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Indian share markets open firm
Fri, 18 Jan 09:30 am

Barring Malaysia (down 0.2%), the major Asian stock markets have opened the day on a positive note with stock markets in Japan (up 2.6%) and Indonesia (up 1.0%) leading the pack of gainers. The Indian share market indices have also opened the day on a positive note. Stocks in the energy and PSU space are leading the gains. However, the stocks in the auto and technology sector are witnessing losses.

The Sensex today is up by around 115 points (0.6%), while the NSE-Nifty is up by around 31 points (0.5%). Mid and small cap stocks have opened in the green with the BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap indices up marginally by around 0.3% and 0.4% respectively. The rupee is trading at Rs 54.06 to the US dollar.

Telecom stocks have opened the day on a mixed note with Idea Cellular Ltd and Mahanagar Telecom Nigam Ltd (MTNL) leading the gains. However, Bharti Airtel is facing selling pressure. As per a leading financial daily, the country's top three GSM carriers - Bharti Airtel, Vodafone and Idea Cellular have jointly lost 5.17 million subscribers in the month of December 2012. The three together account for nearly 67% of the telecom sector's revenues. Of these, Bharti Airtel Ltd has lost about 1.70 million users in December. As such, the company's total customer base has declined to 181.91 million with a market share of 27.7%. Another leading telecom company, Idea Cellular has lost 0.20 million mobile subscribers in December. Following this, the company's total subscriber count stood at 113.95 million with a market share of 17.34%.

Auto stocks have opened the day on a weak note with Hero MotoCorp Ltd and Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd. leading the losses. The country's largest two wheeler manufacturer Hero MotoCorp Ltd has announced results for third quarter of the financial year FY13 (3QFY13). The company reported a 2.8% year on year (YoY) growth in the net sales. The sales volume for the quarter stood at 1.57 m, down marginally by 1% YoY. The net profits for the quarter were down by 20% YoY. This was mainly due to slowdown in the vehicle sales and higher expenses. The expenses went up mainly because of higher raw material costs, advertising costs and expenditure on brand building initiatives. As per the company management, the last two quarters have been challenging for the Indian automobile industry due to delayed monsoons, rising fuel prices and subdued sentiments.

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