Posts Tagged ‘currency’

SHIFT IN GOLD DEMAND: PERFORMANCE OF ETFs

Gold’s appeal as an alternative investment option remains high. Historically equities have performed better than gold barring certain minor aberrations here and there. However, asset allocation is an important aspect of any investment strategy. By balancing asset classes of different correlations, investors hope to maximize returns and minimize risk. While many investors may believe that their portfolios are adequately diversified, they typically contain only three asset classes – stocks, bonds/fixed income instruments and cash. To counter adverse movements in a particular asset or asset class, many investors now strive to achieve more effective diversification in their portfolios by incorporating alternative investments such as commodities. While gold has shown strong returns over recent years, its most valuable contribution to a portfolio lies in the fact that it is not correlated with most other assets. This is because the gold price is not driven by the same factors that drive the performance of other assets. Demand for gold may continue to rise as investors diversify their portfolio with an asset that is not correlated with the equity markets. In the melt down seen in 2008-09, gold was not correlated with the other assets and hence saved.

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Gold’s price action in the past few months has frustrated many traders. High volatility in prices created much risk for the investors as well as for intra day traders. At this time ETFs plays a major role as Gold ETFs provides investors a means of participating in the gold bullion market without the necessity of taking physical delivery of gold, and to buy and sell that participation through the trading of a security on stock exchange. Gold ETF would be a passive investment; so, when gold prices move up, the ETF appreciates and when gold prices move down, the ETF loses value. Each unit is approximately equal to price of 1 gram gold. But, there are Gold ETFs which also provide a unit which is approximately equal to the price of ½ gram of gold.

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Gold exchange traded funds (ETFs) serve several functions in both good times and bad. These days, we’re seeing it primarily workingas a safe haven for investors. According to the World Gold Council’s (WGC) latest Gold Investment Digest (GID), the quarter Q2 2010 recorded significant net inflows into various gold backed investment vehicles, as investors sought to harness gold’s investment benefits at a time of weakness and pronounced volatility in other asset classes. Investors bought 273.8 net tonnes of gold via exchange traded funds (ETFs) in Q2 2010. This represents the second largest quarterly inflow on record with the total amount of gold held in the ETFs monitored by WGC to over 2,000 tonnes (worth US$81.6 billion).

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Till now India has been the biggest consumer of gold but gold exchange traded funds (ETFs) were not much popular in India. However, things are changing fast inIndia. With increasing popularity more and more people are now putting their money on Gold ETFs. As a sign of this, India’s gold collection under exchange-traded funds rose 76 per cent in June 2010 from a year ago to 10.453 tonnes. There has been an increase of customers by 70-80 per cent (on year). Most of the participation  was from high net worth individuals and other retail investors. The gold ETFs, instruments that trade like shares and are backed by physical gold holdings, are more than three year old and may get crowded with some other funds planning their entry.

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Over the past nine years, gold has managed to post successive increases in its annual average price, navigating the choppiest of waters.

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From the above mentioned chart it is clearly visible that gold ETF’s has given significant return on yearly basis.GOLDBEES does the best and it does quite well in volumes also, thatis due to the fact that its expenses are lower than the competitors. More competition is always good for the customer, but unless someone comes up with an ETF with expenses lower than GOLDBEES, we can imagine GOLDBEES to be the best on this chart.

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ETF have shown consistent growth in volumes both in terms of number of trade and turnover. Based on the underlying asset different types of ETFs have been identified. The turnover and price of each class of ETF listed on NSE is given below.

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Advantages of Investing in Gold ETFs

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•Potentially cheaper to have price exposure to gold price as compared to other available avenues.

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•Quick and convenient dealing through demat account.

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•No storage and security issue for investors.

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•Transparent pricing.

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•Taxation of Mutual Fund.

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•Can be traded on stock exchange like buying / selling a stock.

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•Ideal for retail investor as minimum lot size to trade is one unit on secondary market.

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•NAV of a unit tracks price of approximately ½ or 1 gram of gold.

