THE WEEKLY FINANCIAL NEWS
Officials urge patience as the Fed continues to trim the purchases.
Even as the indices closed the first week of the New Year in deep red, leading global brokerage Credit Suisse today said it is "overweight" on Indian stock markets as the cyclicals are set to outperform defensives driven by the forthcoming elections.
The government's zealousness in squeezing expenditure to meet the fiscal deficit target, either by delaying payments or not awarding new contracts, may be hurting those most vulnerable to such tightening — small and micro enterprises, self-employed professionals and the retail trade.
The global economy had another difficult year in 2013. The advanced economies’ below-trend growth continued, with output rising at an average annual rate of about 1%, while many emerging markets experienced a slowdown to below-trend 4.8% growth. The economic performance will pick up modestly in both advanced economies and emerging markets this year with advanced economies rising at an average rate of 1.9% and emerging markets growing faster in 2014- closer to 5% year-on-year.
Will inflation recede? Will the current account deficit remain under control? Will the government meet its fiscal deficit target? Will investment activity pick up? Will the effect of quantitative easing be benign? The answers to these five questions will be important for the Indian economy in the coming months.
The HSBC manufacturing purchasing managers’ index (PMI), compiled by Markit, fell to 50.7 in December from 51.3 in the previous month. The index, which gauges business activity in Indian factories but not its utilities, spent three months below the 50 mark that separates growth from contraction before rising above it in November.
For the top 20 public sector banks, net NPAs plus recast loans make up for as much as 96% of their net worth at the end of September. 2014 will be a year of uncertainty for the banking industry. The light at the end of the tunnel will begin to shine only when the economy strengthens.
Besides, proposing 100 per cent FDI through automatic route in the cash-starved railway sector, the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) has also proposed to de-license and de-reserve few areas of the sector. "The Commerce and Industry Ministry has sent the cabinet note on the matter and a decision is likely to be taken this this month only."
Flows from FIIs in Indian equities are likely to continue at the same pace as we saw them in 2013. But there are two key concerns—the state of the domestic economy and potential increase in Fed’s tapering.
Macroeconomic factors, other than lack of faith, are likely to be speed breakers for M&A’s growth momentum in the immediate future.