Ltd to L&T, signalling the likely end of the stiff fight put up by promoters to the first hostile takeover bid of an Indian software services company. Nalanda sold its whole stake worth 1,707.46 crore to L&T in an ongoing open offer for shareholders of Mindtree. The 10-day open offer closes on 28 June.

Auto stocks will also be in focus as the Union cabinet on Monday approved proposed changes to the Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Bill that aim to address crucial issues such as road safety, with stiff penalties for violation of rules, strengthening the public transportation system and curbing corruption.

Meanwhile, yields on 10-year US treasuries have dived 120 basis points since November and, at 2.01%, are almost back to where they were before Trump was elected in late 2016. The speed and scale of the latest decline have seen the dollar fall for four sessions on a row against a basket of other currencies to stand at a three-month low of 95.980.

The pullback in the dollar combined with lower yields globally has put a fire under gold, which touched a six-year top overnight. The metal is up 12% since early May at $1,1426.39 an ounce, with the next target the 2013 top of $1,433.

Oil prices consolidated after rising sharply last week in reaction to tensions between the United States and Iran. Brent crude futures firmed 8 cents to $64.94, while US crude was unchanged at $57.90 a barrel.

(Reuters contributed to the story)

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