The Indian market is likely to open lower on Thursday following losses in global markets as concerns about rising coronavirus infections and new shutdowns in major US cities overshadowed investors’ enthusiasm about COVID-19 vaccine developments. At 7:00 am, the SGX Nifty was trading 109.00 points or 0.84 percent lower at 12,885.00, indicating a negative start for the Sensex and Nifty50.
1. Wall Street: US stocks closed steeply lower after a late-session sell-off on Wednesday as investors weighed surging COVID-19 infections and mounting shutdowns against encouraging vaccine developments. While the three major US stock indexes oscillated through much of the day, with economically-sensitive cyclicals and small caps leading the way, they closed sharply in the red. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 344.93 points, or 1.16 percent, to 29,438.42, the S&P 500 lost 41.74 points, or 1.16 percent, to 3,567.79 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 97.74 points, or 0.82 percent, to 11,801.60.
2. Asian Stocks: Asian stocks followed Wall Street's sharp selloff on Thursday as concerns about rising coronavirus infections and new shutdowns in major US cities hosed down earlier investor enthusiasm about COVID-19 vaccine developments. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 lost 0.5 percent in early trading, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng index futures lost 0.02 percent. Japan's Nikkei 225 fell 0.4 percent.
3. Closing Bell: Indian indices ended at a record close on Wednesday led by gains in financials and auto stocks. Heavyweights L&T, M&M, ICICI Bank, Kotak Bank and Bajaj Finance contributed the most to the indices. The Sensex rose 227 points to settle at a new closing high of 44,180 while the Nifty rose 64 points to its fresh closing high of 12,938. Broader markets were also positive for the day with the Nifty Midcap and Nifty Smallcap indices up 1.4 percent and 0.3 percent, respectively.
4. Crude Oil: US crude futures fell in early trade on Thursday, giving up some of the gains from the previous day as surging COVID-19 cases and widening lockdowns raised fears over fuel demand, offsetting further upbeat vaccine news. US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were down 39 cents, or 0.9 percent, to $41.43 a barrel, after gaining nearly 1 percent on Wednesday. Brent crude was yet to trade, having risen 1.4 percent on Wednesday. (Image: Reuters)
5. Rupee: The rupee continued its winning run for the third session in a row on Wednesday, spurting 27 paise to settle at 74.19 against the US dollar amid unabated foreign fund inflows and a weak greenback overseas. At the interbank forex market, the domestic unit opened at 74.49 against the US dollar and touched an intra-day high of 74.09 and a low of 74.52. It finally closed at 74.19 against the greenback, registering a rise of 27 paise over its previous close. (Image: Reuters)
6. Pfizer Ends COVID Trial With 95% Efficacy: Pfizer Inc said on Wednesday that final results from the late-stage trial of its COVID-19 vaccine show it was 95 percent effective, adding it had the required two-months of safety data and would apply for emergency U.S. authorization within days. The drugmaker said efficacy of the vaccine developed with German partner BioNTech SE was consistent across age and ethnicity demographics, and that there were no major side effects, a sign that the immunization could be employed broadly around the world. Efficacy in adults over 65 years, who are at particular risk from the virus, was over 94 percent. (Image: Reuters)
7. Lakshmi Vilas Bank: Protecting the interest of depositors and ensuring a smooth merger with DBS Bank India will be Lakshmi Vilas Bank's (LVB) top priority, said TN Manoharan, the bank’s newly-appointed administrator. "Customers of the bank should not be worried," Manoharan said while addressing the media earlier today after taking charge as the administrator. "We are confident that we will be able to implement the resolution plan before December 16," he said. "We want to regenerate confidence among employees of the bank, we want to state that their interest will be taken care of under the amalgamation plan...Their remuneration and contracts will continue as before," Manoharan said, adding that it is also possible that the merger creates more jobs in the future. (company image)
8. ICMR On Plasma Therapy: The country’s apex health research body, ICMR, has issued an advisory stating that indiscriminate use of convalescent plasma therapy (CPT) in coronavirus infected patients is not advisable. The COVID-19 caseload in India has mounted to over 89 lakh. In an ”Evidence-Based Advisory to address Inappropriate Use of Convalescent Plasma in COVID-19 Patients”, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) said that a potential donor for convalescent plasma should have sufficient concentration of antibody working against COVID-19. The ICMR recently conducted an open-label phase II multicentre randomised controlled trial in India across 39 public and private hospitals on use of convalescent plasma in the management of cases with moderate COVID-19 disease (PLACID Trial). It was concluded that CPTdid not lead to reduction in progression to severe COVID-19 or all-cause mortality in the group that received CPT as compared to the group that did not receive the therapy. (Image: PTI)
9. China Defends Food Import Curbs: Chinas government on Wednesday defended anti-coronavirus controls that have disrupted imports of beef, poultry and fish from the United States, New Zealand and other trading partners. Customs officials who say the coronavirus has been found on frozen meat and on packaging have imposed temporary suspensions on suppliers. That prompted complaints by China's trading partners. The reasonable and justifiable curbs are intended to protect public health, foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said. In June, China temporarily suspended the import of chicken from U.S.-based Tyson Foods Inc. after the virus was found at one of its farms. (Image: Reuters)
10. Vivad Se Vishwas Scheme Garners Rs 72,480 Crore Tax: The Revenue Department has reviewed the progress of Vivad se Vishwas Scheme, a direct tax legacy dispute resolution scheme launched by the government in March this year, according to sources. The finance ministry sources, who wished not to be identified, revealed that till date Rs 72,480 crore of tax has been paid by CPSUs and taxpayers against the disputed demand under the scheme. They said the Income Tax Department has also received a total of 45,855 declarations until November 2020 worth Rs 31,734 crore under the scheme. Total disputed amount of Central Public Sector Undertakings (CPSUs) being settled under the scheme is Rs 100,195 crore, the sources added. (stock image)