Asian stock markets have opened the day on a firm note with stock markets in Japan (up 0.2%) trading in the green. Most of the other major Asian markets are closed today. The Indian stock markets have opened the day on a firm note. Stocks in the power and banking space are leading the gains.
The BSE-Sensex is trading marginally higher by 11 points (0.1%), while the NSE-Nifty is marginally up by around 4 points (0.1%). Mid cap and small cap stocks are also trading in the green with the BSE Mid cap and BSE Small cap indices up by 0.6% and 0.4% respectively. The rupee is trading at 50.37 to the US dollar.
Power stocks have opened on a firm note with National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) and Tata Power leading the gains. NTPC, the country's largest power producer is planning to expand further in a big way. The current capacity of the company stands at 36,000 megawatts (MW). It is planning up another mega power project along with the 4,000-MW Kudgi project in Karnataka, South India. This will be in the 12th Plan itself instead of the 13th plan. The current operating capacity in South India stands at 4,450 MW. The company is already expanding near Visakhapatnam & Ramagundam in Andhra Pradesh, Kudgi in Karnataka and Kayamkulam in Kerala. To add to this, the company will set up one more plant of 4,000 MW at Pudimadaka, close to Visakhapatnam. The management has said that the Andhra Pradesh Government is keen that NTPC should take up one more mega project near Visakhapatnam. And due to the keenness shown by the state, instead of considering the power project in 13th plan, NTPC has included the same in the current 12th plan.
Cement stock have opened the day on a mixed note with UltraTech Cement and Heidelberg Cement leading the gains. UltraTech Cement has announced its results for the quarter ended December 2011 (3QFY12). During the quarter, the company has reported a rise of 23.1% year-on-year (YoY) in net sales Rs 37.1 bn in 3QFY11 to Rs 45.7 bn in 3QFY12. Operating profit margin improved from 19.1% in 3QFY11 to 21.1% in 3QFY12. Other income was higher by 156.4% YoY during the period. On the other hand, interest expense declined by 63.9% YoY. As a result, net profit during the quarter surged by 93.4% YoY. Net margins improved from 8.6% in 3QFY11 to 13.5% in 3QFY12.