India accuses oil producers for price rise
India, the world’s third-largest oil importer and consumer, on Monday said oil prices have to be reasonable and market-determined as it expressed concern over rise in rates on supplies being artificially adjusted below demand by producing countries.
With a rise in international oil prices pushing retail petrol and diesel rates to record high, India last month agreed to release five million barrels of crude oil from its Strategic Petroleum Reserve to control the soaring prices. While the US will release 50 million barrels of oil from its strategic petroleum reserves, the stocks to be released by India are almost equal to its daily oil consumption of 4.8 million barrels.
Shriram group announces merger of 3 companies
Three Shriram group companies on Monday announced their merger to create the country’s largest retail finance NBFC in Shriram Finance Ltd. The merged entity would have a combined asset under management of ₹1.5 lakh crore.
The boards of three companies, Shriram Transport Finance (STFC), Shriram City Union Finance ( SCUF) and their promoter Shriram Capital ( SCL) have approved the merger of SCL and SCUF with STFC.
Rupee inches 1 paisa higher to close at 75.77 against US dollar
The rupee on Monday settled for the day with a marginal gain of 1 paisa at 75.77 against the US dollar, tracking a muted trend in domestic equities.
On Friday, the local currency dropped by 18 paise to an over 16-month low of 75.78 against the US dollar.
At the interbank foreign exchange market, the local currency opened on a strong note at 75.64 and witnessed an intra-day high of 75.63 and a low of 75.77 against the US dollar in a highly volatile trading session.
Sensex plunges 503 pts, Nifty drops below 17,400
Sensex tumbled 503 points on Monday, weighed by losses in Reliance Industries, HDFC and Bajaj Finance amid a mixed trend in global markets.
The 30-share index dropped 0.86% to settle at 58,283.42. The NSE Nifty fell 143.05 points or 0.82% to 17,368.25.
Bajaj Finance was the top loser in the Sensex pack followed by Bajaj Finserv, Reliance Industries, M&M, Nestle India and SBI. On the other hand, Axis Bank, Tech Mahindra, PowerGrid and Maruti were among the gainers.
HSBC and Wells Fargo use blockchain to settle forex trades
HSBC and Wells Fargo have started using a blockchain platform to settle bilateral foreign currency (FX) trades .
Baton Systems, the company behind the Core-FX distributed ledger technology, or DLT, said on Monday the two banks are using the platform to settle FX trades using real currencies and real accounts, in less than three minutes.
Overseas job search continues to remain steady from India: Report
There has been a steady growth in overseas job searches by Indians with the US, Canada, the Middle East and the UK topping the list, despite travel restrictions being put in place in anticipation of a third-wave of Covid-19 pandemic.
Indian job seekers show a keen inclination towards working in countries like the US, Canada, the UK, as well as the Middle East region, according to Indeed data. Over 40% of Indians searched for jobs in the US, making it the most popular destination during 2019-2021, followed by Canada with its immigration friendly policies.
Some of the most popular job roles among job seekers looking to immigrate include tech jobs such as software engineer, full stack developer, data analyst among others.
U.S. chipmaker Intel to invest $7 bln in new facility in Malaysia
American chip manufacturer Intel Corporation will invest $7.10 billion in a new facility in Malaysia.
The Malaysian Investment Development Authority said Intel Corporation had chosen Malaysia to expand manufacturing capabilities for its advanced semiconductor packaging technologies in the northern state of Penang.
Gold advances ₹62, silver rises ₹195
Gold prices rose ₹62 to ₹47,262 per 10 gram in the national capital on Monday in line with recovery in the precious metal in global markets, according to HDFC Securities. The metal settled at ₹47,200 per 10 gram in the previous trade.
Silver also moved higher by ₹195 to ₹60,122 per kg from ₹59,927 per kg in the previous trade.
In the international market, gold was trading higher at $1,786 per ounce and silver was flat at $22.23 per ounce.
Banks lost ₹2.85 lakh Cr due to loan default of 13 firms
Public sector banks have lost around ₹2.85 lakh crore due to loan dues of 13 corporates, United Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU) alleged on Monday.
UFBU had called for a two-day all India bank strike on December 16 and 17 protesting against Banking Laws (Amendment) Bill 2021 and opposing the centre’s alleged move to privatise PSBs.
According to the statistics given by the UFBU, the 13 corporates’ outstanding dues were at ₹4,86,800 crore and it was resolved at ₹1,61,820 crore resulting in a loss of ₹2,84,980 crore.
Edelweiss increases stake in its wealth management business
Edelweiss announced that it has increased its stake in its associate company, Edelweiss Wealth Management (EWM) to 44.16% from 38.88%. PAG-the world’s largest Asia-focused investment groups continues to be the majority shareholder in EWM with 55.84 % stake.
“With a significant growth runway visible for Wealth Management in India, we are excited to invest in this business which has a proven track record and fuel the expansion of its market dominance,” Edelweiss Chairman Rashesh Shah, said in a statement.
