It was coming for some and India finally put a temporary hold on all exports of Covishield, the AstraZeneca COVID vaccine manufactured by Serum Institute of India. The idea is to meet the rising tide of infections domestically as the cases escalated. It will hinder supplies to the WHO program, which is likely to benefit over 180 countries. Till date, Serum Institute has shipped 6.05 crore doses of which 1.77 crore have gone to the WHO COVAX program. However, vaccine exports have been frozen since Thursday as India expands its own immunization efforts. Exports are likely to remain on hold till the India situation stabilizes.
March may have been a blockbuster month for IPOs, but other equity transactions like QIP placements and follow-on offerings have not lagged too far behind. Investment banks have confirmed that most of the companies are making a dash to raise capital before the year-end fearing a spike in Coronavirus cases in the near future. More than 5 companies have raised Rs.9,300 crore via QIPs even as existing investors and promoters divested equity holdings worth Rs.14,200 crore via block deals and OFS. The biggest block transactions in March were the sale of BPCL treasury shares worth Rs.5,525 crore and the sale of 4.3% in SBI Life by Carlyle for Rs.3944 crore. Godrej Properties did a QIP fund raising worth Rs.3750 crore. Most small and mid-cap companies are desperate for funds to retire debt. Of course, index needs to be stable.
Adani Road Transport Ltd won a Rs.1040 crore highway project from NHAI in the state of Telangana. The project entails the four-laning of NH-365A from Kodad to Khammam on Hybrid Annuity Mode. The total construction period of the project will be 2 years and operation period will be 15 years. Adani Road is a 100% subsidiary of Adani Enterprises Limited, one of the Rockstar performers in the stock markets during the current financial year. If you add this project, Adani Group has 8 NHAI road projects under HAM and TOT across the states of Chhattisgarh, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Kerala and Gujarat.
The Rs.453 crore IPO of Barbeque Nation was oversubscribed 1.33 times on day-1 itself. Barbeque Nation received 66.46 lakh bids for a total of 49.99 lakh shares of which 42.87 lakh bids were at the cut-off price. The retail portion was subscribed 3.48 times but that could be more because the retail allocation in the IPO is just 10% while QIBs have 75%. Normally, the HNI portion and the QIB portion get response on the last day. Barbeque Nation had fixed the price band of the offer at Rs.498-500 per share. The IPO comprises of a fresh issue of Rs.180 crore and an offer for sale of Rs.273 crore. Minimum lot size for IPO is 30 shares.
Oil rebounded, following the sell-off on Tuesday as the Suez Canal blockade raised fears of supply. This is nothing like the Suez Canal blockade of 1967, but purely caused by a container ship running aground. Also, Suez Canal now plays a much smaller role in global oil trade. Despite efforts to move the vessel, it is expected to block the route for several days. Crude was also boosted by positive economic data as Europe posted record increase in factory output. The recent spike in COVID cases had resulted in oil prices falling over 12% from recent peaks. The Suez Canal is regularly used to move oil from Middle East to Europe.
While the FM has agreed to discuss the subject of GST on petrol and diesel at the next GST Council meet, BJP strongman from Bihar, Sushil Modi, was quite emphatic that GST on petrol and diesel was ruled out for the next 8-10 years. Sushil Modi was of the view that no state would be willing to face annual revenue loss of Rs.200,000 crore in the current financial situation. Currently, the centre and states collectively earn Rs.500,000 crore as tax on petroleum products. Congress has been on the forefront demanding that petrol and diesel be brought under the GST regime. Sushil Modi even pointed out that not a single state leader from the Congress had raised this issue. If petrol and diesel are put under GST, then the centre will have to compensate states for the annual loss of Rs.2 trillion, which looks impractical in this fiscal scenario.