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Indian Markets Skid Southwards
Tue, 16 Feb 11:30 am

After opening the day on a positive note, the Indian Markets have failed to maintain their momentum and are presently trading on a negative note. Sectoral indices are trading mainly in the red with stocks from the healthcare, and capital goods sectors leading the losses.

The BSE Sensex is trading down 122 points (0.5%) and the NSE Nifty is trading down 36 points (0.5%). The BSE Mid Cap index is trading down by 1.3% while the BSE Small Cap index is trading down 0.5%. The rupee is trading at 68.31 to the US$.

Stocks in the automobile space are trading on a mixed note with Maharashtra Scooters and Hero MotoCorp leading the gains. As per a leading financial daily, Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) is planning to invest Rs 80 billion in its automotive plants in Maharashtra over the next seven years as part of its expansion plans. The investment for this will be utilized towards infrastructure development, product development and capacity expansion for vehicles.

For the aforesaid plan, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between the company and the state government.

The company presently has four automotive plants in Maharashtra at Chakan (Pune), Nashik, Kandivali and Igatpuri. Besides these, it has two other automotive plants outside Maharashtra at Zaheerabad (Telangana) and Haridwar (Uttarakhand).

It should be noted that the company for the month of January posted a good set of numbers with volumes increasing by 13%. The growth was led by the increasing sales from TUV300 and the recently launched KUV100. The company posted a double digit growth inspite of facing a recent setback from Supreme Court's decision to ban diesel vehicles above 2000cc capacity.

On a separate note, the company has recently completed sale of its entire 71.19% stake in Swaraj Automobiles (SAL) for Rs 248 million to b4S Solution. The development comes as the company during the last year had entered into an agreement with b4S Solutions for the sale of its entire stake in SAL. Under the agreement, the company had fixed the price at Rs 145.5 per equity share. The company had acquired stake in SAL through open offer when it bought 43.3% in Punjab Tractors, which held shares in the company.

Presently the stock of M&M is trading down by 0.6%.

Stocks in the mining space are trading on a mixed note with Vedanta and Coal India leading the leading the losses. As per an article in Economic Times, the Coal Ministry is likely to come out with the approach paper for formulating a detailed policy on commercial coal mining by March this year. For the success of commercial mining of coal, the government had taken an initiative in legislating Coal Mines (Special Provisions) Act, 2015 and consequently adding a new Section 3A of the Coal Mines (Nationalisation) Act, 1973, along with amending Section 11A of the Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Act, 1957.

Joint Secretary, Ministry of Coal, Vivek Bharadwaj stated that along with the amendments, the ministry is also looking to provide a supportive policy environment for commercial mining. For this, two weeks will be given for the stakeholders to respond once the approach paper is out. Tender documents will be issued post this exercise.

One shall note that the Coal Mines (Special Provisions) Act, 2015 permits private coal mining companies to sell coal in the open market. Earlier, private companies were allowed to utilize allocated coal mines only for their own industries. So far, the government has auctioned 31 coal mines and alloted 43 coal mines to the central and state government companies.

It is believed that commercial mining will lift the domestic production of coal to meet the growing demand of the economy. Moreover, it will reduce India's dependence on coal imports.

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Jan 19, 2018 (Close)