Indian wealth management industry is expected to reach ₹540 trillion in the next five years, with a strong annual growth trajectory of 12.5 %, the company noted.
Processed over 1 billion merchant transactions in November: PhonePe
Digital payments and financial services firm PhonePe said offline merchant transactions on its platform have shown 200 per cent growth since last year, and it processed over a billion peer to merchant transactions in November.
The company credited this growth to the rapid expansion it has seen in offline merchant acceptance across India. “PhonePe now has a merchant network across 15,700 towns and villages, constituting 99% pin codes in the country,” it said in a statement.
Grofers rebrands as ‘Blinkit’
Online grocery delivery service Grofers said it is rebranding itself as ‘Blinkit’ to reflect its pivot to quick commerce.
“A few months ago, we started on a journey to build the future of commerce with 10-minute delivery of most of the stuff our customers need in their daily lives… We learnt a lot as Grofers, and all our learnings, our team, and our infrastructure is being repurposed to pivot to something with staggering product-market fit – quick commerce,” Blinkit said in a blogpost.
The quick commerce sector in India is expected to grow to $5 billion by 2025 from the current $0.3 billion, according to a RedSeer report.
Credit Suisse announces appointments to executive board
Credit Suisse announced the appointment of Francesco De Ferrari as CEO of the wealth management division. De Ferrari, who has also been appointed as interim CEO of EMEA region, will join the company’s executive board, effective January 1, 2022.
Christian Meissner, CEO of the investment bank division, has been appointed as CEO of the Americas region. In addition, Helman Sitohang and Andre Helfenstein have been appointed as CEOs of the APAC and Switzerland regions, respectively. Further, Mark Hannam has been named as head of internal audit.
The new appointments are in line with the Group’s new strategy and organisational structure, as announced in November 2021.
Binance’s Singapore affiliate to withdraw licence application
Binance Asia Services Pte Ltd, the Singapore affiliate of Binance, one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges, will withdraw its local license application and wind down its digital payment token services in the city-state by February 13, 2022, it said in a statement.
“Taking into account strategic, commercial and developmental considerations globally, Binance Asia Services has withdrawn its application to the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) for a license to operate a regulated cryptocurrency exchange in the country,” the company said.
Rupee gains against U.S. dollar
The Indian rupee appreciated against the U.S. dollar in early trade after plunging to an over 16-month low in the previous session. The domestic unit opened strong at 75.64 and inched up to quote 75.63 against the greenback in early deals, registering a rise of 15 paise from the last close.
The Indian currency was boosted by positive trend in domestic equities. Meanwhile, the dollar index, which gauges the greenback’s strength against a basket of six currencies, rose 0.10% to 96.18.
Supriya Lifescience’s ₹700-crore IPO
Supriya Lifescience Ltd, a manufacturer of active pharmaceutical ingredients, will open its ₹700-crore initial public offering (IPO) on December 16 with a price band of ₹265-274 per share. The bidding for anchor investors will open on December 15.
The three-day IPO comprises fresh issue of equity shares worth ₹200 crore and an offer-for-sale of up to ₹500 crore by its promoter. Investors can bid for a minimum of 54 equity shares and in multiples of thereafter.
China’s SenseTime to withdraw $767 million IPO
Chinese start-up SenseTime will withdraw its $767 million Hong Kong initial public offering and update its prospectus after it was placed on a U.S. investment blacklist on Friday by the Biden Administration.
Oil prices rises
Oil prices rose, extending gains from last Friday, helped by growing optimism that the Omicron variant’s impact could be limited on global economic growth and fuel demand.
Brent futures gained 0.7%, to $75.68 a barrel, while U.S. WTI added 1.0%, to $72.36 per barrel. Both benchmarks posted gains of about 8% last week, their first weekly gain in seven.
Indian indices open higher
Indian indices opened higher amid positive global cues and advanced in early trade. At 9:20 A.M., the Sensex was up 378.85 or 0.64% to 59,165.52, while Nifty rose to 17,637.40, up 126.10 or 0.72%.
On Friday, the 30-share index ended 20.46 points or 0.03% lower at 58,786.67. Similarly, the NSE Nifty dipped 5.55 points or 0.03% to 17,511.30.
Domestic macroeconomic data announcements and the US Federal Reserve’s interest rate decision are the major events to drive sentiments in the equity market this week, according to analysts.
Asian shares rise
Asian shares rose as investors seemed confident markets can weather whatever comes from several important central bank meetings this week, including the Federal Reserve, the European Central Bank, the Bank of England and the Bank of Japan.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan added 0.8%, after bouncing 1.7% last week. In Japan, Nikkei rose 0.91% while Topix gained 0.37%. Chinese stocks added 1.4% to last week’s 3.1% jump. South Korea’s Kospi was trading 0.61% higher.
In U.S., S&P 500 futures and Nasdaq futures were both up 0.4%.
—- Edited by John Xavier
(With inputs from Reuters, PTI and other news agencies.)