Despite 16th November being a holiday for financial markets and for banks, the DIPAM went ahead with the bids for BPCL 52.98% stake held by the government. While Total of France and BP of UK had already opted out of the race, Reliance Industries and Aramco also opted not to participate in the bidding. While there has been no confirmation from Tuhin Pandey on the actual bids received, DIPAM sources have indicated that 3-4 bids had been received will be taken to the second stage after scrutiny. It is expected that ADNOC of Abu Dhabi and Vedanta group of Anil Agarwal, could be possible bidders.
With all forms of digital media being brought under the ambit of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, the government has asked all these digital players in the news and current affairs segment to adhere to the 26% FDI norm within one month. All such portals will have to give a declaration of foreign ownership in digital channels as well as names and addresses of immediate and even beneficial owners of such digital channels. Apart from these digital news channels, the centre has also brought OTT channels like Disney Hotstar, Amazon Prime and Netflix also under the ambit of I&B regulation. Also, any fresh foreign investment in any of these digital news or OTT channels will require prior approval of the DPIIT. Security clearance is needed for any foreign personnel deployed beyond 60 days.
Even as the vaccine under study by Pfizer and Biontech claimed 90% effectiveness based on interim data, Moderna of Germany has claimed that its vaccine candidate delivers 95% effectiveness. This makes the Moderna vaccine more preferred among the buyers. There is an additional advantage for Moderna. Pfizer vaccine needs to be stored at -74 degrees Celsius, something not normally available for commercial use. Moderna vaccine can be stored at more normal cooling temperatures making it more viable. Of course, the race for the vaccine has just begun and could have more twists and turns later.
Navneet Munoth, current head of SBI MF, will take over from Milind Barve as the Managing Director and CEO of HDFC MF. Over the last couple of years, HDFC funds have lagged their peers and even in terms of AUM, it has fallen behind. While HDFC MF manages Rs.375,000 crore, SBI MF is already managing close to Rs.450,000 crore. Barve had hinted at his intention to exit in Jan-21 when his term gets over. Munoth has been responsible for the aggressive growth of SBI MF and it now remains to be seen what Prashant Jain, the current CIO of HDFC MF, would do although he has denied rumours that he was quitting.
At a time when the CPI inflation has scaled a 6-year high, the WPI inflation announced on 16 November has also touched an 8-month high at 1.48% in Oct-20 compared to just 1.32% in the month of Sep-20. The trigger for higher WPI inflation did not come from food products but from metals and pharma. At least, the positive cue from the data is that the higher consumer inflation is finally translating into higher yields for the producers too. Most economists are of the view that with recent trends in CPI and WPI inflation, Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) would maintain status quo in Dec-20 and Feb-21 policies.
For the Samvat 2076 just concluded, it is not just the mid cap stocks but even the Nifty stocks that have done extremely well. A total of 10 Nifty stocks gave positive returns of more than 25% of which 5 stocks gave returns of more than 50%. The Nifty overall gave returns of only around 11.3% during Samvat 2076. If you look at the top-5 stocks, they are dominated by IT and pharma. While Divi’s Labs gave 94.9% returns, Infosys gave 76.2%, Reddy Labs 74.2%, Cipla 62.2% and JSW Steel 57.7%. Heavyweight Reliance gave 39.8% returns during Samvat 2076, Wipro 36.2% and Tata Steel 34.6%. Bharti and Airtel also returned 25% returns during the Samvat 2076. A total of 30 stocks in Nifty gave positive returns and 20 gave negative returns in Samvat 2076. ONGC lost 48% while IOCL and IndusInd lost over 40% each.