Turning in a different script altogether, the indices went from strength to strength during the closing stages of the day today and closed the session strongly in the positive. The BSE-Sensex edged higher by around 270 points today whereas the NSE-Nifty closed with gains of around 84 points (up 1.6%). BSE Midcap and BSE Small cap indices were in even more buoyant mood, closing with gains of around 3% each. Advance to decline ratio on the BSE Sensex was certainly in favour of the former with there being three gainers for every one decline.
While Asian markets closed mixed today, markets in Europe are mostly in the red currently. The rupee was trading at Rs 45.7 to the dollar at the time of writing.
Steel stocks ended mostly higher today. Lead gainers were Adhunik Metalics, Tata Sponge and Bhushan Steel. As per a leading daily, the follow on public offering of domestic steel giant SAIL is likely to hit the markets in the month of March. The issue, all of Rs 80 bn was delayed due to market sentiments as well as a small controversy in the form of conflict of interest. The latter had to do with the fact that some merchant bankers who were on board for the SAIL FPO were also seen doing the Tata Steel FPO that hit the markets earlier this fiscal. However, the problems now seem to have been sorted out and hence, if all goes well, the issue may see the light of the day in the current fiscal as well. Success though is far from guaranteed given the manner in which investors seem to heading for the (exit from the stock markets) at the current juncture.
Apollo Tyres, one of India's largest tyre manufacturers ended with strong gains of 7% on the bourses today. This despite a poor set of results announced by the company. The company reported a 47% YoY drop in standalone net profits on the back of an 8% growth in topline. Its operating margins plummeted to 10.4% during the quarter, in sharp contrast to more than 15% during the same quarter last year. More than doubling of the interest expenses and strong growth in depreciation charges further hurt profitability, leading to a 47% decline in profits.