Life is not a template and neither is mine. Like several who have worked as journalists, I am a generalist in my over two decade experience across print, global news wires and dotcom firms. But there has been one underlying theme in each phase; life gave me the chance to observe and tell a story -- from early days tracking a securities scam to terror attacks and some of India's most significant court trials. Besides writing, I have jumped fences to become an entrepreneur, as an investment advisor -- and also taught the finer aspects of business journalism to young minds. At Forbes India, I also keep an eye on some of its proprietary specials like the Rich list, GenNext and Celebrity lists. An alumnus of Xavier Institute of Communications and H.R College of Commerce and Economics in Mumbai, I have worked for organisations such as Agence France-Presse, Business Standard, The Financial Express and The Times of India prior to this.
India’s equity markets briefly hit the 30,000 points mark at the end of last week despite the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) deciding to keep the policy repo rate unchanged. By the end of last week, global geo-political tensions rose after the United States attacked a Syrian air base in response to a suspected chemical weapons attack on civilians in the town of Khan Shaykhun in Idlib province of northwest Syria. US equities edged down last Friday. US equity markets will be closely watched this week.
Much of the focus this week will shift to domestic factors, including the Q4FY17 earnings, which start with the IT major Infosys on April 13. The markets are likely to move in a range-bound manner, with news and data-driven information likely to impact stock movements and investment decisions.
India Q4FY17 (January to March) earnings data
The Q3FY17 earnings were a mixed bag. Commodity-driven businesses and banks are likely to witness improved earnings in the March-ended quarter, but the challenge for most will be to up volume and margins growth for their businesses. Most IT firms’ earnings could be weighed down by the firm rupee (64.49 to the US dollar), as it will impact operating profit margins for these export-oriented firms.
India consumer price index (CPI) inflation; industrial production data
Retail inflation data for the month of March 2017 will be announced on Wednesday (April 12) and will be closely monitored not just by industry watchers but also the central bank, which in its last policy statement made a reference to rising inflationary pressures. CPI for February edged up to 3.65 percent, as food prices continue to rise. The index for industrial production (IIP) data for February-related data will also be unveiled this week.
China CPI, geo-political risks
China will report its consumer price index (CPI) data for March 2017 on Wednesday. After the Syria attack, global oil prices have risen and are likely to remain firm. Any further event which heightens geopolitical risks will be closely watched in coming weeks.