The major Asian stock markets have opened the day on a negative note with China market (down 1.2%) and Indonesia market (down 0.5%), leading the losers. The Indian markets have also opened weak. Among the sectoral indices, stocks from banking and metal are witnessing maximum selling pressures.
BSE-Sensex currently trading lower by about 129 points (down 0.44%), while the NSE-Nifty is lower by about 23 points (down 0.38%). The BSE Mid Cap have opened the day in green, up by 0.23% along with BSE Small Cap which have opened firm, and are up by 0.35%. The rupee was trading at Rs 61.93 to the dollar.
Majority of the energy stocks are trading firm with Chennai Petroleum and Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd (BPCL) being the major gainers. As per a leading financial daily, the price of aviation turbine fuel (ATF) has been pared by a sharp 11.3%. This is the second steep cut in ATF prices after 1st January when the price was slashed by 12.5%. After the second revision, ATF is priced at Rs 46.51 per litre and has reportedly become cheaper than diesel that is priced at Rs 51.52 per litre. ATF attracts an excise duty of 8% and this is the seventh reduction in its price since August. Even the price of market priced LPG has been revised downwards from Rs 708.5 to Rs 605 and is the seventh cut since August. The state owned retailers Indian Oil Corporation (IOC), Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd (BPCL) and Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL) revise jet fuel and non-subsidized LPG prices on the 1st of every month.
Most of the public sector banks are trading in the green with Andhra Bank and Punjab National Bank being the major gainers. As per a leading financial daily, the government may prod state-run banks to arise Tier II capital through the sale of bonds to the public. This move is aimed at deepening the corporate bond market through increased retail participation. Currently banks use the qualified institutional placements (QIP) route to raise Tier II capital that are easier but do not have retail participation. Tier II capital consists of certain reserves and subordinated debt and is lower than Tier I capital that largely comprises of equity and accumulated losses. As per RBI estimates, public and private banks together require additional capital of Rs 5 trillion to comply with Basel III norms out of which Rs 1.75 trillion would be equity.