Barring Hong Kong (down 0.4%), the major Asian stock markets have opened the day on a positive note with the stock markets in Japan (up 0.2%) and Taiwan (up 0.2%) leading the gains. The Indian share markets have opened the day on a firm note as well. Barring software, all sectoral indices have opened in the green with the stocks in the capital goods and banking space leading the gains.
The Sensex today is up by around 150 points (0.7%), while the NSE-Nifty is up by about 45 points (0.7%). The mid and small cap stocks have also opened in the green with the BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap indices up by around 0.5% each. The rupee is currently trading at Rs 61.04 to the US dollar.
Auto stocks have opened the day mainly in the green with Tube Investments Ltd and Hero Motocorp Ltd leading the gains. As per a leading financial daily, Tata Motors Ltd and Chinese carmaker Chery Automobile are holding talks to explore possible tie-ups. These tie ups are likely to include sharing of vehicle platforms, getting access to the market in China for Tata Motors and assisting Chery to enter India. Earlier, Tata Motors had considered buying some of Chery's platforms while working on its 2020 strategy. Also, as reported in a Chinese daily, Chery was in talks to sell the platforms of its QQ, A1 and M1 micro sedans and the A3 compact car to Tata Motors to raise capital and ease its debt burden. As per the sources close to the development, the synergistic benefits from the deal are minimal.
Energy stocks have opened the day mainly in the green with Chennai Petroleum Corporation Ltd (CPCL) and Essar Oil Ltd leading the gains. However, Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Ltd (ONGC) and Indian Oil Corporation Ltd (IOCL) were leading the losses. As per a leading financial daily, ONGC and Oil India Ltd are likely to buy a 10% stake in IOCL from the government at Rs 220 per share. The total amount at this rate will be Rs 53 bn. The sale of 10% stake or 24.27 crore shares is expected to happen through an off market transaction with ONGC and OIL buying 5% stake each. The transaction is expected to take place on March 14 or March 15, 2014. ONGC as of now holds around 8.8% stake in IOC.