Indian stock-index futures dropped after the benchmark gauge capped its longest rising streak in four months.
SGX CNX Nifty Index (NIFTY) futures for January delivery fell 0.3 percent to 8,443.5 as of 10 a.m. in Singapore. The underlying CNX Nifty Index surged 1.4 percent to 8,395.45 on Jan. 2. The S&P BSE Sensex (SENSEX) rallied 1.4 percent to 27,887.90, climbing for a sixth straight day. The Bank of New York Mellon India ADR Index of U.S.-traded shares jumped 2.3 percent to 1,470.12.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index (MXAP) slid 0.8 percent, set for its steepest loss in two weeks. The Sensex rose 30 percent in 2014, its sharpest rally since 2009 and the most among the world’s 20 biggest markets after China. Further gains in 2015 may hinge on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ability to push through reforms after opposition parties stalled the passage of some key bills.
“Currently, valuations of benchmarks are near the long term average,” Dipen Shah, head of private client group research at Kotak Securities Ltd., wrote in an e-mail on Jan. 2. “The government’s actions on getting reforms on track as well as a potential decline in interest rates are the likely triggers for a further re-rating in the medium-to-long term.”
The Sensex is valued at 15.3 times projected 12-month earnings, compared with the MSCI Emerging Markets Index’s multiple of 11 times.
The Reserve Bank of India on Dec. 2 maintained borrowing costs for a fifth meeting while signaling possible easing early this year. India’s consumer price index increased 4.38 percent in November from a year earlier, the least since the gauge was created in early 2012. Wholesale prices unexpectedly stagnated in November, a separate report showed Dec. 15.
Shares of state-owned banks may be in focus today. India is considering a proposal to create a holding company for the government’s stakes in 27 banks, Finance Secretary Hasmukh Adhia told reporters on Jan. 3 in Pune, near Mumbai. The move may make it easier for the lenders to raise capital as they struggle with the lowest profitability in at least nine years.
Global investors bought a net $ 4.4 million of local shares on Jan. 1. Foreigners purchased $ 16 billion of stocks last year.
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