Market Update – October 2021

Indian equity markets ended September on a positive note and hit fresh record highs. Post the divergent performance in August between the broader market and headline indices, September witnessed gains across market cap. While Nifty 50 gained ~3%, S&P BSE Midcap and S&P BSE 250 Small cap indices also participated, gaining 6% each. News flow coming from US Federal Reserve meeting and a potential debt blowout in China kept the markets busy as well as cautious.

Debt crisis pertaining to one of the Chinese property developers, Evergrande, with its liabilities mounting to ~USD 300 billion surfaced, which led markets to worry about a possible contagion effect. However, the risk quickly receded with expectations of support from the Chinese government. Also, hints of starting Quantitative Easing (QE) tapering soon by US Federal Reserve also had some but not meaningful impact on global capital markets. The strength in US Dollar also led to some concerns, particularly in commodity stocks.

There has been significant momentum in the markets over the last few months which is also led by decent sectoral churn. What we are witnessing now is that laggard sectors of the last few years are now participating, including PSUs and Real Estate sector. We keep ourselves away from chasing momentum, while continuing to focus on businesses with sustainable profitability and decent ROEs. Fundamentals continue to remain strong even as we expect a very strong festive season led demand. We do expect near term volatility led by global or local news flow to continue, but corrections are expected to be short and swift.

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