The BSE Sensex and the NSE Nifty are set to open on a flat note on Friday, tracking mixed cues from global peers as investors turned jittery ahead of the August U.S. nonfarm payroll report slated to be released tonight. The improvement in U.S. job data could further strengthen the case for an aggressive rate hike by the U.S. Federal Reserve. The flat trends on SGX Nifty also indicated a muted opening for the domestic bourses, with SGX Nifty futures trading near baseline at 17,570 levels on the Singapore Stock Exchange at 8:20 AM. Investors will also react to Goods and Services Tax (GST) collection data, which came post market hours on Thursday. The GST collections rose 28% to ₹1.44 lakh crore in August as compared to the same period last year. However, the August GST revenue mop-up dropped 4% as compared to the collection in July.

On Thursday, the Indian equities ended lower, following weak cues from global peers, as rate hike concerns spooked investors’ sentiments. The S&P BSE Sensex fell 770 points, or 1.29%, to settle at 58,767, and the NSE Nifty index tumbled 216 points, or 1.22%, to 17,543 levels. The top losers on the Sensex pack were Reliance (2.99%), TCS (2.49%), Sun Pharma (2.42%), Tech Mahindra (2.15%), HUL (1.99%), and NTPC (1.98%). On the other hand, Bajaj Finserv, Asian Paints, Bharti Airtel, Titan, State Bank of India, Mahindra & Mahindra, and IndusInd Bank were notable gainers. Bucking the trend, broader markets ended in the green zone, with midcap and smallcap indices gaining 0.57% and 0.48%, respectively. On the sectoral front, oil and gas and IT space declined the most, while realty and capital goods stock were top performers.

Stocks to watch

Adani Enterprises, Shree Cement: Shares of these two companies will be in focus as the National Stock Exchange of India (NSE) has announced that Adani Enterprises would be included in the Nifty 50 index, replacing Shree Cement, from September 30.

Infosys: The IT major has completed the acquisition of Europe-based life sciences consulting and technology firm BASE life science.

NDTV: Adani Group has rejected RRPR Holding's, the promoter entity of NDTV, contention that it would need the Income Tax department's approval to convert warrants into equity shares to Vishvapradhan Commercial (VCPL), its indirect subsidiary.

Aurobindo Pharma: The drug maker has said its wholly-owned arm, CuraTeQ Biologics, plans to invest around ₹300 crore on capacity expansion of biologics manufacturing facilities.

Hero MotoCorp: The country’s largest two-wheeler manufacturer on Thursday reported a 1.92% rise in total sales at 4,62,608 units in August 2022, compared with 4,53,879 units in the year-ago period. The domestic sales jumped 4.55% to 4,50,740 units as compared to 4,31,137 units in August 2021.

UPL Corporation: Agriculture solutions provider has promoted Mike Frank as the chief executive officer (CEO) of the company. Frank will also be a member of the UPL Crop Protection Board of Directors.

Zee Entertainment Enterprises: The company has written to the Competition Commission of India (CCI) to approve the merger of its operations with Sony Entertainment.

NTPC: The state-owned power generating company has received bids from a dozen companies for stake in its green energy arm. The company is looking to sell a minority stake in its green energy business to raise up to ₹2,000 crore.

TVS Motor: The two and three wheeler maker has reported a 15% growth in its sales by selling 3,33,787 units in August, as against 2,90,694 units in the same month of last year.

Orient Cement: Soumitra Bhattacharyya has resigned as Chief Financial Officer of the company, effective from close of business hours of September 2.

Birla Corporation: The company has permanently shut down its manufacturing unit, Auto Trim division, in Gurgaon.

Here are the key things investors should know before the market opens today:

Wall Street ends higher in choppy trade

In the overnight trade, the U.S. indices ended mostly higher in a volatile session, snapping four-session session losing streak, even as commodities dropped and positive economic data indicated that the Federal Reserve will stick to its aggressive rate hike plans. The market witnessed some recovery after days of losses after Fed chairman Jerome Powell on Friday said that the central bank would raise rates as high as necessary to tame inflation, raising fresh concerns about the tight monetary conditions. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.5%, the S&P 500 added 0.3%, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite ended 0.3% lower, extending the losing streak for the fifth session.

Asian shares mixed

Shares in the Asia-Pacific region were trading mixed in opening trade on Friday, after Wall Street snapped its losing streak, while caution prevailed ahead of U.S. jobs data that may bolster the case for another sharp rate hike by the Federal Reserve.

Regional heavyweight Japan’s Nikkei 225 was down 0.2%, while South Korea’s Kospi rose 0.25%. The Hang Seng index in Hong Kong was the worst performer in the region with a 0.9% loss, followed by Taiwan Weighted index, which dropped 0.5%.

Meanwhile, Singapore’s Straits Times fell 0.45% while Indonesia’s Jakarta Composite jumped 0.6%. The ASX 200 index in Australia was also trading marginally higher.

Markets in mainland China were also trading marginally higher, with the Shanghai Composite and the Shenzhen Component rising by 0.1% each.

FIIs turn net sellers, DIIs net buyers

The foreign institutional investors (FIIs) turned net sellers in the Indian equity market on September 1, while domestic institutional investors (DIIs) emerged as net buyers. As per the exchange data, FIIs net sold shares worth ₹2,290.31 crore, while DIIs net purchased stocks worth ₹951.13 crore.

Crude prices climb 1%

Brent and U.S. crude prices rose over 1% on Friday amid hope that OPEC+ ((Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries) will discuss output cuts at its meeting on September 5. In the overnight trade, oil prices fell over 3% on concerns about fall in global fuel demand amid a slowdown in the global economy weighed on market sentiments. The fresh Covid-19 restrictions in China, one of the largest consumers of oil in the world, raised worries about fuel demand.

In early Asian trading hours on Friday, the Brent oil for November delivery was up 1.2% at $93.47 per barrel, while the U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude October futures rose 1.35% to $87.78 a barrel.

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