Asian markets have opened the day on a mixed note. Markets in Japan (down 1.4%), Taiwan (down 0.5%) and Hong Kong (down 0.2%) are trading weak. However, markets in China (up 1.2%) and Singapore (up 0.2%) are trading in the green. Indian markets have opened the day on a weak note. Stocks from the automobile and banking space are leading the losses.
The BSE-Sensex is trading lower by around 216 points (1.2%), while the NSE-Nifty is down by around 68 points (1.2%). BSE Midcap and BSE Small cap stocks have started the day on a flat note. The rupee is trading at 45.13 to the US dollar.
Engineering stocks have opened the day on a weak note with Punj Lloyd, L&T and ABB trading in the red. However, Thermax is trading firm. L&T is in the process of achieving financial closure for its recently bagged Hyderabad Metrorail project. The original cost of the project was earlier estimated to be around Rs 121 bn. However, since the length of the route is expected to be increased, the cost has increased to Rs 148 bn. L&T will infuse equity of about Rs 34 bn. The remainder Rs 114 bn will be raised via debt from a consortium of 10 banks led by SBI. SBI is the lead banker with Rs 21 bn.
Auto stocks have also opened the day on a weak note with M&M, Tata Motors, Ashok Leyland and Maruti Suzuki leading the pack of losers. Hero Honda's promoter firm Hero Investments Pvt Ltd (HIPL) has pledged about 10.6 m shares with IL&FS Trust Company Ltd for an estimated Rs 15.8 bn. The shares represent 5.32% of the total paid-up capital of Hero Honda. HIPL is one of the main shareholders of Hero Honda with 17.33% stake as on December 31, 2010. In December 2010, the promoters of HIPL, the B M Munjal family, had agreed to buy out the entire 26% stake of Japan's Honda in Hero Honda for an undisclosed sum.
It is understood that the Munjals are looking to raise funds to finance the buyout through stake sale in HIPL to private equity and other foreign funds.