The Sensex today is up by around 30 points (0.1%), while the NSE-Nifty is up by around 8 points (0.1%). Mid and small cap stocks are also trading in the green with the BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap indices up by around 0.3% and 0.5% respectively. The rupee is currently trading at Rs 61.80 to the US dollar.
PSU Bank stocks have opened the day on a firm note with Central Bank of India, Punjab National Bank (PNB) and IDBI Bank leading the gains. As per a leading financial daily, leading public sector lender State Bank of India (SBI) has been granted approval by shareholders for raising up to Rs 115 bn via qualified institutional placement (QIP) or public offer. The dilution of the government shareholding will be to the extent of the level approved by the board. Pursuant to the QIP, the government's shareholding in the bank will not decline below 58%. Currently, the government shareholding in SBI stands at 62.31%.
In addition, a preferential issue of equity shares of Rs 10 each to the government up to Rs 20 bn has also been approved. SBI has fixed an issue price of Rs 1,782.74 per share for a preferential stock allotment to the government. It must be noted that this preferential issue is part of the capital infusion plan for the fiscal year 2013-14. These additional funds will help SBI to support domestic and overseas banking operations undertaken through its subsidiaries and associates.
Indian Pharma stocks have opened the day on a firm note with Elder Pharma, J B Chemicals and Dishman Pharma leading the pack of gainers. As per a leading financial daily, Indian pharma firm Glenmark Pharmaceuticals Ltd has been slapped with a patent infringement case by US-based Cephalon Inc over plans to sell generic version Treanda, a drug used for the treatment of leukaemia in the US market. Glenmark Pharmaceuticals Ltd and Glenmark Generics Inc, USA have confirmed that Cephalon Inc has filed a patent infringement suit on 26 Dec 2013 in the US District Court for the District of Delaware seeking to prevent Glenmark from commercialising its Abbreviated New Drug Application (ANDA) for Bendamustine Hydrochloride product. The complaint has been filed against Glenmark trying to commercialise the product before the expiry of patent which is a generic version of Treanda. It must be noted that Bendamustine is indicated for the treatment of patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia. This is a Para IV filing made by Glenmark and suit filed by Cephalon is part of the Para IV filing process.