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Business News/ Weekend / Mint's Best of the Week | Polls and Markets, Governance and Performance, Sustainability and Dystopia
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Mint's Best of the Week | Polls and Markets, Governance and Performance, Sustainability and Dystopia

Elections and market sentiment, criminal lawmakers?
  • Adani v. Hindenburg, bob World's fiasco and L&T's future looks bright.
  • Sustainability in the world of business, Delhi's air pollution, Chennai's floods and our aging dams.
  • Best of the WeekPremium
    Best of the Week

    Dear Reader,

    Here are the top themes and stories from Mint’s journalists this week:

    A Cocktail of Poll Results and Market Sentiment 📈

    The week began early, with results from this round of state elections coming in on Sunday. You may have had your fill of political punditry on what this means for next summer’s parliamentary elections. But if you want to understand how the states were won, and especially dissect the BJP’s performance, these 6 charts tell a great story 📊. Our partners at How India Lives, explained how the states of Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Telangana and Mizoram were won and lost.

    🪷 The BJP held on to MP in comfort and won in Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh – three key Hindi heartland states. It gave investors confidence about the party’s popularity and its organisational abilities ahead of next year’s election. On Monday morning Ram Sahgal reported that markets were likely to touch fresh highs on the back of investors looking to close out bearish bets.  And later on Monday we brought you a story analysing the bull run after the election results, also by Ram. Do read to understand how investors behaved and what may be interpreted as signs of caution.

    ⚠️ 37 percent of the freshly elected legislators across the five states have at least one criminal case against them. Many of them include ‘serious’ criminal charges. 45 percent have a declared net worth of INR 5 Cr or more. A Mint analysis of data compiled by the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) showed these and other key characteristics of the new MLAs. Our data-driven approach to understanding electoral politics.

    Corporate Governance and Performance 🎭

    Have Hindenburg horrors returned to haunt the Adani Group? India’s markets regulator, Sebi, served notices to foreign investors who owned stakes in Adani group companies, asking for their ultimate ownership to be disclosed 👰🏼‍♀️. In January, Hindenburg Research, a US-based short seller, published a damning report about the Adani Group with several allegations of financial fraud, including stock manipulation and investment round tripping. The Supreme Court of India has since been looking into the matter. Sebi informed the court that its probe into the matter has concluded, reported Pavan Burugula.

    📲 The fiasco at the Bank of Baroda, where app user numbers were inflated by employees, continues to play out, with inquiries and a probe into the matter. The RBI banned the bank’s mobile app, bob World, from onboarding new users in October. Shayan Ghosh brings us the latest on what’s happening at the bank. A newsy follow up to the deep dive from a few weeks ago.

    🧀 Is a wedge lodged between Jio Studios and JioCinema, media and entertainment businesses owned by Reliance Industries Limited? Should everything produced by Jio Studios be purchased by JioCinema? The clues to these questions and their answers could be in Bodhi Tree Systems (James Murdoch and Uday Shankar) buying into Viacom18 (an RIL subsidiary that owns JioCinema) in April 2023. Shortly thereafter, JioCinema’s mandate to buy everything that Jio Studios produces may have changed, reported Lata Jha.

    ⛰️ Neil Borate took stock of the 5-year performance of well-known equities strategist Saurabh Mukherjea, and his investment firm Marcellus. The firm, which offers portfolio management services (PMS) and investment advisory services, seems to have a mixed track record so far. It went well for the first 3 years. However, in recent months there appear to be concerns about Mukherjea’s strategy and investment thesis. Mint Money brings you an assessment.

    🚀 Larsen & Toubro, the engineering conglomerate with interests in financial and technology services, has become a one-stop shop for engineering solutions in the world’s fastest growing economy, says Mint Snapview. Here’s an interesting perspective that presents a deep analysis of L&T’s future in the context of the government pushing hard on capital expenditure projects over the next 3-5 years. What does this mean for the future of the conglomerate?

    ♻️ Sustainability and Dystopia 💀

    On environment, social and governance (ESG) objectives and the rising role of the chief sustainability officer or CSO across India’s top companies, Sayantan Bera reported on why these traditionally 'non-financial' parameters are now being tracked by stakeholders. How did sustainability become a serious business factor? 🚛

    🇮🇳 The government is considering introducing sustainability factors into the insolvency and bankruptcy code (IBC) reported Gireesh Chandra Prasad, in what could be a significant new policy. This could mean that investors looking to buy distressed assets, as well as the companies that are on sale, will be measured by their sustainability plans. It could also affect valuations ⚖️. This might also make India one of the first countries to introduce such a measure said financial professionals.

    🐟 Linked to sustainability is another crucial piece we published on India's dams. India is the most dammed nation in the world. 6000 of these are classified as large dams. And the bad news is that many are very old, potentially endangering the lives of millions who live downstream in their respective paths. Guest writer Sindhu Bhattacharya examines this burning public safety issue and how it might become worse because of climate change and extreme weather.

    👩🏽‍🌾 If you want to know why Delhi’s air quality is bad despite a drop in stubble burning, read this ground report by Puja Das, who visited farms in neighbouring Haryana and Punjab. Air pollution has become a mammoth factor in the gangetic plain. Factors that contribute to climate change are only adding to the problem, perpetuating a vicious cycle. Here’s how governments and farmers are working to try and reduce its severity and why it persists.

    🌊 Spare a thought for Chennai, which saw 43 centimetres of rain in 35 hours, thanks to the slow-moving Cyclone Michaung, earlier this week. It threw the city and its people out of order and claimed casualties, not to mention causing incalculable amounts of economic loss. N Madhavan explains why India’s cities are sitting ducks for devastation by extreme weather events. It is not hard to imagine the reasons, but read this primer to know how much India suffered due to climate related events in 2022 as per the World Meteorological Organisation.

    That’s all for this week.

    If you have feedback on our journalism, our curation or just about anything to do with us please share your thoughts. You can write to me at nikhil.k@livemint.com or feedback@livemint.com.

    Thank you for your time and here’s wishing you a wonderful weekend.

    Best,

    Nikhil Kanekal

    Head of Subscriber Experience

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    ABOUT THE AUTHOR
    Nikhil Kanekal
    Head of Subscriber Experience
    Catch all the Business News, Market News, Breaking News Events and Latest News Updates on Live Mint. Check all the latest action on Budget 2024 here. Download The Mint News App to get Daily Market Updates.
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    Published: 09 Dec 2023, 03:57 AM IST
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