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Rupee opens lower touches 71 per US dollar in early trade



 The Indian rupee opened on a cautious note and fell 7 paise to 71.00 against the US dollar in early trade on Friday tracking weak opening in domestic equities and foreign fund outflows. At the interbank foreign exchange, the rupee opened at 70.98 then fell to 71.00 against the dollar, showing a decline of 7 paise over its previous closing.

The Indian rupee on Thursday had closed at 70.93 against the dollar. Forex traders said the rupee pared its early gains despite the US-China signing the phase-1 trade deal, as huge uncertainty still remains, which might make it difficult for China and the US to reach a comprehensive trade deal.

The United States on Wednesday signed the first phase of a trade deal with China, which President Donald Trump described as historic, concluding more than a year of tough negotiations between the two largest economies of the world. Traders said rise in crude oil prices and foreign fund outflows weighed on the domestic unit.

Domestic bourses opened on a cautious note on Friday with benchmark indices Sensex trading 15.17 points up at 41,947.73 and Nifty lower by 9.85 points at 12,345.65. Foreign institutional investors (FIIs) remained net sellers in the capital markets, as they sold shares worth Rs 395.24 crore on Thursday, as per provisional data.

Meanwhile, brent crude futures, the global oil benchmark, eased by 0.03 per cent to USD 64.60 per barrel. The dollar index, which gauges the greenback’s strength against a basket of six currencies, rose 0.02 per cent to 97.34. The 10-year government bond yield was at 6.62 in morning trade.

Meanwhile, on the global front, US President Donald Trump on Wednesday refused to roll back the massive tariff imposed on import of Chinese goods despite having succeeded to sign the first phase of a trade deal with China. During a historic signing ceremony at the White House, Trump said he will roll back the tariffs only if the second phase of the trade deal is signed between the two economic giants.

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Covid Crisis: Sensex sinks 883 points



Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) Sensex ended 882.61 points or 1.81% lower at 47,949.42 while National Stock Exchange (NSE) Nifty tanked 258.40 points or 1.77% to 14,359.45.

Equity benchmark Sensex plummeted 883 points on April 19 following a massive across-the-board selloff as mounting COVID-19 cases spooked domestic investors. After crashing over 1,469 points in early trade, the 30-share BSE index pared some initial losses but still ended 882.61 points or 1.81% lower at 47,949.42.

Similarly, the broader NSE Nifty tanked 258.40 points or 1.77% to 14,359.45. PowerGrid was the top loser in the Sensex pack, slumping over 4%, followed by ONGC, IndusInd Bank, Kotak Bank, L&T, Asian Paints and Bajaj Auto. On the other hand, Dr Reddy’s and Infosys were the only gainers. Barring pharma and IT, which remained resilient, all key sectoral indices witnessed sharp correction.

Financials and automobiles witnessed steeper correction. Notably, volatility index soared by over 11%, which does not augur well. Investors’ wealth got eroded by over Rs 3 trillion today, he added.

India’s total tally of Covid-19 cases crossed 1.50 crore with a record single-day rise of 2,73,810 new coronavirus infections, while the active cases surpassed the 19-lakh mark, according to the Union Health Ministry data updated on April 19.

Elsewhere in Asia, bourses in Shanghai, Hong Kong, Seoul and Tokyo ended on a positive note. Stock exchanges in Europe were also largely trading with gains in mid-session deals. Meanwhile, international oil benchmark Brent crude was trading 0.25% lower at $66.60 per barrel.

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Flipkart beats Amazon in Diwali online sales!



Flipkart beats Amazon

The pandemic changed the buying behaviour drastically this year and accelerated the shift to e-commerce. This is evident from the increasing number of consumers reflected in the 88% customer growth as well as the higher frequency of shopping online while people celebrate slew of festivals including the festival of lights eventually leading to overall e-commerce market growth of 55% as compared to last year.

