RTTNews - Thursday, the Indian market is likely to open lower amid weak global cues. Additionally, concerns that valuations have become expensive may lead to further profit taking. That said, investors look forward to President Pratibha Patil's address to a joint session of both houses on Thursday, as she formally discloses the agenda of the UPA coalition government. Inflation report, which is scheduled to be released later in the day, may also influence market movement.

On Wednesday, foreign institutional investors bought shares worth Rs.32.80 crore on a net basis and domestic institutional investors bought shares worth Rs.52.89 crore, provisional data released by stock exchanges showed. Meanwhile, market regulator SEBI data showed that foreign funds bought shares worth Rs.209.30 crore on Tuesday.

On Wall Street, the major U.S. averages snapped their four-day winning streak overnight, as traders chose to take profits on the back of some discouraging economic data. The U.S services sector contracted for the eighth straight month in May and employment data from the world's biggest economy has also turned out to be a bit disappointing.

Comments by the U.S. Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke that US budget deficits threaten financial stability and the government could not continue indefinitely to borrow at the current rate to finance the shortfall also affected investor sentiment. Despite some late buying, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down 0.75%, the Nasdaq Composite fell 0.59% and the S&P 500 index ended down 1.37%.

The Indian ADRs also closed mostly lower. ICICI Bank tumbled 5.6%, Infosys declined 2.38%, Wipro fell 2.48%, Sterlite shed 2.29% and HDFC Bank ended down 2.25%, but MTNL jumped 5.47% and Satyam Computers climbed 22.91%.

After falling to as low as $64.95 during intraday activity, crude oil futures recouped some of its losses and settled lower at $66.12 a barrel, down $2.43 in New York trading on Wednesday, dragged down by an unexpected build in U.S. crude stockpiles and a stronger dollar.

Crude oil inventories in the world's top consumer jumped by 2.9 million barrels last week as imports rose, according to data from the US Energy Information Administration. Total US fuel demand over the four weeks ending May 29 fell by 7.7% against year-ago levels and U.S. gasoline demand over the period, which included the Memorial Day holiday weekend that traditionally kicks off summer driving season, was down 0.4% from last year.

Meanwhile, the rupee rose to its highest in seven months on Wednesday, but pared its early gains to finish almost unchanged at Rs.47.03 against the dollar.

On Wednesday, the Indian market cut its early gains and finished almost unchanged, as profit taking following sharp gains in the past few weeks weighed on market movement.

While the BSE Sensex finished at 14,871, down 4 points or 0.03%, the S&P CNX Nifty rose 5 points or a modest 0.12% to 4,531. However, second-line indexes ended with significant gains. The broad-based BSE 500 index rose 0.56%, the mid-cap index gained 1.50% and the small-cap index added 2.11%. The market breadth was fairly positive. Advancers outnumbered decliners by 2019 to 790 and 49 stocks closed unchanged.

Stocks to Watch

Aviation stocks could be in the spotlight amid reports that the government is in no hurry to push further foreign direct investment in the industry and that there was no bailout package on cards to protect the industry from losses.

Pantaloon Retail may move on reports that it has postponed its restructuring as it awaits changes in foreign investment norms for multi-brand retail.

Religare Enterprises may see some activity following reports that it may revise its rights issue price from Rs.355 to around Rs.400 per share.

GVK Power and Infrastructure could be in focus on reports that it plans to raise about Rs2, 500 crore through the qualified institutional placement route.

Kotak Mahindra Bank may move after the bank said that Anand Mahindra has ceased to be a promoter of the bank.

NALCO could be in focus after it reported an 81% drop in its fourth quarter net profit on lower aluminum prices.

For comments and feedback: contact editorial@rttnews.com