Indian benchmark indices, the BSE Sensex and the NSE Nifty, are set to continue the rally on Wednesday as global markets bounced back and investors recovered their appetite for riskier assets. The trends on SGX Nifty also indicated a positive opening for the Indian equities.

On Tuesday, Indian benchmark indices Sensex and Nifty snapped a two-session losing streak and closed higher, led by gains in index heavyweights such as Reliance Industries, TCS, Infosys, HCL Technologies, Wipro, Tata Steel, and Tech Mahindra. The market witnessed broad-based buying, led by IT and metal space, amid firm global cues and bargain hunting by investors following the recent slump. The BSE Sensex ended 497 points, or 0.89%, higher at 56,319, and the NSE Nifty closed at 16,786, up by 172 points or 1.04%. The broader indices outperformed the Large-Cap peers, with the S&P BSE Mid-Cap index rising 1.4% while the S&P BSE Small-Cap index added 1.3%.

Individual stocks that will be in focus on Wednesday include YES Bank, Metro Brands, SBI, HCL Tech, Indian Oil, JSW Energy, and others.

YES Bank: Shares of the private sector lender will be in focus as its board approved the fundraising proposal to support business growth. The bank plans to raise funds up to ₹10,000 crore through various instruments, including equity and bonds.

Metro Brands: Shares of Mumbai-based footwear retailer will commence trading on the bourses today. The company has raised ₹1,367.5 crore through public issue of 2.73 crore equity shares at ₹500 per share. Despite being backed by ace investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala, the IPO garnered lower-than-expected support from investors as the offer was subscribed just 3.64 times.

SBI: State Bank of India, the country’s largest lender, has acquired a minority stake in Sajjan Jindal-led JSW Cement by investing ₹100 crore through compulsorily convertible preference shares (CCPS).

HCL Technologies: The IT company has inked a five-year agreement with CEMEX, a global construction materials company, to deliver the next generation of employee services enabled by digital transformation. HCL will also collaborate with NEORIS, a CEMEX subsidiary, to create a superior customer experience and achieve sustainable resiliency in CEMEX’s supply chain.

Indian Oil Corporation: The state-owned oil company has acquired a nearly 5% stake in Indian Gas Exchange Ltd - the country's first automated national level exchange for the trading of natural gas.

In a separate development, 3 people have been reportedly killed in a major fire accident at the company’s Haldia refinery on Tuesday.

JSW Energy: The company said in an exchange filing that its subsidiary JSW Energy (Barmer) has completed the buy-back of its shares worth ₹1,000 crore.

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

Global stocks rebound amid bargain hunting

Global markets rebounded strongly in overnight trade as fresh development related to the omicron variant of COVID-19 lifted sentiment. All the main European indices ended with more than 1% gain, while the U.S. equities also closed the session with similar gains. The market sentiment was lifted after South Africa reported a drop in daily cases to the lowest in two weeks, while in the UK, Prime Minister Boris Johnson ruled out tighter pandemic curbs ahead of Christmas.

On Wall Street, all three major indices recovered from Monday’s sell-off amid bargain hunting as investors bought the dip. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 1.6%, the S&P 500 rose 1.8%, and the NASDAQ Composite surged 2.4%. The market rally was driven by energy stocks, while report that the US Food and Drug Administration was set to authorise Pfizer and Merck’s pills to treat coronavirus soon also added optimism to the market. The market sentiment was also boosted by reports that Moderna COVID-19 vaccine protects against the new variant.

Asian markets extend gain on firm global cues

Shares in the Asia-Pacific region continued gaining streak for the second straight session, following firm cues from Wall Street which finished higher overnight. Earlier this week, global equities were rattled after Omicron infections increased around the world, but renewed optimism that the economic hit would not be as severe this time gave investors hope on Wednesday.

Asian shares traded marginally higher as investors remained cautious about the rapid spread of the Omicron variant in the region.

The Hang Seng index in Hong Kong was the best performer in the region with a 0.7% gain, followed by Indonesia’s Jakarta Composite, which rose 0.5%. Thailand’s Set Composite index traded higher by 0.4%, while the Australian benchmark index, ASX 200, climbed 0.2%.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 traded higher by marginal gains, while South Korea’s Kospi rose 0.2%. The Straits Times Index in Singapore was also up 0.2%, while China’s Shanghai Composite gained 0.1%.

Oil prices settle higher

Crude oil prices settled higher for the second day amid renewed risk appetite as Omicron fear eases. Positive news on the Covid-19 front helped renew confidence about the economy, even though investors remained concerned about the impact of the Omicron coronavirus variant on the global economic recovery.

The U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) Crude oil futures for February were up 0.66% at $71.59 a barrel, while Brent oil futures were at $74.38, up 0.47%.

In the overnight trade, Brent crude settled 3.4% higher, and WTI crude surged 3.7% amid easing concerns that the spread of Omicron would dampen fuel demand.

Gold prices fall on low demand

Gold prices dropped marginally during Wednesday’s Asian session as speculators reduced their positions amid low demand. Spot gold traded flat at $1,789 per ounce in futures trade. The rebound in global equities also prompted investors to shift focus from safe haven to riskier assets.

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