Sensex, Nifty Extend Rally; Realty Shares Advance

Indian equity benchmarks extended gains for the fifth day and are set for their longest winning streak in over three months. The S&P BSE Sensex Index rose as much as 0.4 percent to 36,315.42 and the NSE Nifty 50 Index rose as much as 0.36 percent to 10,898.15.

The market breadth was tilted in favour of buyers. Nine out of 11 sectoral gauges compiled by NSE advanced, led by the NSE Nifty Media Index’s 1.07 percent gain. On the flipside, the NSE Nifty Bank Index was the top sectoral loser, down 0.1 percent.

Tata Motors Decline As JLR Halts Engine Plant
Shares of the Jaguar Land Rover owner fell as much as 3.9 percent to Rs 170.35, its lowest in over a month.

The company’s Jaguar Land Rover temporarily halted operations at its engine factory for a two-week production freeze in English Midlands, according to a Bloomberg report.

The company said that the shutdown concerns EMC’s machine and assembly halls. Affected staff will continue to receive full pay during the freeze and maintenance and salaried staff will continue as usual.

The company also stated that infrastructure work related to Solihull’s production of next-generation Range Rover also requires changes to the production schedule, the report said further. The stock was the worst performer on Sensex and Nifty.

Housing Finance Companies Rally As RBI Relax Norms
Shares of the housing finance companies rallied in today’s trade. The Reserve Bank of India said that the minimum holding period requirement for NBFC originating loans, will now be set at six monthly or two quarterly instalments, the Central Bank said in a notification yesterday.

Earlier, the holding period was 12 months. The revised rules were applicable for loans of original maturity of over five years. This will help housing finance companies, especially those who have longer maturity loans.

Asian Oilfield Services Extend Rally After Order Win
Shares of Asian Oilfield Services extended gains for the fifth day and is set for its longest winning streak in over a month. The stock rose as much as 4.9 percent to Rs 83.70.

The company received a contract worth Rs 27.65 crore from ONGC to provide seismic data acquisition services in northern India. Trading volume was five times its 20-day average.

Vodafone Idea Falls After CRISIL Downgrade
Shares of Vodafone Idea fell as much as 5 percent to Rs 35.95. The stock declined for four days in five.

The Rating Agency CRISIL downgraded NCDs worth Rs 6,000 crore to CRISIL A+ from CRISIL AA-. Ratings for commercial papers reaffirmed at CRISIL A1+. The downgrade reflects continued pricing pressure in the mobile telephone industry, leading to weak operating performance.

CRISIL expects the net debt to remain over Rs 85,000 crore by the end of March. The rating agency believed that the credit risk profile of the combined entity will continue to be affected by competition, while the quantum and timeliness of synergy benefits will be key rating sensitivity factors.