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The above mentioned benefits make gold ETFs much better investment avenue for the investors rather than investing in gold through any other source. However as we are seeing that strong investment demand for gold is quite visible, with investors viewing gold, a real asset and as a hedge against medium-term inflationary pressures and potential US dollar weakness. While also providing important diversification benefits, investors may continue to look to gold as a safe haven asset and an alternative currency in the face of volatile currency markets in coming period. Also the rising awareness among Indian investor regarding investment through gold ETFs may boost the demand in near future.

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GLOBAL BOARD OF TRADE (GBOT)

Adding another trading floor in the whole list of numerous exchanges around the world, Global Board of Trade (GBOT) ”the first international multi-asset exchange”  based out of Mauritius, was officially launched by that country’s Prime Minister Navinchandra Ramgoolam.

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GBOT is a wholly owned subsidiary of Financial Technologies (INDIA) Limited, a leading provider of trading technology solutions and a global leader in creating and operating transparent, efficient, and liquid tech-centric exchanges transacting a broad spectrum of asset classes, including equities, commodities, fixed income, and foreign currency instruments. GBOT is also a member of leading industry associations such as Association of Futures Markets (AFM), Futures and Options Association (FOA), Swiss Futures and Options Association (SFOA), and Defra EU Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS).

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In the Hands of………..

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GBOT has a very strong board comprising reputed names such as Mr. Venkat Chary (Chairman), Mr. Jignesh Shah (Vice- Chairman), Mr. Mohammad A. Vayid (Director), Mr. V. Hariharan (Director) , Mr. Joseph Hadrian Bosco (Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer).

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Trade Timings

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It is proposed that the normal market trading hours on Global Board of Trade for Currency and Commodity Derivatives Segments will be 09:30 Hrs Mauritian Time (05:30 Hrs GMT) till 23:30 Hrs Mauritian time ( 19:30 Hrs GMT). Any decision about revision of the trading hours, as and when it happens, will be informed to the market participants via trading circulars.

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Value Propositions

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  • The strategic location of Mauritius (i.e. GMT +4) with respect to the rest of the world will enable the investing community to hedge price risk movements vis-à-vis the asian, Europenn and American markets.

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  • Trades will be in the form of standardized contracts and participants will be anonymous , thus ensuring the price discovery  process will be free from the influence of any vested interest or non-market forces.

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  • The commodity market segment of GBOT will enable sellers and buyers of commodities to protect their business from the adverse effects of price volatility in the terrestrial markets. The price risk management will be through the time-tested process of ‘hedging’.

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  • The advantage of a moderate tax regime prevailing in Mauritius will be of immense benefit to investors and traders alike.

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  • GBOT would offer commodity as well as currency derivative products on its state-of-the-art electronic exchange platform with efficient clearing and settlement systems to ensure counter-party guarantee for all trades.

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  • For the first time worldwide, two African currency futures will be traded.

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Products:

Bullions: Gold, Silver

Currencies: EUR/USD, GBD/USD, JPY/USD, USD/MUR, ZAR/USD

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Weekly Update 4th – 8th October 2010

Global markets closed on a mixed note in the week gone by, with Indian markets closing in positive on weekly basis. To send a message to China to raise value of its currency, the U.S. House of Representatives this week approved a bill that would let domestic companies petition for duties on imports from China to compensate for the effect of weak yuan. U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner said he is confident that tensions over China’s currency, the yuan, won’t lead to escalating trade sanctions or feed into a broader global currency conflict.

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European confidence in the economic outlook unexpectedly improved this month. An index of executive and consumer sentiment in the 16 euro nations rose to 103.2, the highest since January 2008, from a revised 102.3 in August. The European Commission forecasted a more “moderate” expansion in the second half of the year as governments from Ireland to Portugal step up spending cuts to push down deficits. ECB President Jean-Claude Trichet said that there is “continuing uncertainty” about the outlook.

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China’s manufacturing expanded at the fastest pace in four months in September. According to China’s logistics federation and statistics bureau, the purchasing managers’ index rose to 53.8 from 51.7 in August. The data is viewed very positively by the market as it shows that China’s economic momentum may counter weakness in the global recovery. It is believed that growth may be further aided in coming months as government plans to speed the completion of stimulus projects and boost public housing construction.

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In Japan, the jobless rate fell to 5.1 percent from 5.2 percent. After intervening few days back in the foreign exchange market in order to stem the yen appreciation, Japan’s Finance Minister reiterated that Japan is ready to keep intervening after selling yen for the first time in six years last month.

