Top Business News of The Day: Sensex, Nifty surge to fresh lifetime peaks; India approves incentive scheme for auto and relief measures for telecoms sector; Microsoft to buy back up to $60 billion in shares and more.

The BSE benchmark Sensex.   | Photo Credit: PTI

5:35 P.M.

Govt approves Rs 26,058 cr PLI scheme for auto, drone sectors; India approves relief measures for telecoms sector and Indian law firms reluctant to advise on IPO of insurance giant LIC.

Sensex, Nifty surge to fresh lifetime peaks; Infosys announces strategic collaboration with SAP and Esports platform MPL raises fresh funds at $2.3 bn valuation.

EU to propose ban on products made by forced labour; China stocks fall on weak data, resurgence in virus cases and OneWeb launches satellites in global internet service push.

5:22 P.M.

Telecom package to provide some relief to stressed sector: Industry body COAI

Telecom industry body COAI lauded telecom relief package approved by the Cabinet on Wednesday, which will be implemented prospectively and provide a breather to the sector that is reeling under heavy stress. The Cabinet has approved the inclusion of only revenues earned from telecom services in the adjusted gross revenue and removal of penalty on dues to be paid to the government, PTI reported.

"Going forward, this will give some relief to our greatly stressed sector for sure," Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) Director General S P Kochhar said in a statement. The industry takes it as an indicator of the government thinking and is keenly awaiting rationalisation of costs and processes of 5G roll-out, he added.

4:31 P.M.

Flipkart adds 66 warehouses, sortation centres, creates 1.15 lakh seasonal job opportunities

Flipkart on Wednesday said it has added 66 new large-scale fulfillment and sortation centres across the country over the past few months and created 1.15 lakh additional seasonal jobs to strengthen its supply chain network ahead of the festive season.

The Walmart-owned company has also bolstered its last-mile delivery capabilities by adding more than 1,000 delivery hubs, while also expanding its partnership with kiranas, PTI reported.

4:28 P.M.

Infosys announces strategic collaboration with SAP

Infosys on Wednesday announced a strategic collaboration with SAP, a market leader in enterprise application software, to provide Business Process Transformation-as-a-Service to enterprises, PTI reported.

Through this collaboration, Infosys will leverage business process intelligence (BPI) from SAP to identify opportunities and obstacles in the transformation journey and create a roadmap for clients, Bengaluru-headquartered Infosys said in a statement.

4:08 P.M.

Sensex, Nifty surge to fresh lifetime peaks

Equity benchmark Sensex soared over 475 points to close at its new lifetime high on Wednesday, driven by gains in TCS, Bharti Airtel and Titan amid persistent foreign capital inflows.

The 30-share index settled 476.11 points or 0.82% higher at 58,723.20. The NSE Nifty climbed 139.45 points or 0.80% to its new closing high of 17,519.45.

NTPC was the top gainer in the Sensex pack followed by Bharti Airtel, Titan, HCL Tech, SBI, PowerGrid, TCS and IndusInd Bank. On the other hand, Asian Paints, Axis Bank, UltraTech Cement, Bajaj Finance and Nestle India were among the laggards, PTI reported.

4:04 P.M.

Rupee settles 18 paise higher at 73.50 against US dollar

The rupee closed 18 paise higher at 73.50 against the US dollar on Wednesday, tracking a firm trend in domestic equities and sustained foreign fund inflows.

At the interbank forex market, the local unit opened flat at 73.68 against the greenback. During the session, the domestic unit witnessed an intra-day high of 73.50 and a low of 73.74, PTI reported.

3:59 P.M.

Barnier warns of 'other Brexits' if no EU immigration overhaul

Former EU Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier, who is running for president in France, warned Wednesday that other states would follow Britain and leave the European Union unless it reformed its immigration rules, AFP reported.

3:57 P.M.

Tata Motors drives in XPRES-T EV for fleet segment at Rs 9.54 lakh

Tata Motors on Wednesday said it has launched its first electric sedan under XPRES brand – the XPRES-T EV, exclusively for fleet customers, with a price starting at Rs 9.54 lakh. The sedan would come in two trims -- XpresT 165 and XpresT 213, with a range of 165 km and 213 km, respectively.

