Indian stock markets traded positively during the last two hours of trade on the back of sustained buying in the index heavyweights. Barring IT stocks, all sectoral indices are trading firm.
The BSE-Sensex is trading up by 176 points and NSE-Nifty is trading strong by 54 points. BSE Mid cap and BSE Small cap indices are trading strong by 1.2% and 1.1% respectively. The rupee is trading at 50.31 to the US dollar.
Telecom stocks are trading weak led by Idea Cellular and Bharti Airtel. According to a leading financial daily, Bharti Airtel, the country's largest mobile services provider by subscribers, faces an income tax demand of Rs 10.67 bn on its overseas operations. According to the income tax department, the company failed to deduct tax at source. The company has however denied such charges and opines that the demand notice, pertaining to applicability of withholding tax on payments made to international operators, is not justified. The company also intends to appeal against the income tax order.
Auto stocks are trading strong led by Ashok Leyland and Hero Motocorp. According to a leading financial daily, Fiat and Suzuki Motor Corporation have gotten into an agreement to supply 1 lakh diesel engines to Maruti Suzuki. The agreement is to supply Fiat's 1.3 litre multijet engine that is licensed by Fiat Indian Automobile. Fiat India Automobile is a joint venture between Fiat and Tata Motors (Telco). The engines will be supplied for 3 years starting this January. This development is expected to benefit Maruti. The car company will be able to service the queued demand for its Swift model. It is in the process of increasing the production of its diesel cars.