• Asian shares decline
• Government wants IPOs for subsidiaries of state-owned companies
• Nalco disinvestment soon
• Investor interest waning?
• Government to decide on cotton exports today
• Oil prices fall as Iran agrees to resume talks
Asian shares decline
Asian stocks are declining at the start of the week registered fourth straight day of losses. This is the largest losing stretch since November 2011 for the MSCI Asia Pac index that fell 0.5 per cent. Japan's Nikkei average index opened down 1.3 percent and is headed for the biggest five-day loss since August last year. Markets in Australia, Hong Kong, New Zealand and Philippines are closed today for Easter holidays. Meanwhile, the US economy added 120,000 jobs, lowest in five months. Earnings will come to the fore this week, with bellwethers Google and JP Morgan Chase expected to report results.
Government wants IPOs for subsidiaries of state-owned companies
The government is mulling a proposal for encouraging profitable subsidiaries of public sector units (PSUs) to seek listing and raise funds from the capital market. The department of disinvestment has called a meeting, this week, to discuss the proposal with representatives of the concerned ministries including coal and petroleum. The listing of subsidiaries will help in raising resources for the PSUs and paying better dividends to the government.
Nalco disinvestment soon
Nalco, the state-run aluminum maker, has said the government proposes to only offload its equity in the company as part of the disinvestment programme. The company said that the government is looking to cut its holding in the company and the company did not need funds for own growth. The Government holds 87.15% stake in Nalco . Nalco has enough cash for next three to four years.
Investor interest waning?
During the just-ended financial year 2011-12, a total of about 9.5 lakh new investor accounts were opened in the country, according to Sebi data. This is almost half of about 19 lakh new accounts opened during the previous fiscal, 2010-11. Currently, India has about two crore demat accounts, which are mandatory for investors to trade in the market.
Government to decide on cotton exports today
A Group of Ministers (GoM) will meet today to discuss whether to allow additional cotton exports in the 2011-12 marketing year ending September. After a series of knee-jerk reactions in March, today government again intends to decide on the vexed question of cotton exports that is rapidly acquiring a political life of its own. On March 12, the government had lifted the ban on cotton exports, which was imposed on March 5, following political pressure. However, the commerce ministry had stopped fresh registration of export contracts till further order.
Oil prices fall as Iran agrees to resume talks
Brent crude slipped more than $1 on Monday as Iran agreed to resume talks with top world powers this week on the country's nuclear programme, raising hopes of a peaceful end to the standoff. Prices were also under pressure on demand growth concerns after data showed US employers hired far fewer workers in March than in previous months. Job growth in the world's biggest oil consumer slowed to 120,000, the smallest increase since October. US oil traded $1.08 a barrel lower at $102.23.