Most Asian stock markets have opened the day on a firm note with stock markets in Japan (up 1%), Singapore (up 0.8%), South Korea (up 0.5%) and Indonesia (up 0.5%) trading firm. However, markets in China (down 1.8%) and Hong Kong (down 0.1%) are facing selling pressure. The Indian stock markets have opened the day on a firm note as qwell. Stocks in the metal and power space are leading the gains.
The BSE-Sensex is trading higher by 96 points (0.6%), while the NSE-Nifty is up by around 28 points (0.6%). Mid cap and small cap stocks are also trading in the green with the BSE Mid cap and BSE Small cap indices up by 1% each. The rupee is trading at 52.72 to the US dollar.
Auto stocks have opened the day on a mixed note with Ashok Leyland and Tata Motors (Telco) trading in the green. However, Hero MotoCorp and Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd. (M&M) are trading in the red. Maruti Suzuki's car models in the economy segment like the Maruti 800 and Alto have been India's best selling cars till date. The passenger car manufacturer is now working on a replacement for the 800cc cars. Though the new models will have an 800cc engine, the design will be more contemporary and the engine will have higher fuel efficiency. It will take about 2 years to launch the new models. Maruti will incur a capex of Rs 5.5 bn for this model change.
Mining stocks have opened the day on a firm note with Coal India, Manganse Ore India Limited (MOIL Limited) and Sesa Goa Ltd leading the gains. The consumers of coal have strongly opposed the new pricing system by Coal India. The new pricing system seems to be increasing the cost of coal drastically for everyone. Fuel costs for steel companies will be higher by up to 70% while some cement companies may face a shutdown now. Power companies will also have to increase the tariffs by 40% in order to mitigate the impact of coal price increase. Coal India began its new pricing method from the start of the year based on gross calorific value or heat produced by burning it. Prior to this, the pricing was fixed based on the moisture and ash content present in coal. Consumers have alleged that Coal India is misusing its monopolistic power. However, Coal India defended saying that this is a global method and will improve the quality of coal.