The two variants of  XpresT 165 are tagged at Rs 9.54 lakh and Rs 10.04 lakh, while the XpresT 213 trims are priced at Rs 10.14 lakh and Rs 10.64, respectively, PTI reported.

3:31 P.M.

Esports platform MPL raises fresh funds at $2.3 bn valuation

Esports platform Mobile Premier League (MPL) on Wednesday said it has raised fresh funds in a funding round led by Legatum Capital at a pre-money valuation of $2.3 billion, PTI reported.

While MPL did not disclose the quantum of funds raised, sources said the company has raised about $150 million (about Rs 1,104.5 crore) in the series E round.

3:25 P.M.

Govt approves Rs 26,058 cr PLI scheme for auto, drone sectors

The Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved a Rs 26,058 crore production linked incentive (PLI) scheme for auto, auto-components and drone industry to enhance India’s manufacturing capabilities, Union Minister Anurag Thakur said on Wednesday.

The PLI scheme will incentivise the emergence of advanced automotive technologies' global supply chain in India. It would help create additional employment of over 7.6 lakh people. Incentives worth Rs 26,058 crore will be provided to industry over five years.

The PLI scheme will bring fresh investments of over Rs 42,500 crore in five years and incremental production of over Rs 2.3 lakh crore, PTI reported.

3:07 P.M.

MG Motor unveils Astor; enters highly competitive mid-size SUV segment

MG Motor India on Wednesday marked its entry into the highly competitive mid-sized SUV segment in the country, with the unveiling of its all-new model -- MG Astor. The model, which comes with a personal AI assistant and first-in-segment Autonomous (Level 2) technology, would compete with the likes of Hyundai Creta, Kia Seltos and Skoda Kushaq.

Astor is based on the MG's successful global platform, ZS and comes with two engine options  – the Brit Dynamic 220 TURBO petrol engine with a six-speed AT (automatic) delivering a 140ps of power and VTi Tech petrol engine with a manual transmission and an eight-speed CVT, delivering 110ps of power, PTI reported.

2:23 P.M.

Indian law firms reluctant to advise on IPO of insurance giant LIC

India's plans to list state-run Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) face an unusual problem: domestic law firms are shying away from advising the government, deterred by the low fees on offer at the time of a lucrative boom in corporate stock listings, Reuters reported.

LIC's massive size and complex business structure and products make it a "nightmare" for lawyers to draft the prospectus, said Nitin Potdar, an M&A partner at top Indian law firm J. Sagar Associates. The unappealing fees are another dampener, said law firm partners, who spoke on condition of anonymity to avoid government reprisals.

2:13 P.M.

India approves relief measures for telecoms sector

India's federal cabinet on Wednesday approved a much-expected relief package for the country's cash-strapped telecoms sector, a senior government source said.

Shares in wireless carriers Bharti Airtel rose 5.4% and Vodafone Idea were up 2.9% at 0816 GMT on the news. The so-called relief package, which is likely to include a moratorium on payments for airwaves, will help India's three major wireless carriers including tycoon billionaire Mukesh Ambani's Reliance Jio but especially the embattled Vodafone Idea, Reuters reported.

2:08 P.M.

PE/VC investments rises to $10.7 bn in Aug; IPOs drive surge in exits

Investments by private equity and venture capital funds surged to $10.7 billion in August from $2.2 billion in the same month last year, and $9.7 billion in July this year.

Initial public offers (IPOs) like that of Zomato led to exits worth $7.3 billion in August, and took the overall number to $30.7 billion in 2021, PTI reported.

1:49 P.M.

Hero Vired ventures into corporate training and skill building with Vired for Business

Hero Vired introduced its B2B arm - Vired for Business. This B2B vertical will assist enterprises in upskilling employees, sourcing talent, recruiting new recruits, implementing internal learning programs, and setting up internal knowledge academies. Hero Vired for Business offers a customised curriculum in areas, such as Full Stack development, Data Science, Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence, Finance & Fintech, Game Design and Leadership, Entrepreneurial Thinking, and Innovation.

Hero Vired has integrated the MITx MicroMasters programs into its PG Certificate Programs. Learners who enroll in those PG certification programs will also receive a MicroMasters certificate on successful completion.

1:38 P.M.

