Markets to remain open on budget day, volatility expected

Mumbai, Feb 21:

Indian stock markets will be open for regular trading on budget day Feb 28 as both foreign and domestic investors anxiously wait for the government to usher in more reforms.

stock_exchange sensex“Trading members are hereby informed that markets shall remain open for regular trading hours on the day of presentation of the union budget for the year 2015-16 on February 28, 2015,” said Ketan Jantre, general manager, trading operations, Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) in a notice issued late Friday night.

The development comes after the market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) directed the stock exchanges to remain open for trading on the budget day.

Earlier, the stock brokers body – association of national exchanges members of India, had requested Sebi to keep the markets open on budget day.

They had requested the market regulator in a letter dated Feb 4 to keep the markets open in the interest of investors.

The body had cited that the move will allow the investors make wise decisions on their investments based on the budget policy.

The railway and union budget are the major triggers for the markets. High hopes have been attached to the budget for further reforms and greater policy initiative to usher in investments.

“We expect market to remain volatile on account of key event of railway and union budget 2015-16 along with the expiry of February series,” Mahnot added.

Parliament will commence the budget session on Feb 23. The railway budget will be presented on Feb 26, which will be followed by the economic survey on Feb 27 and the union budget on Feb 28.

Other analysts predicted that going ahead, the pre-budget expectations will start building up and the corresponding sectors may see increased interest.

“Post the sharp fall seen in 1st week of February we have quickly moved ahead to pre-budget rally. The main factor to this rally is high expectation,” said Vinod Nair, head – fundamental research, Geojit BNP Paribas Financial Services.

According to Nair, market has moved ahead of the disappointing quarterly numbers phase and is focusing on post budget scenario of increased infrastructure spending, better platform and incentives to manufacturing sectors.

“As we are moving higher, the risk on momentum is increasing; hence market needs a good budget to continue,” Nair added.

The strong expectations of further reforms in the upcoming budget is attributed to lead the benchmark index of Indian equities markets to gain 136.48 points or 0.46 percent during the week ended Feb 20.

The expectations of pro-reforms and investment budget also lead foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) to became net buyers in the Indian equities market for the week ended Feb 20.

For the week ended Feb 20, the FPIs bought stocks worth Rs.4,334.55 crore or $697.6 million, according to data with the National Securities Depository Limited (NSDL). IANS

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