Indian markets may be on a tear, but investment bank Nomura says growth concerns, consumer sentiment and rising inflation could still weigh on stocks.
"Macro uncertainty is actually a concern for the markets," Saion Mukherjee, the bank's head of equity research in India, said Wednesday during a virtual session at the Nomura Investment Forum Asia 2021.
Indian stocks have surged this year despite the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic, which knocked the country off its growth trajectory last year.
The benchmark Nifty 50 index, which represents the weighted average of 50 of the largest Indian companies on the National Stock Exchange, is up 11% year to date as of Wednesday. On the other hand, India's GDP for the fiscal year that ended on March 31 is estimated to have contracted 7.3% compared with 4% growth in the 12 months prior.
"I think that there is no strong correlation between GDP growth and earnings growth, at least in the short term," Mukherjee said.
Microeconomic factors such as corporate earnings are looking "relatively better" at this point, he said. Mukherjee added there is enough cushion for corporate earnings, which tapered a little due to the pandemic, to come back strongly. Nomura predicted that banks and metals stocks will drive earnings on the Nifty.
Mukherjee shared how the investment bank is navigating this environment. Here are Nomura's top stock picks and sector calls: