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Indian Shares Seen Opening Firm

Indian shares are seen opening slightly higher on Thursday after RBI governor D Subbarao said there is scope for further rate cuts this year, should the government brings down the subsidy bill and the external situation improves.

That said, Asian markets are trading on a mixed note as concerns that Spain may be forced to seek a bailout and growing worries over Portugal's economic health tempered optimism from data showing a rebound in Japan's exports.

Traders also await bond auctions in France and Spain after a report released by the Bank of Spain showed that bad loan ratio at Spanish banks rose to 8.16 percent of the total loans held by banks in February, marking the highest recorded since May 1994.

U.S. stocks ended moderately lower overnight, with a negative reaction to the latest batch of earnings news from Intel and IBM and lingering concerns about the financial situation in Europe contributing to the weakness. The Dow fell 0.6 percent, the tech-heavy Nasdaq slid 0.4 percent and the S&P 500 shed 0.4 percent.

Closer homes, shares ended off their day's highs on Wednesday, as a retreat in European markets on worries over Spain's financial health prompted investors to pare long positions late in the session. The benchmark BSE Sensex ended up 34 points or 0.2 percent at 17,392, while the broader Nifty index rose by 10 points or 0.19 percent to 5,300.

by RTT Staff Writer

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