The benchmark stock indices opened the day on a positive note, further adding to gains from yesterday.
Join us as we follow the top business news through the day.
SpiceJet ties up with GMR Hyderabad Air Cargo for storage, delivery of COVID-19 vaccine
Low cost carrier SpiceJet on Thursdayannounced that it has signed an MoU with GMR Hyderabad Air Cargo (GHAC), a GMR group company,for providing a seamless service to all vaccine manufacturers in the region.
As part of this association, SpiceXpress the cargo arm of SpiceJet envisions to provide efficient, speedy and reliable solutions for vaccine delivery, while also creating a sustainable cold chain network.
SpiceXpress aims to provide the first mile pick up and last mile delivery to carry COVID-19 vaccines across the domestic and international markets in a temperature controlled environment, a press release from the airlines said.
Under the MoU, GHAC shall provide available required space on priority for SpiceJet’s vaccine shipments besides training its personnel along with the airline for specific customer requirements.
SpiceJet on its part will keep a dedicated fleet of freighters including wide-body aircraft at Hyderabad airport to handle all domestic and international consignments.
Volkswagen to hike Polo, Vento prices in India by up to 2.5% next month
Yet another car manufacturer opts to hike prices.
PTI reports: “German carmaker Volkswagen on Thursday said it will hike prices of its hatchback Polo and mid-sized sedan Vento in India by up to 2.5 per cent from next month.
The company joins other automobile manufacturers such as Maruti Suzuki India, Nissan, Renault India, Honda Cars, Mahindra & Mahindra, Ford India, Isuzu, BMW India, Audi India and Hero MotoCorp, which have already announced that they would hike prices from January due to increased input costs.
“Effective January 2021, Volkswagen India announces a price revision of up to 2.5 per cent across the Polo and Vento models in lieu to the rising input costs,” a spokesperosn of Volkswagen Passenger Cars India said in a statement.
The company sells Polo and Vento with price starting from Rs 5.88 lakh and Rs 8.94 lakh, respectively.”
Mrs Bectors Food Specialities off to flying start; shares list with 74% premium
More signs of an IPO mania.
PTI reports: “Shares of Mrs Bectors Food Specialities on Thursday made a remarkable market debut, listing with a premium of 74 per cent, against its issue price of Rs 288.
The stock opened at Rs 501, reflecting a jump of 73.95 per cent from the issue price on the BSE. As the trade progressed, it rose to Rs 601.20, up 108.75 per cent.
At the NSE, it made a debut at Rs 500, registering a premium of 73.61 per cent.
The company”s market valuation was at Rs 3,338.27 crore on the BSE.
Mirroring massive investor response, Mrs Bectors Food Specialities initial public offer was subscribed a whopping 198 times earlier this month.
The price band for the share sale was at Rs 286-288 apiece.
Mrs Bectors Food manufactures and markets a range of products such as biscuits, breads and buns. It markets a wide variety of biscuits and breads under the flagship brand ”Mrs Bector”s Cremica” and the ”English Oven”, respectively.”
India challenges Vodafone arbitration ruling in Singapore: sources
India has challenged in Singapore an international arbitration court’s verdict against it over a $2 billion tax claim involving Vodafone Group Plc, a senior government official told Reuters on Thursday, December 24, 2020, on condition of anonymity.
Vodafone in September had won the case against India, endingone of the most high-profile disputes in the country that hadcaused concern among investors over retrospective tax claims oncompanies.
An international arbitration tribunal in The Hague had ruled that India’s imposition of a tax liability on Vodafone was in abreach of an investment treaty agreement between India and theNetherlands. India had 90 days to appeal the ruling.
The Union Finance Ministry did not immediately reply to an email and message seeking comment on the story.
India lost another international arbitration case this week against Cairn Energy, over a tax dispute. It has beenordered to pay the UK-listed company over $1.2 billion indamages and costs.