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Core infrastructure industry that account for 26.7 percent of industrial output in India slowed to 3.7 per cent in August, as compared to 6.4 per cent in the same month last year. Going forward we expect the markets would remain firm as it is supported by strong portfolio investments. The best strategy to ride the tide would be stay invested. Nifty has support between 5940-5870 and Sensex between 19640-
19200 levels.

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Bullions may continue to lead the charge in the commodities counter as both silver and gold recently tested life time highs in MCX. The latest boon to the metal has been increasing expectations that the Federal Reserve will further ease monetary policy with measures including the purchase of Treasuries. Jitters about European sovereign debt problems have also supported gold higher as a safe-haven investment. Better jobless claims data and a revised upward GDP in US supported the crude counter which can make further gains in next coming week. Base metals will take cues from LME as China markets will remain closed for a week. In agro counter pulses along with oilseeds may trade in range while spices can get some support from upcoming festive season. Mentha oil firm export demand and low crop will assist the prices to make fresh high in MCX.

INDIAN RUPEE “SOUL TO A NATION”

We can start exploring this world’s history, present & future by several understanding & discovering symbols. On this eve of Independence, where the whole country is celebrating the Sixty four year of Independence, let’s take a look of how the country’s pride “The Indian Rupee” was designed & came into existence. The Indian rupee (sign: `, code: INR) is the official currency of India. The issuance of the currency is controlled by the Reserve Bank of India.

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The Walkthrough

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On March 5, 2009 the Indian government announced a contest to create a symbol for the rupee. During the Union Budget 2010 Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee mentioned that proposed symbol would reflect and capture the Indian ethos and culture. Five symbols had been short listed, and the Cabinet selected the definitive symbol created by D Udaya Kumar on 15 July 2010. Kumar’s entry was chosen from 3,000 designs competing for the currency symbol.

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What does it depict?

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The symbol is a taken from the Devanagari ‘j’. It is a perfect blend of Indian and Roman letters — capital ‘R’ and Devanagri ‘Ra’. The parallel lines at the top (with white space between them) make an allusion to the tricolor Indian flag.

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Equality sign symbolizes the relativity of economy and balanced economy.

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Marked Existence

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With approval of new Indian rupee symbol, India has finally joined the privileged club of currencies, which currently has the US dollar, British pound sterling, Euro and Japanese yen. This makes India rupee the 5th currency in the world to have a clear distinguishing identity. The symbol will also be included in the Indian standard – Indian script Code for Information Interchange (ISCII).

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Adaptability

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Shiro Rekha (Uniqueness), Indian flag (Tri color), Harmonious with other currency symbols, Global and local appeal, Simplicity (High recall value), Familiar and easy to read, Easy to write & design, Easy to recollect and adapt , Blends with numerals, Balanced and Stable form, Unique & Dynamic design, Easy to implement.

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Meaning to a symbol is like Soul to a body. Psychologically, a symbol is an element of communication intended to represent repressed thoughts, feelings, or impulses & by which ideas are transmitted between people sharing a common culture. The symbol of Indian Rupee depicts one heart, one mind, one spirit, in tune with all elements. This symbol truly symbolizes our country, our tradition, our nation’s economy and its currency.

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Five designs that were short-listed by the jury and sent to the Cabinet for its approval. JAI HIND

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YUAN …. “KNEE-JERK REACTION”

The Chinese New Year has only just started, and already trade tensions are ratcheting up. The strength of China’s Yuan gave the world a confidence to end the peg & acted as a cushion for reviving from the fears of the global financial crisis, especially with European debt worries in the background.

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China’s yuan soared at 6.7980, its highest level against the US dollar since its July 2005 revaluation after the central bank signaled it would allow the yuan to continue its rise.

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REVALUATION OR REVOLUTION???

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The yuan policy change signaled that the Chinese economy “the world’s third-biggest economy” is on a more solid footing. China has been under intense global pressure, especially from the US, to introduce more flexibility between the yuan and the dollar to encourage the cash-rich Chinese to buy more from the heavily indebted West.

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Needless to say, a stronger yuan would allow China to lower the cost of its imports, particularly commodities.

