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Smaller indices see a freefall
Thu, 24 Jan Closing

The Indian stock markets started the day on a positive note, but this positive momentum did not last for long. Indices immediately moved their way downwards and remained below par for the rest of today's session. Towards the closing, the indices came off the day's lows, however still continued in the negative. The BSE-Sensex closed negative, lower by around 103 points (0.5%). The NSE-Nifty closed lower by around 35 points (down 0.5%). The smaller indices had a much worse day on the bourses. The BSE Mid Cap index and the BSE Small Cap 2.5% and 2.4% lower respectively. Most sectoral indices closed in the red today with realty stocks leading the losses with Housing Development & Infrastructure Ltd, IVRCL and Unitech seeing huge losses. Auto indeces also saw declines. On the other hand FMCG and IT stocks closed positive.

As regards global markets, Asian indices had a mixed outing today. European indices also opened the day on a mixed note. The rupee was trading at Rs 53.74 to the dollar at the time of writing.

In an attempt to bring down the current account deficit, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) hiked foreign institutional investor (FII) investment limits in government securities and corporate bonds by US$ 5 bn each, taking the total cap in domestic debt to US$ 75 bn. Plus, in an attempt to further liberalise the norms, the 3-year lock-in period for FIIs purchasing government securities (G-Secs) for the first time has been done away with.

Supreme Industries declared the results for the second quarter of financial year 2012-2013 (2QFY13). The company's financial year ends in June. It reported 5.9% YoY growth in sales during the quarter, and this increased by 12.7% YoY during the half year period. Growth in operating expenditure exceeded the growth in sales and resultantly operating profits declined marginally by 0.8% YoY during the quarter. Operating profit margins shrank by 1%. Supreme Industries did not report any other income during the quarter and interest costs continued to decline (down by 2.5% YoY) in this quarter too. Net profits were higher by 11.9% YoY with net profit margins hovering around 8%, slightly up from previous quarter's 7.7% The Board of Directors also recommended an interim dividend of Rs 2 per share. The stock closed 2.8% higher in trade today.

Larsen & Toubro (L&T) announced the third quarter results of financial year 2012-2013 (3QFY13) and put up a good showing. Standalone net sales grew by 10.2% YoY during 3QFY13. Revenue growth was driven by 10.8% YoY growth in the Engineering & Construction (E&C) business. Operating profits increased 9.8% YoY in 3QFY13. However, operating margins remained flat at 9.6% during the quarter. Net profits increase by 13.1% YoY during the quarter. Strong performance at the operating level and increase in other income by 18.2% YoY boosted bottomline growth. L&T registered an order inflow of Rs 195.4 bn during the quarter, a growth of 14% YoY. The total order book at the end of the quarter stood at Rs 1,623.3 bn. Plus, the Company allotted 1.1 m equity shares during the quarter on account of exercise of stock options by its employees. The stock closed 1.6% higher in trade today.

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Feb 21, 2018 09:49 AM