The major Asian stock markets have opened the day on a negative note with Japan (down 2.3%) and Indonesia (down 3.1%) leading the losses. The Indian share markets have opened the day on a weak note as well. All sectoral indices have opened in the red with the stocks in metal and banking space leading the losses. Since Argentina's withdrawal of support to the peso last week led to sharp devaluation of the currency, the Asian markets seem to be in turmoil. The other emerging market currencies, including the rupee, have followed suit.
The Sensex today is down by around 300 points (1.4%), while the NSE-Nifty is down by around 100 points (1.6%). Mid cap and small cap stocks have also opened in the red with the BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap indices down by around 1.9% and 1.6% respectively. The rupee is currently trading at Rs 62.79 to the US dollar.
Energy stocks have mainly opened the day in the red with Chennai Petroleum Corporation Ltd (CPCL) and Petronet LNG Ltd (PLNG) leading the losses. As per a leading financial daily, Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd (BPCL) plans to spend around Rs 130 bn on expansion of its Numaligarh refinery in Assam by 2017-18 to 9 million tonnes (MT). The current capacity of Numaligarh refinery stands at 3 MT. The management has said that the company will need tax concessions both from the central and the state governments to make the expansion economically viable. Already, Numaligarh refinery, that was designed to process locally available crude with low sulphur content from North Eastern oilfields, has been operating at less than its capacity due to falling crude oil output in the region. The new process units planned in the expansion will be capable of processing high sulphur imported crude oil. High sulphur crude being cheaper to the low sulphur oil is likely to positively impact the margins. BPCL further plans to raise capacity of its Bina refinery in Madhya Pradesh to 8 MT from current 6 MT by December 2016.
Indian Pharma stocks have mainly opened the day on a mixed note with Ranbaxy Laboratories Ltd and Dishman Pharma Ltd leading the losses. However, Glenmark Pharmaceuticals Ltd and Aurobindo Pharma Ltd were trading firm. Glenmark Pharmaceuticals Ltd has announced the results for the quarter ending December 2013 The revenue during the quarter grew by 15.9% year on year (YoY). The operating profit excluding out-licensing income was up by 34.8% YoY. The consolidated net profit for the quarter grew by 1.6%. As per the management, the net profit for the quarter is not comparable due to out-licensing income of Rs 49.30 crore received in Q3 December 2012. Segment wise, revenue from the Generics business rose 24.7% YoY. The Specialty Formulation business (excluding out-licensing revenue) was up by 16.6% YoY. The management has stated the performance has been good in both the businesses despite challenges in the operating environment. The management is reasonably confident of maintaining the growth and has stated that the emerging markets businesses will be a key growth driver in the future.