Wed, 27 Sep 2023

New Delhi [India], June 6 (ANI): Indian stock indices were steady Tuesday as investors shift focus to the Reserve Bank of India's bi-monthly monetary policy review for fresh market cues.

Benchmark Sensex moved in a range of 62,554-62787 points, and closed with minor 5 points gains.

Investors eye policy outcome of the meeting, headed by RBI governor Shaktikanta Das, to be announced Thursday. A majority of analysts expect the RBI will continue to keep the repo rate unchanged at 6.5 per cent.

A consistent decline in inflation (currently at 18-month low) and its potential for further decline may prompt the central bank to put the brake on the rate again.

RBI's consistent monetary policy tightening since mid-2022 could be attributed to the substantial decline in inflation numbers in the country.

The RBI in its April meeting paused the repo rate. SBI Research said it expects the RBI to again pause repo rate in June policy meet.

Barring April pause, the RBI raised the repo rate by 250 basis points cumulatively to 6.5 per cent since May 2022 in the fight against inflation.

Raising interest rates is a monetary policy instrument that typically helps suppress demand in the economy, thereby helping the inflation rate decline.

"Going ahead an important influencer will be the commentary on growth and inflation forecasts by the RBI following its MPC meeting given the general consensus that rate pause will continue," said Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services.

Besides putting a brake on the interest, the RBI may also give fresh outlook on growth and inflation 2023-24 after GDP numbers for 2022-23 came above estimated figures. As per the provisional estimates released by the National Statistical Office (NSO) recently, real GDP growth for 2022-23 stood at 7.2 per cent, higher than the 7 per cent projected.

According to Siddhartha Khemka, Head - Retail Research, Motilal Oswal Financial Services, "Nifty opened flat and remained under pressure throughout the day. However, in the last half hour index recovered from the day's low to close with minuscule gains (5 points) at 18,599 levels. Sectorially it was a mixed bag with buying seen in Realty and Auto stocks."Meanwhile, Morgan Stanley expects India's benchmark stock index Sensex, in base case scenario, to be around 68,500 by the end of 2023, implying a 10 per cent increase from its present levels.

This, it assumed taking into account there is no major rise in commodity prices -- especially oil and fertilizer, stable domestic growth, the US does not slipping into a recession, and supportive government policies in India.

At present, Sensex is trading at 62,629 points. So far this year and over the past year, it rose 2.4 per cent and 12.5 per cent, respectively.

Morgan Stanley in its report titled 'India Equity Strategy Playbook: India's Transformation and Its Implications', prepared by Ridham Desai, Sheela Rathi, Nayant Parekh said India's equity market continues to be attractive despite a relatively high valuations -- largely due to strong earnings growth prospects and a swelling bid from both domestic and foreign investors. (ANI)

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