Financial Market Overview
19th December, 2018
- The Indian rupee rose for a third day to a near-three-week high against the dollar, tracking an overnight slump in crude oil prices, while investors awaited the U.S. Federal Reserve’s decision on interest rates and future guidance later today.
- The rupee settled at 70.40 to a dollar, highest since Nov. 30, against 70.44 at close yesterday. After opening at 70.10, the currency had risen to 69.85 earlier in the session. However, it pared some early gains on dollar bids from at least one state-run bank and a private lender likely on the instruction of the Reserve Bank of India.
- Fall in crude oil prices strengthened the rupee while inflows into local equities this month also helped it to make gains.
- Bulls continued their momentum on Wednesday as fall in crude oil prices spurred the rally in equities. The Nifty managed to end above 10,900-mark.
- Among sectors, banks, automobiles, consumption, and infrastructure names were the big gainers, while the Nifty Midcap index rose over a percent. IT and pharma were the big losers.
- At the close of market hours, the Sensex was up 137.25 points or 0.38% at 36484.33, and the Nifty up 52.80 points or 0.48% at 10961.50.
- The market breadth was positive as 1594 shares advanced, against a decline of 984 shares, while 147 shares were unchanged. The day began on a positive note as Sensex gained around 100 points, while the Nifty clocked 10,900 in the opening tick.
- European markets are higher today with shares in London leading the region. The FTSE 100 is up 0.68% while Germany’s DAX is up 0.40% and France’s CAC 40 is up 0.32%.
- The S&P 500 ended little changed in a choppy trading session on Tuesday as the possibility of a partial government shutdown added to investors’ jitters ahead of a highly anticipated meeting of the Federal Reserve.
- The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 82.52 points, or 0.35 percent, to 23,675.5, the S&P 500 gained 0.21 points, or 0.01 percent, to 2,546.15 and the Nasdaq Composite added 30.18 points, or 0.45 percent, to 6,783.91.
- The annual rate of change in Britain’s consumer price index dropped to its lowest level in 21-months in November, underlining the case for the Bank of England to hold off on further policy tightening. Year-on-year, UK CPI rose 2.3% last month, its lowest level since March 2017, after a 2.4% increase in October.
- Japan’s popular perception of the country’s ties with the United States worsened significantly this year, an opinion poll showed on Wednesday, battered by U.S. President Donald Trump’s hostile trade policies. The annual poll by Gallup and the Yomiuri newspaper showed the proportion of Japanese people who see the relationship between world’s largest and third-largest economies as “good” posting its largest decline since 2000.
- The U.S. Federal Reserve is expected to raise interest rates on Wednesday, but may cut the number of hikes it anticipates next year and signal an earlier end to its monetary tightening in the face of financial market volatility and rising recession fears. The central bank is due to announce its decision at 2 p.m. after its final two-day policy meeting of the year. Fed Chairman Jerome Powell is scheduled to hold a press conference half an hour later.