The BSE-Sensex is trading down 12 points and the NSE-Nifty is trading down 5 points. The BSE Mid Cap index is trading down 0.2% and the BSE Small Cap index is trading up 0.2%. The rupee is trading at 61.98 to the US dollar.
PSU banks are trading mixed today. While Bank of Maharashtra and Indian Bank are leading the gainers; Union bank, Central bank are among the stocks leading the losses. In a move to curb black money and counterfeiting, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has issued a circular stating that currency notes issued prior to 2005, would be withdrawn from 31st March 2014. Currency notes issued from 2005 onwards can be identified as they have the date of printing on them. All notes issued prior to 2005 do not have the printing date on them and such notes would have to be exchanged at bank branches. Also after from 1st July 2014, anyone looking to exchange more than 10 notes of Rs 500 or Rs 1,000 denomination would have to carry their identity and residence proof to the bank. The RBI has appealed to the public to cooperate and not to panic.
Telecom stocks are trading mixed today. Reliance Communication and Bharti Airtel are leading the pack of gainers, while Idea Cellular is trading in the red. As per a leading business daily, Bharti Airtel is expected to sell its Nigerian mobile tower business for sum of about US$ 500 m. The Nigerian market is the biggest revenue driver for the company in the African continent. It contributed to about 30% to the Bharti's entire African business during FY13. In total, the company had about 14,000 mobile towers in Africa across 17 countries by end of FY13. It may be noted in earlier development Bharti Airtel has also put its tower business in Bangladesh for sale where it has a networks of about 4,000 of towers. It expects to raise at least of US$ 200 m from this sale. These moves are part of the company's objective to raise about US$ 2 bn from selling of infra assets in order to strengthen its balance sheet. The company has a total of US$ 10 bn debt by the end of September 2013. The divestiture plan also coincides with the upcoming government spectrum auctions in February.