Indian stocks are likely to be ranged on Monday while trends in SGX Nifty suggest a positive opening for the benchmark share indices. On Friday, the BSE Sensex ended at 37,388.66, up 835.06 points or 2.28% and the Nifty was at 11,050.25, up 244.70 points or 2.26%.

Asian shares were on the defensive, while oil prices edged lower in the early trade as investors were cautious ahead of a US Presidential debate and as coronavirus cases spike again in a blow to global economic recovery hopes.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan added 0.04% to 547.79, not too far from a two-month low of 543.66 hit last week. The index is set to end the month deep in the red after three straight monthly gains as the pandemic continues to wreak economic havoc around the world and raises investor anxiety about sky-high valuations.



Particularly worrying is a resurgence of covid-19 cases in Europe, dousing earlier hopes that authorities might have started to exert some control on the outbreak and raising further strains on businesses already grappling with losses.

Japan's Nikkei was 0.75% higher, partly on a lower yen, while South Korea's Kospi Index gained 0.8%.

Australia's main share index slipped 0.2% as investors were cautious despite positive news on the coronavirus front with new infections in the country's second-most populous state of Victoria down sharply and allowing authorities to ease some of the mobility restrictions.

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on Sunday approved the formation of a three-member committee of directors to temporarily run the struggling Lakshmi Vilas Bank Ltd after shareholders voted out seven directors, including managing director and chief executive S. Sundar. The panel will exercise the discretionary powers of the chief executive and will be headed by existing independent director Meeta Makhan, the bank said in a statement.

Vodafone Idea Ltd (Vi) will upgrade its existing 3G customers across all markets to 4G network in a phased manner to provide faster data speeds and services using Vi GIGAnet technology, the Birla group company said in a statement on Sunday. The announcement follows the company’s efforts to integrate the brands Vodafone India Ltd and Idea Cellular Ltd and consolidate their networks, two years after the merger in August 2018.

State-owned Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd (BPCL) has been forced to pay for its defaulting partner Videocon Industries Ltd after it had relied on a rarely used model to acquire stake in five oil blocks in Brazil, according to a media report.

Investor focus will next be on the first debate between US President Donald Trump and rival Joe Biden on Tuesday ahead of the November election.

A strong performance in Tuesday's debate by Biden, who currently has a modest lead in betting odds and polls, might boost stocks related to global trade and renewable energy, while a perceived victory by Trump could benefit fossil fuel and defense companies.

Market focus will also be on progress on a new fiscal support package in the United States while investors will also be closely watching UK-Europe post-Brexit trade talks as they continue this week.

In currencies, the dollar was hovering near a two-week high against the Japanese yen at 105.56. The euro was last at $1.1631, not far from a two-month trough of $.1611 touched on Friday.

The British pound rose 0.1% to $1.2760.

The risk sensitive Australian dollar held at $0.7041 after falling for six consecutive sessions as odds narrowed over the prospect of further monetary policy easing in the country.

In commodities, oil prices were under pressure as renewed mobility curbs in various countries to contain a resurgence of coronavirus cases cloud the outlook on fuel demand recovery. US Brent crude slipped 11 cents to $41.81 a barrel while US light crude CLc1 was down 20 cents at $40.05.

Gold held at $1,860.5, still some way off an all-time peak of above $2,000 an ounce touched in August.