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Even a small rise in the yuan could shave billions off the cost while raising the volume of China’s commodity purchases. China’s economy is still in a cycle towards overheating.

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China’s inflation accelerated in May to 3.1%, the quickest pace in 19 months, highlighting overheating risks in the fastest-growing major economy. Inflationary pressures may convince China to allow its currency to appreciate. A stronger yuan is in China’s interest to satisfy its appetite for resources.

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Yuan appreciation should benefit China’s importers of bulk commodities like soybeans, cotton, copper and various mining products including iron ore and other metal ores as these commodities, priced in the dollar, will be cheaper. The appreciation will support commodities prices in dollar terms in global markets as China will be able to accept higher prices in the dollar terms.

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Following is a list of some likely winners and losers from any yuan appreciation.

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WINNERS

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·Foreign resource companies – On hopes China’s move would increase its resource imports.

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·Foreign heavy machinery makers – The U.S. sells billions of dollars worth of machinery and products to China each year.

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·Foreign automakers – Foreign automakers that sell cars in the world’s largest vehicle market, should also gain.

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·U.S. companies such as General Electric Co and Procter & Gamble Co are likely to make currency exchange gains when their China profits are converted into U.S.dollars.

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·Chinese airlines – China’s three top carriers, Air China China Eastern Airlines and China Southern which borrow in foreign currencies to pay for aircraft, but generate reveyuan, could benefit the most. Airlines also use dollars to buy fuel.

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·Foreign luxury firms – A firmer yuan would likely boost other Asian currencies as a strong yuan is seen by investors as a pledge of confidence for Asia’s growth. That should help luxury goods makers, whose imported products will be cheaper across the region, just as more Asians benefit from increased wealth.

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LOSERS

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·Foreign retailers- Companies signed earlier memorandum of understanding for projects to build, would have to spend more in U.S. dollars to fund investments.

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·Chinese commodity firms – Companies with dollar-linked prices for their output, but their costs are in yuan, would find their revenues falling while their costs remain steady, if yuan strengthens.

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In a nut shell, China is not shying away from commodity consumption any time soon.They still have roads to pave, factories to build, and cities to expand. China is thinking ahead in terms of commodity demand. The shift toward a stronger exchange rate may give more purchasing power to its people. Chinese consumers might buy more while their counterparts in the U.S. may have to pay more & cut back on their spending as the cost of goods imported into America rises. This move is a net plus for the world economy.

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EQUITY MARKET OVERVIEW JANUARY 2010

EQUITY MARKET OVERVIEW JANUARY 2010

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The year 2009 was an unconventional year with surprises galore.

The sharp recovery in the benchmark Sensex is evident of the same.

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The year came with some shocks and some surprises, be it Satyam opening the Pandora’s Box, government coming to the rescue through fiscal stimulus or gold touching the new highs.


With appreciation of more than 75%, 2009 calendar year emerged as the best year bringing back hope and strengthening the faith and confidence of investors.

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As we welcome the New Year, let’s have a glance at how was the sunset of 2009 with the happenings in the month of December.


The month started with not much action as the indices were little changed as every rise was seen as an opportunity to book profits as fear of rising inflation barred investors from building large positions.

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The India’s industrial output jumped 11.7% in November 2009 from a year earlier, helped by stimulus measures and robust domestic demand.


The momentum in the country’s industrial output is likely to sustain in the coming months.


The facility for Indian companies to buy back their Foreign Currency Convertible Bonds (FCCBs) under the automatic route and approval route would be discontinued from January 2010 due to the improvement in the equity market.

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The central bank said it would allow non-bank financial companies which are focused on financing infrastructure projects to borrow from overseas markets under the approval route.


During the middle of the month, profit taking pulled the key benchmark indices lower.

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The worst monsoon since 1972 and flood in some parts of the country have pushed up food prices nearly to 17.28% annually in beginning of January, while the headline inflation accelerated to 7.31% in December.


The food supplies need to be boosted to stem the price rise as the current acceleration in inflation rate is not only due to loose monetary stance.


The government towards this, has cut the open sale price of wheat, while ministers have pledged to import food items that are in short supply to boost local supplies and stem inflation.

