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Sensex Opens Down; Automobiles and Energy Stocks Lose
Mon, 17 Feb 09:30 am | Rini Mehta, TM Team

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Asian stock markets are higher today as Chinese and Hong Kong shares show gains. The Shanghai Composite is up 1.2% while the Hang Seng is up 0.5%. The Nikkei 225 is trading down by 0.8%.

Back home, India share markets opened marginally lower. The BSE Sensex is trading down by 69 points while the NSE Nifty is trading down by 25 points. The BSE Mid Cap index opened up by 0.5% while BSE Small Cap index opened up by 0.4%.

Sectoral indices have opened the day on a mixed note with IT stocks and consumer durables stocks witnessing buying interest. Oil & gas and automobiles stocks are trading in the red.

Speaking of the Indian share markets, note that Indian indices have witnessed a starkly polarised situation since 2018, after the uninterrupted bull rally of 2017 entered a period of correction.

The rupee is currently trading at 71.41 against theĀ US$.

In the news from the economy. The country's exports dropped 1.7% to US$26 billion in January, the sixth straight month of contraction, on account of a significant fall in shipments of petroleum, plastic, carpet, gems and jewellery, and leather products.

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According to the government data released, imports also fell for the eighth consecutive months, down 0.8% to US$41.1 billion in January, widening the trade deficit to a seven-month high of US$15.2 billion.

Gold imports shrunk by about 9% to US$1.6 billion during the month under review.

Last time, it was in June 2019 when the trade deficit aggregated at US$15.3 billion.

Of the 30 key sectors, as many as 18 segments showed negative growth in exports during the month.

Shipments of petroleum products, plastic, carpet, gems and jewellery, and leather products contracted by 7.4%, 10.6%, 5.2%, 6.9%, and 7.6% respectively, in January.

The country's outbound shipments have remained subdued so far this year. It may have a bearing on the overall economic growth, which is pegged at 5% for the current financial year.

Industrial output declined by 0.3% in December 2019 due to poor performance mainly by manufacturing.

In January, while oil imports grew 15.3% to US$ 13 billion, non-oil imports fell by 6.7% to US$28.2 billion.

Cumulatively, during the April 2019-January 2020 period, exports were down 1.9% to US$265.3 billion, while imports contracted by 8.1% to US$398.5 billion.

Trade deficit during the period narrowed to US$133.3 billion as against US$163.3 billion in April-January 2018-19.

Meanwhile, an RBI release showed that services export for December 2019 stood at about US$20 billion while imports were at US$12.6 billion.

Moving on to the news from pharma sector. Dr Reddy's Laboratories announced that the United States Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) has asked it to initiate voluntary action at its Duvvada facility in Andhra Pradesh.

Last week, the audit of Dr. Reddy's Formulations Srikakulum Plant (SEZ) Unit I, Andhra Pradesh, was completed with zero observation by the USFDA.

Earlier on 5 November 2015, USFDA had issued a warning letter to Dr Reddy's over deviations with current good manufacturing practices at its active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) manufacturing facilities in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, as well as over violations at its oncology formulation manufacturing facility at Duvvada.

Of these three manufacturing facilities, API manufacturing facility at Miryalaguda, Telangana and oncology formulation manufacturing facility at Duvvada received Establishment Inspection Reports from the USFDA in June 2017 and February 2019, respectively.

In a separate development, Dr Reddy's on 12 February announced to acquire Wockhardt's select divisions of branded generics business in India and a few other international territories of Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bhutan and Maldives for a consideration of Rs 18.5 billion.

Dr. Reddy's share price opened up by 0.4%.

Here's an interesting data on Dr. Reddy's Lab, investing just Rs 100,000 in Dr. Reddy's Labs in 1992, it would have given a whopping Rs 4.89 crores in 2014!

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To know what's moving the Indian stock markets today, check out the most recentĀ share market updates here.

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