In this State of the Economy podcast, bl.portfolio Editor Parvatha Vardhini C, talks to Aashish Somaiyaa, CEO of WhiteOak Capital AMC on the current market dynamics and the post - election outlook.

The discussion looks at the market’s recent performance influenced by election related volatility as well as record highs. Aashish highlights that market engagement is often driven by anticipation, saying, “It’s always interesting or exciting when there is something to look forward to. That keeps the market engaged and keeps it going.”

About the recent market rally, “My sense is that from February-March 2024 onwards, the market has become a little more discerning, with a tilt towards good governance and quality. But before that, everything was just going up unilaterally,” he explains.

Emphasising the importance of stock selection, Aashish notes that the market’s discerning nature means that not all sectors or stocks are performing uniformly. He points out the shift in market dynamics.

Ashish discusses the performance of hot sectors like defence, PSUs, real estate, and autos, likening market behaviour to a pendulum swinging between extremes. He finds more margin of safety in private banks now, he says.

The podcast also looks at the Q4 earnings season, with Aashish observing sustained positive trajectories and no significant slowdowns. He predicts that financial, manufacturing, and industrial sectors will drive growth in FY25, despite external economic headwinds.

On consumption, Aashish comments on the K-shaped recovery post-COVID, where urban and discretionary spending have seen more traction. “ Unfortunately, we haven’t seen a turnaround in rural demand yet,” he notes, suggesting that broader economic stimuli are necessary for inclusive growth.

Talking on both gold and equities touching new highs at around the same time, Aashish critiques the industry’s skew towards equities in multi-asset funds, which often undermines the intended diversification.

Listen in!

(Host: Parvatha Vardhini C, Producers: Amitha Rajkumar, Siddharth Mathew Cherian)

About the State of the Economy podcast 

India’s economy has been hailed as a bright spot amid the general gloom that seems to have enveloped the rest of the world. But several sectors continue to stutter even as others seem set to fire on all cylinders. To help you make sense of the bundle of contradictions that the country is, businessline brings you podcasts with experts ranging from finance and marketing to technology and start-ups.