Sensex surges over 200 points; Tata Motors top mover

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The benchmark indices on Thursday continued to trade higher tracking positive trend seen in Asian markets after minutes from the US Federal Reserve's December policy meeting, released overnight, suggested a less hawkish stance from policymakers.

Gains were, however, capped by inconclusive Goods and Services Tax (GST) meeting which ended yesterday. 

At 11:37 am, the S&P BSE Sensex was trading at 26,838, up 205 points, while the broader Nifty50 was ruling at 8,253, up 63 points. 

Broader market outperformed the headline indices with BSE Midcap and BSE Smallcap gaining 0.8% each. 

"The 8,225 region kept a lid on Wednesday’s uppish attempts, but the firm support offered on every dips suggest that more upsides are in order. This brings the 8,250-8,300 objectives in play and the downside pivot will have to be pushed higher towards 8,187. This automoatically means that the 8,580 view is already in play, but, inability to float above 8,250 or a slippage past 8187-60 could tilt the bullish bias in favour of volatility," said brokerage Geojit BNP Paribas in a technical note.

Sectors and stocks

BSE Auto index (up 1.2%) was the leading sectoral gainer, led by gains in Tata Motors (up 3%), Motherson Sumi (up 1.8%), Bharat Forge (up 1.4%) and Bosche (1.4%). BSE Industrials (up 1%), BSE Metal (up 0.9%) and BSE Oil & Gas (0.8%) included other sectoral movers.

Among individual stocks, Tata Motors was up 3% to Rs 503 in intra-day trade after Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) reported a strong 30% jump in US sales at 12,573 units in December 2016 against 9,638 units a year earlier.

Petron Engineering advanced over 8% after the company on Wednesday said it has received Letter of Intent from Shree Cement, for civil work of plant building & silos and misc. work at their Orissa Grinding Project for contract value of Rs 33 crore. 

Sun Pharma added 2% after the pharma major announced successful Phase 3 confirmatory clinical trial results for Seciera for the treatment of dry eye disease. 

GST: April implementation looks unlikely

An impasse over the division of administrative turf between the Centre and states, higher compensation due to demonetisation and definition of coastal states persisted at GST Council, indicating that a roll-out of the new indirect tax regime is difficult not only from April 1, but also from July 1, 2017. 

The Council, comprising the Union finance minister, Union minister of state for revenue and representatives of states, would now meet on January 16 to resolve these tricky issues ahead of the Budget session, to start from January 31. 

Minutes from Fed policy meet

The Fed policymakers noted upside risk to growth forecasts, but remained uncertain about the President-elect Donald Trump's promises of tax cuts, infrastructure spending and deregulation. Members suggested aggressive path of rate increases only if inflationary pressures rise. 

The central bank's policy-setting committee unanimously raised interest rates last month by a quarter of a point and policymakers signaled a faster pace of rate increases in 2017 than previously expected. That was seen as the Fed's first reaction to Trump's victory in the November 8 election.

Global markets

Asian stocks edged higher underpinned by a firm Wall Street. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific stocks outside Japan gained 0.2%, on track for a eighth consecutive session of gains. Australian markets rose 0.4%. China's Shanghai Composite was up 0.1%, Hong Kong's Hang Seng added 1.1%, while Japan's Nikkei bucked the trend to lose 0.3%. 

Overnight, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.3% to end at 19,942.16 and the S&P 500 gained 0.57% to 2,270.75 after minutes showed most Federal Reserve policymakers thought the economy could grow more quickly because of fiscal stimulus under the Trump administration.

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