The Nifty and the Sensex have opened the day on a flat note after consecutive days of bullish gains.Join us as we follow the top business news through the day.10:20 AMCities need a reset as pandemic exposed frailties: PM ModiThe pandemic has exposed the vulnerabilities of cities that served as the world’s growth engines till now, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Tuesday, calling for a post-COVID-19 change in protocols, similar in scale to the post-war rebuilding efforts, to develop more sustainable and resilient cities.“Many cities around the world declared themselves on the brink of the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression. The very things which represented living in a city, are facing a question mark. Things like community gatherings, sports activities, education and recreation are not the same as before. The biggest question before the entire world is how to restart,” Mr. Modi said, in an address to the Bloomberg New Economy Forum.Stressing that the restart would not be possible without a reset of mindsets, processes and practices, he said the historic reconstruction efforts after the two World Wars offered several lessons. “Post the World Wars, the entire world worked on a new world order, new protocols were developed and the world changed itself,” he said, adding that COVID-19 had provided a similar opportunity to develop new approaches in every field.
10:00 AMIndian shares flat as focus shifts to rising coronavirus casesA flat opening for the stock indices this morning after significant gains over the last few days.Reuters reports: “Indian shares were little changed on Wednesday after rising for two straight sessions, as surging global coronavirus cases stoked fears of a slower economic recovery and dampened optimism around vaccine trial results.The NSE Nifty 50 index was up 0.09% at 12,885.95 by 0355 GMT, while the S&P BSE Sensex rose 0.12% to 44,010.18. The Nifty 50, which gained 1.4% in the last two sessions, hit a record high on Tuesday.Shares in Lakshmi Vilas Bank fell 20% after India on Tuesday placed the troubled lender under a moratorium.Globally, equities stepped back after soft U.S. retail sales data and new coronavirus restrictions in several U.S. states dampened euphoria from vaccine trial breakthroughs.In India, New Delhi planned more curbs including lockdowns of some markets, as the capital city battles its worst phase in the pandemic, although new infections elsewhere in the country are falling.”9:30 AM‘Barely 1% may opt for RBI’s debt recast’Confirming a trend reported by commercial banks, a study by Crisil indicated that there would be few takers for the one-time COVID-19 debt restructuring offered by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to help stressed companies and lenders to tide over the crisis.Improving business sentiment and the ongoing, gradual recovery has minimised the need to avail of the facility, according to Crisil.It said about 99% of companies (excluding MSMEs) rated by it are unlikely to opt for the RBI’s one-time-debt-restructuring announced on August 6. This is as per a preliminary analysis of 3,523 such non-MSME companies.The RBI had, on August 6, 2020, announced the scheme as a relief measure for non-MSME corporate borrowers having an aggregate exposure of greater than Rs 25 crore and were under stress due to the COVID-19 pandemic.