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Dollar also showed strength and sparked fears of unwinding of dollar carry trade.

The Christmas week saw a ‘Santa Claus’ rally that took the market to 19 months’ closing high in a truncated trading week.

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Further, the latest data showed that corporate advance tax payments for the October-December 2009 quarter shot up sharply, suggesting a higher profit growth in corporate sector in the third quarter (October-December) of the current fiscal.

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The corporate advance tax payments for the quarter were up 44% to Rs.48300 crore against a 3.7% decline in April-June quarter and a 14.7% increase in July-September quarter.


The company-wise break-up of advance tax collection suggests a broad-based recovery with automobiles, cement, metals and consumer goods, doing well.

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Amidst all this, we had the Finance Minister‘s statement that containing inflation and cutting fiscal deficit are the major challenges for the government in the short-to-medium term.


Towards this the government can even alter the proposed draft for the direct tax code to sustain the high economic growth.

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Global Market Outlook 2009 and 2010 :)

SMC Market Outlook

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With markets giving returns on investment more than 79% in 2009 and showing a strong sign of recovery from mid 2009 on the back of strong domestic demand, policy reforms and stimulus packages, 2009 calendar year emerged as the best year for investors since 2000.

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FII’s have once again proved to be the front runners in terms of the inflow, pumping more than Rs 82,000 crore in the Indian market this calendar.

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But 2010 promises to be another testing year as fiscal and monetary stimulus in many of the world’s major economies begins to wane.

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After being in consolidation for most of the month, in the week gone by the domestic markets suddenly jumped back to life and closed at their highest in 19 months as investors rushed to buy stocks on renewed optimism, after foreign direct investment into the nation jumped 60% in the first eight months of this fiscal year.

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The FM`s comments on GDP growth and encouraging cues from global markets also boosted the market.

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Both the indices, Sensex and Nifty made a new high for 2009 on the eve of Christmas, rekindling the festive spirit.

Bulls were in a mood of rejoice as Christmas took Nifty to a new high of 5,197.90.

The year ends with more than a spark of hope, and next year seems to be a stable and profitable one.

However, we believe that markets would continue to be volatile and hence it is important to manage risk in the coming year too.


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For the forthcoming week, markets may remain volatile as traders will roll their positions in the derivative segment from December 2009 series to January 2010 series ahead of the expiry of the near month December 2009 contracts on Thursday, 31 December 2009.

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On the flip side higher advance tax figures by India Inc which suggests better Q3 December 2009 results, may support the market.

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Corporate advance tax payments for the quarter were up 44% to Rs 48,300 crore against a 3.7% decline in April-June quarter and a 14.7% increase in July-September quarter.

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The global developments also need to be seen for any further directions.

Furthermore, food price index data for the year to 19 December 2009 will be closely watched which is going to release on Thursday, 31 December 2009.

The high food price inflation is a major worry for the policymakers as they contemplate a right approach to tame hike in inflation which seems to be more of a supply side issue.

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The next quarterly review of monetary policy is scheduled on 29 January 2010 which may also give some direction to the markets.

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On the global economic front, the US economy grew at a revised annual growth rate of 2.2% in the third quarter, much slower than initially projected.

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Japan’s unemployment rate rose to 5.2 percent from 5.1 percent in October, for the first time in four months in November, an indication job growth may not be strong enough to support the economy’s recovery from its deepest postwar recession.

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The world stock markets are not ready to react on the downside and after every consolidation they are moving up only.

4960 on nifty is strong support as was mentioned in last week magazine and the nifty touched there and moved up sharply.

Even the base metals and stocks are not reacting to the strong dollar.

Till the trend of stock markets is up, one should be playing from the long side of it.

Nifty has support between 5050-4970 and Sensex between 17100-16700 levels.

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New Year celebration may result in thin trading this week.It may impact domestic bourses as well.

Regarding outlook, dollar index will give next direction to precious metals. If it notices a pause in its rally then precious metals may trade in a range or vice a versa.

Base metals will remain volatile.

Gap between lead and zinc should shrink gradually.

Fresh buying in steel may keep nickel at higher side.

If US crude and other inventories continue to decline then fresh buying will stimulate in crude oil.

However, it already saw spiky moves hence upside is limited.

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