US corporate yields at all-time low
Rupee surges 14 paise to 73.62 against US dollar in early trade
A quick rally in the rupee this morning.
PTI reports: “The rupee appreciated 14 paise to 73.62 against the US dollar in opening trade on Thursday as sustained foreign fund inflows and hectic buying in domestic equities strengthened investor sentiment.
Traders said the weakness of the American currency in the overseas market also supported the domestic unit.
At the interbank forex market, the domestic unit opened at 73.66 against the US dollar, then inched higher to 73.62 against the greenback, registering a rise of 14 paise over its previous close.
On Wednesday, rupee had settled at 73.76 against the US dollar.
Meanwhile, the dollar index, which gauges the greenback”s strength against a basket of six currencies, fell 0.20 per cent to 90.22.
The US dollar is trading on a weak note as risk appetite rose on the expectation of an imminent Brexit trade deal between the UK and the European Union, Reliance Securities said in a research note.
Further, “Asian currencies were trading flat to stronger against the greenback this morning and could lend support to the domestic unit,” the note added.
On the domestic equity market front, the 30-share BSE benchmark Sensex was trading 340.64 points higher at 46,784.82 and the broader NSE Nifty advanced 107.55 points to 13,708.65.
Foreign institutional investors were net buyers in the capital market as they purchased shares worth Rs 536.13 crore on a net basis on Wednesday, according to provisional exchange data.
Brent crude futures, the global oil benchmark, rose 0.68 per cent to USD 51.55 per barrel.”
Bharti pips Jio again in mobile user addition, Oct. figures show
India’s telecom subscriber base grew to more than 1.17 billion in October with Bharti Airtel maintaining its leadership in mobile subscriber addition, according to the monthly report released by sector regulator TRAI on Wednesday.
This is the second consecutive month in which Airtel added the highest number of subscribers. In September, it had regained the leadership position in subscriber addition after a gap of four years. The company added 3.67 million new customers in October, taking its total wireless customer base to 330.28 million, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India’s (TRAI) report said.
Airtel was followed by Reliance Jio, which added 2.22 million new mobile customers, taking its total subscriber base to 406.35 million during the reported month.
Shares rise on Reliance, financials boost
A good start to the day for stocks.
Reuters reports: “Indian shares advanced on Thursday on the back of gains in Reliance Industries and financial stocks, as news that a Brexit trade deal was close boosted investor sentiment ahead of the Christmas holiday.
The NSE Nifty 50 index rose 0.64% to 13,688.60 by 0352 GMT and was set for its third straight day of gains, while the benchmark S&P BSE Sensex was up 0.63% at 46,742.16.
Britain and the European Union were on the cusp of striking a narrow trade deal on Thursday, media reports said, boosting Asian equities.
In Mumbai, shares of India’s most valuable company, Reliance Industries, gained nearly 1%.
The Nifty’s banking, PSU Bank, and financial indexes rose between 0.8% and 1.5%.
Shares of Bharti Airtel Ltd rose as much as 2.5% and were among the top three percentage gainers on the Nifty 50 index.
The telecom operator added 3.67 million new customers in October, the highest among other telecom operators in the country, data showed on Wednesday.
Bucking the trend, the Nifty IT index inched 0.3% lower after hitting record peaks in the previous two sessions.
Biscuit maker Mrs Bectors Food Specialities is slated to make its market debut later on Thursday.”
China steps up pressure on Alibaba with anti-monopoly probe
Chinese regulators on Thursday announced an anti-monopoly investigation of e-commerce giant Alibaba Group, stepping up official efforts to tighten control over China”s fast-growing tech industries.
The market regulator said it was looking into Alibaba”s policy of “choose one of two,” which requires its business partners to avoid dealing with competitors. The one-sentence statement gave no details of possible penalties or a timeline to announce a result.
Chinese leaders said earlier an economic priority in the coming year will be to step up anti-monopoly enforcement.