Finance Minister’s announcements on the real estate sector that is expected this week would be keenly watched.

Markets likely to be choppy this week amid slowing economy US-China trade war
Money Stock Market Monday, September 02, 2019 - 12:19

The week gone by began trading on a very strong note and the markets were up for the first two days, followed by profit taking and August futures expiry.

Friday was another classic day and followed the previous Friday's pattern. The markets opened strong, turned negative and then had a very strong rally to close positive for the day. BSE Sensex ended the week with gains of 631.63 points or 1.72 per cent to close at 37,332.79 points, while Nifty gained 193.90 points or 1.79 per cent to close at 11,023.25 points. The broader indices saw BSE 100, BSE 200 and BSE 500 gain 2.06 per cent, 2.11 per cent and 2.16 per cent, respectively. BSE Midcap was up 2.01 per cent while BSE Smallcap was up 2.16 per cent.

It would be interesting to note that the low made on Friday was 36,829.81 points on BSE Sensex and 10,874.80 points on Nifty. These lows were higher than that of last Friday (August 23). Also, the rally from intra day low to close on Friday was over 500 points on the BSE Sensex and almost 150 points on Nifty.

Significantly, the markets were marginally positive on a weekly basis at the low of Friday and then rallied on the announcement of a press conference by the Finance Minister in the evening. This was similar to previous Friday as well.

Nifty futures for August expired on a negative note and were down 303.85 points or 2.70 per cent to close at 10,948.30 points. Dow Jones had a volatile week and gained 687.92 points or 2.68 per cent to close at 26,316.82 points. US President Donald Trump's tweets about China trade war continued to keep the US markets on its toes. The Indian rupee gained 26 paisa or 0.36 per cent to close at Rs 71.40 against the US Dollar.

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday evening announced that 10 PSU banks would be merged into four entities. Oriental Bank and United Bank will merge into Punjab National Bank, Syndicate Bank will merge into Canara Bank, Andhra Bank and Corporation Bank will merge into Union Bank of India while Allahabad Bank will merge into Indian Bank.

With the earlier merger of Dena Bank and Vijaya Bank into Bank of Baroda already fructified, the number of PSU banks with the latest round of amalgamation would shrink by six. The Finance Minister also announced that an approximate amount of Rs 55,250 crore would be infused into the PSU banks in the current year.

Earlier during the week, the government announced several measures to help revive manufacturing and economic activities in the country by revising the FDI rules. The government allowed 100 per cent FDI in single brand retail, coal mining, contract manufacturing and digital media.

GDP for the first quarter (April to June) of the current fiscal was at 5 per cent, the slowest level of growth since 2013. There are concerns about the economy and hence measures have been taken to revive demand and kickstart growth.

The Finance Minister has made two sets of announcements on consecutive Fridays and has helped in keeping the markets positive. Will a third announcement expected about the realty sector in the coming week come again on a Friday and have similar impact?

The week ahead has a trading holiday on Monday on account of Ganesh Chaturthi. Markets will be choppy and will take cues from the global markets where there seems to be no concrete resolution

happening anytime soon on the trade wars. India will also look at the auto numbers which are certainly not going to be encouraging. Further, the measures on the real estate sector would be keenly watched.

Play the market as it unfolds in the four-day week ahead. Announcements by the Finance Minister would be very keenly watched and tracked. While the markets would be choppy, carrying short positions forward may be a dangerous thing, as there is every possibility that FPIs may revert to their buying ways in the immediate near future.

(Arun Kejriwal is the founder of Kejriwal Research and Investment Services. The views expressed are personal.)

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