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Indian Markets Tumble
Thu, 11 Feb 11:30 am

After opening the day in the red, the Indian indices lost further ground and continued to trade negatively. Sectoral indices are trading on a discouraging note with stocks from the metal and oil & gas sector witnessing maximum selling pressure.

The BSE Sensex is trading down 220 points (down 0.9%) and the NSE Nifty is trading down 69 points (down 1%). The BSE Mid Cap index is trading down by 1.1% and the BSE Small Cap index is trading down by 1.5%. The rupee is trading at 68.07 to the US$.

Oil & Gas stocks are trading on a negative note with Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) and Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL) witnessing maximum selling pressure. As per a leading financial daily, ONGC is aiming for new cheaper drilling contracts for its western offshore fields. This comes as a part of the company's biggest ever cost-saving drive in response to lower crude prices.

The company wants to end existing expensive contracts for drilling rigs signed in the FY 15 when crude prices averaged US$ 85 a barrel and to sign new ones at a lower price. If successful, this will help the company save Rs 5-10 billion a year.

ONGC's plan to slash costs, a final decision on which is still to be taken, would come about a year and half after crude prices first started to decline. The plan comes against the backdrop of overseas explorers lowering spending and scaling back drilling, which has forced rig contractors to idle or even scrap rigs, due to the prolonged slump in oil prices. Brent crude has plunged to trade just over US$ 30 a barrel. This, coupled with a sharp drop in commodity prices, has led to a fall in the cost of equipment used for oil and gas.

ONGC's average cost of production in the western offshore fields is about US$40 per barrel. As per the sources, with ONGCs additional investments in the near future, it expects the average cost of production at Mumbai High, the most productive field in the western offshore area, to go up to US$ 44-45 a barrel. Presently the stock of ONGC is trading down by 3.5%.

Most of the stocks in the automobile space are trading in the red with Maruti Suzuki and Mahindra & Mahindra leading the losses. As per a leading economic daily, Tata Motors Group, which includes Jaguar Land Rover (JLR), has reported a 16% YoY increase in its global wholesales at 93,355 units in January. Further, cumulative wholesales for this fiscal stood higher by 7% over the same period last fiscal.

Global wholesales of all Tata Motors' commercial vehicles and Tata Daewoo range during January stood at 36,739 units, higher by 20% YoY. Cumulative commercial vehicles wholesales for this fiscal were higher by 1%, over the last fiscal, at 310,224 units.

Global wholesales of all passenger vehicles in January 2016 were higher by 14% YoY at 56,616 units. Cumulative passenger vehicles wholesales for this fiscal, was higher by 11% at 5,37,437 units, over the last fiscal.

It was noted that nearly 80% of the volumes came from Jaguar Land Rover which sold 4,27,193 units. Tata Motors' passenger vehicles posted an increase of 2% to sell 1,10,244 units this fiscal.

We believe that new products and mid-cycle enhancements will further drive growth in the near to medium term in the passenger vehicle space of the company. As far as JLR is concerned, the company has lined up new product launches over the upcoming months, which include the Jaguar F-Pace, Evoque Convertible among others.

By the way, if you are interested in the automobiles sector, here's our recent analysis report update on the same.

Presently the scrip of the company is trading up by 1.1%.

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Mar 16, 2018 (Close)