INDIAN SHARES – Indian stocks set to open higher; Bajaj Finance in the crosshairs

INDIAN SHARES – Indian stocks set to open higher; Bajaj Finance in the crosshairs
INDIAN SHARES – Indian stocks set to open higher; Bajaj Finance in the crosshairs

Indian stocks are expected to open higher on Friday, tracking gains in global stocks after the US Federal Reserve signaled further rate hikes were unlikely, while Bajaj Finance will be in focus after the local central bank has lifted restrictions on its loan products.

India’s GIFT Nifty was trading at 22,891 at 07:50 IST, indicating that the Nifty 50 will open above its Thursday close of 22,648.2.

Star stock indexes closed higher in the previous session as the market digested a less bullish stance from the Fed and a drop in oil prices. Both indexes have gained about 1% since the start of the week.

Easing tensions in the Middle East, positive results from domestic companies have fueled optimism and interest among operators, said Vishnu Kant Upadhyay, assistant vice president of research at Advisory at Master Capital Services.

Bajaj Finance shares will be in focus after the non-bank lender said the Reserve Bank of India has lifted restrictions on its lending products, allowing it to “resume sanctioning and disbursement of loans” in prohibited segments. Shares of Bajaj Finance have fallen almost 5% since the ban was imposed in November.

Asian markets opened higher, with the MSCI Asia ex-Japan index rising 1.1%. Stocks on Wall Street rose overnight after Fed Chairman Jerome Powell said Wednesday that further interest rate increases remained unlikely.

However, higher interest rates for long in the United States could trigger capital outflows in India, analysts say.

Foreign institutional investors sold Indian stocks on Thursday, offloading stocks worth 9.64 billion rupees ($115.7 million). However, domestic institutional investors bought shares worth a net Rs 13.52 billion, which helped cushion foreign capital outflows.

US jobs data, due later in the day, is also in investors’ sights for clues on the Fed’s interest rate path.

ACTIONS TO MONITOR:

** Coal India: The state-owned mining company reported fourth-quarter revenue that beat analysts’ estimates, helped by higher sales volumes at its mines.

** Procter and Gamble Health, Ceat: companies announced a drop in quarterly profit.

** Zydus Lifesciences: The company will sell around 25% of its stake in Bayer joint venture Zydus Pharma for Rs 2.82 billion.

** Coforge, an IT company, announced slightly lower than expected fourth quarter revenue.

** Key findings: Titan Company, Britannia Industries, Adani Green, Tata Technologies ($1 = 83.3440 Indian rupees) (Reporting by Manvi Pant in Bengaluru; Editing by Eileen Soreng)

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