EU to propose ban on products made by forced labour

The European Commission will propose an EU ban on products made by forced labour, its president Ursula von der Leyen said on Wednesday, adding that human dignity and freedom were more important than making money, Reuters reported.

1:36 P.M.

OneWeb launches satellites in global internet service push

British-based firm OneWeb launched 34 satellites into orbit from a cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, expanding its in-orbit constellation to 322 satellites, it said on Wednesday. The satellites lifted off from Kazakhstan's Baikonur cosmodrome at 1807 GMT on Tuesday.

OneWeb plans to launch a total of 648 low earth orbit satellites to roll out a high-speed global internet connection including to the most remote corners of the world, Reuters reported.

1:22 P.M.

China stocks fall on weak data, resurgence in virus cases

China stocks closed lower on Wednesday as weak factory and retail activity data weighed on sentiment, while the fresh COVID-19 outbreaks also raised concerns over China's economic recovery.

The blue-chip CSI300 index fell 1.0% to 4,867.32, while the Shanghai Composite Index lost 0.2% to 3,656.22, Reuters reported.

 

Indian bechmark indices, Sensex and Nifty opened flat today but rallied in the following trading hours. Zee Entertainment shares continued their good run after Rakesh Jhunjhunwala's Rare Enterprises and BofA Securities Europe SA bought its shares through open market transactions on Tuesday.

The inflation in U.K. hit a more than nine-year last month after the biggest monthly jump in the annual rate in at least 24 years. And, Apple launched its much awaited iPhone 13 along with iPad mini and latest version of iPad and iWatch on Tuesday.

12:45 P.M.

Zee Entertainment shares continue to rally, jump 15%

Shares of Zee Entertainment Enterprises continued to rally and further jumped 15% after Rakesh Jhunjhunwala's Rare Enterprises and BofA Securities Europe SA bought its shares through open market transactions, PTI reported.

The stock gained 12.86% to its 52-week high of ₹295.15 on BSE. At NSE, it surged 14.98% to its 52-week high of ₹300.75.

Shares of Zee Entertainment Enterprises Limited on Tuesday soared 40% after two investment firms sought the removal of the current Managing Director Punit Goenka from the board of the company.

12:25 P.M.

UK inflation rockets to 3.2% in biggest leap on record

British inflation hit a more than nine-year last month after the biggest monthly jump in the annual rate in at least 24 years, Reuters reported citing official data.

Consumer prices rose by 3.2% in annual terms in August after a 2.0% rise in July, the highest rate since March 2012, the Office for National Statistics said. The 1.2 percentage point rise in the annual rate of inflation in the space of a month marked the sharpest such increase since detailed records started in 1997.

The Office for National Statistics said the "Eat Out to Help Out" scheme that pushed down the price of restaurant meals in August of last year was the biggest factor behind the rise in inflation this year.

11:55 A.M.

Microsoft to buy back up to $60 billion in shares

Microsoft will buy back up to $60 billion in shares and raise its quarterly dividend by 11%, Reuters reported.

Microsoft said the buyback program has no expiration date and may be terminated at any time, and that it would pay a dividend of $0.62 per share - 6 cents over the previous quarter.

11:35 A.M.

Telangana govt forms panel for Hyderabad Metro Rail bail out

The Telangana government has formed a high-level committee to look into the pros and cons of supporting the loss-making Hyderabad Metro Rail, PTI reported.

L&T, which operates the Hyderabad metro rail had made several requests to the government it seeking support as the metro incurred heavy losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown.

The firm's losses widened to nearly ₹1,767 crore in FY21 from the previous year’s ₹382 crore on account of disruption in the metro rail operations due to low ridership and fall in footfalls at real estate operations.

11:15 A.M.

Ford's factory workers seek government help to safeguard jobs

Factory workers at Ford plant near Chennai have sought the state government's help to save their jobs as the carmaker announced it will stop making cars in India, Reuters reported citing workers and union leaders.

Union members said Ford's decision to stop production will put at risk the livelihoods of more than 2,600 permanent workers and over 1,000 contract staff.

The Centre of Indian Trade Union (CITU), organised a protest against the company's management and the Indian government earlier in Chennai on Monday.

11:00 A.M.