Also Read: Mamata is in deep trouble in West Bengal

According to Redseer, a management consulting firm, the festive sales from mid October to November clocked 8.3 billion $ in gross merchandise value(GMV) for the ecommerce sector which has increased significantly as compared to 5 billion $ during the festive month previous year. GMV has increased around 65% as compared to previous year. Flipkart, reportedly with 66 % of overall GMV has trumped Amazon this festive season with.

Out of 88 million shoppers who made the purchase this season through e-commerce, 55% come from Tier 2 towns whereas 45% from metros and Tier 1 cities. This number is huge when compared with 47 million shoppers the last season.

Also Read: Tata Sons, Vistara, Singapore Airlines might buy Air India?

According to Mrigank Gutgutia, director, e-commerce, RedSeer Consulting “One clear lesson from this festive season is that e-commerce has become more mainstream than ever. And it has proven that with the right assortment at the right prices which is delivered quickly in the safety of customer’s homes – the value proposition of e-commerce is very powerful. Thus, it is imperative for brands and sellers to shift their focus to online quickly and enable a seamless online experience for the customer in order to thrive in a post COVID world”

He also said that “The overall growth story has been very bullish this festive season. We had forecast $7 billion in sales but the actual figures surpassed our expectations clearly, showing how comfortable consumers have become with shopping online even in a pandemic-hit year.”

Flipkart experienced 40 % growth in its flagship event, Big Billion Days(BBD) as compared to last year. It was so well received that the ecommerce giant achieved its target only in three days of the week long sale. Amazon also witnessed their sellers reaching out to millions of customers but its sales in the first week was less than half to that of flipkart. The reason for the same is that flipkart has premium and value products hence catering to the not just to metro, tier1 but also tier 2 and tier 2 regions, unlike Amazon which is more targeted to metro and tier 1 customers.

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According to Redseer, despite the Indo-China relations being precarious which could have affected the supply chain, the ecommerce players maintained a high level of item availability.

Affordability along with aggressive tie-ups through brands and financing deals was the strategy used by ecommerce platforms to spur the demand which is enabling both the sellers and brands to recover after the pandemic due to online sales.

In the category mix, smartphones continue to dominate. Also due to forced shift to work and study from home, electronics and large appliances are witnessing increased sales.

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Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on country’s economic arrest



 India Ideas Summit
Recently Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman addresses the India Ideas Summit via video conferencing in New Delhi, She said that the Green shoots are visible and so interventions can happen in future with regard to this matter.

She also said that no sector will be in exclusive control of public sector and PSUs will be present only in pre determined strategic sectors.

She has noticed economic recovery happening both in rural and urban sectors through many governmental interventions.

Also Read: Ban on Chinese company to Cost Railways

While addressing the 2020 India Ideas Summit organized by the US India Business Council (USIBC), we have seen her stating that the,

” The green shoots are based on the high frequency indicators. We will go along as we watch them. It’s not as if we have concluded that the economy has seen green shoots and therefore, we won’t take any more steps. We have kept all the options necessary, absolutely open. The government is willing to participate, talk with everybody and see what best has to be done, interventions can happen even in the future depending on how the
industry responds.”

” During the lockdown the several things that have been done have now borne fruits that i can confidently tell you that we are able to see green shoots…the stimulus that we gave which has touched about 10 per cent of the GDP has actually made the difference for the companies which want to come out of the lockdown and the effects of the lockdown,” she said.

As regards to development in the rural sector the Finance Minister said that the, ” We have had a very good summer crop. All of what was necessary has been procured at reasonable price so that farmers are not left high and dry looking for purchasers. Now the estimate for the kharif crop has also come. We can clearly see the agriculture sector is driving the revival.”

Also Read: Where should India stand in new Cold War?

She also stated that the government and the industries have to work together for the economic development of the country and stated that this lockdown has helped most of us.

It looks like the the Finance Minister is putting more emphasis on both rural and urban sectors and various MSME’s because there has been an economic slowdown since the country is doing it’s best to recover from the ill effects of the corona pandemic.

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