GST Council may consider bringing petrol, diesel under GST

The GST Council might consider taxing petrol, diesel and other petroleum products under the single national GST regime, PTI reported.

The Council comprises central and state finance ministers will meet in Lucknow on Friday. It is also likely to consider extending the time for duty relief on COVID-19 essentials.

GST is being thought to be a solution for the problem of near-record high petrol and diesel rates in the country, as it would end the cascading effect of tax on tax (state VAT being levied not just on the cost of production but also on the excise duty charged by the Centre on such output).

10:30 A.M.

Rakesh Jhunjhunwala buys 50 lakh Zee Entertainment shares

Rakesh Jhunjhunwala's Rare Enterprises Ltd and BofA Securities Europe SA on Tuesday bought shares of Zee Entertainment Enterprises worth over ₹225 crore amid the boardroom tussle in Zee.

Rare Enterprises bought 50 lakh shares of the company at ₹220.44 per share through a bulk deal on the National Stock Exchange. While BofA Securities Europe SA purchased 48.65 lakh shares at an average price of ₹236.2 apiece.

Rare Enterprises' purchase value stood at ₹110.22 crore while that of Bofa Securities Europe SA was ₹114.92 crore.

10:15 A.M.

India needs $8 trillion new greenfield assets to be $5 trillion economy by FY27

India will need $8 trillion (around ₹588 lakh crore) of gross capital formation or new greenfield assets to become a $5 trillion (around ₹368 lakh crore) economy by FY2027, PTI reported citing a Deloitte report.

It added that despite the COVID-19 disruption, FDI inflow into the country provides necessary optimism and display underlying strengths of the Indian economy.

In FY2020-21, FDI inflows (including equity, re-invested earnings, and capital) amounted to a record $81.72 billion, 10% higher than the previous financial year, it said.

9:45 A.M.

Apple launches iPhone 13

Apple launched the iPhone 13 and a new iPad mini at a media event dubbed California Streaming. The tech giant expanded 5G connectivity and revealed faster chips, and camera improvements.

Apple also launched the Watch Series 7, featuring a re-engineered Always-On Retina display that offers nearly 20% more screen area and thinner borders at just 1.7 millimetres — 40% smaller than those on Apple Watch Series 6.

India-based buyers can get iPhone 13 for ₹79,900, iPhone 13 mini for ₹69,900, iPhone 13 Pro for ₹1,19,900 and iPhone 13 Pro Max for ₹1,29,900 from Apple’s online store and authorised re-sellers, beginning at 5.30 pm IST on September 17, with availability beginning September 24. Whereas, Wi-Fi models of iPad mini are available with a starting price of ₹46,900.

9:25 A.M.

Sensex, Nifty open on a cautious note

The Indian equity benchmark indices, Sensex and Nifty opened flat amid mixed global cues. At 9:15, Sensex opened 0.18% higher at 58354.11 and Nifty opened 0.04% higher at 17387.65.

Among sectors, private banks and financial sectors traded lower while auto, media, FMCG and IT saw some buying.

9:15 A.M.

Oil rises after fall in stocks

Oil prices rose after industry data showed a larger than expected fall in crude oil stocks in the U.S. and on expectations that increased vaccine roll-out will spur demand, Reuters reported. 

Brent crude oil rose 0.5% to $73.99 a barrel while U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) also surged 0.5% to $70.90 a barrel.

"The impact of Hurricane Ida was a lot greater than many anticipated and production in the Gulf of Mexico region might struggle to return until Tropical Storm Nicholas is done pushing the region with territorial rain," Edward Moya, senior analyst at OANDA told Reuters.

9:00 A.M.

Asian shares fall after weak China data

Asian shares fell as weak Chinese economic data raised concerns about slowing global growth, Reuters reported.

Chinese data showed that retail sales missed analyst expectations and grew at the slowest pace since August 2020, and industrial output also rose at a weaker pace from July.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan fell 0.82%, and Tokyo's Nikkei was down 0.89%. Following the data, Chinese blue chips fell 0.73% and Hong Kong benchmark shed 0.87%.

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Printable version | Sep 21, 2021 3:57:43 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/business/business-news-live-asian-shares-fall-after-weak-china-data/article36466308.ece

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