Asian stock markets have opened the day on a positive note. Japan (up 4.4%) appears to have bounced back from the catastrophe of the tsunami. Besides Japan, Taiwan (up 0.7%) and Korea (up 0.5%) are the leading gainers. However, Hong Kong (down 0.5%) and Indonesia (down 0.5%) are trading in the red. The Indian stock markets too have opened the day on a good note. Stocks in the energy and metal space are the leading gainers.
The BSE-Sensex is trading higher by around 190 points (1.0%), while the NSE-Nifty is up by around 50 points (1.0%). Midcap and small cap stocks are trading in the positive as well, with the BSE Midcap and BSE Small cap indices up by about 0.9% and 0.8% respectively. The rupee is trading at 45.16 to the US dollar.
Engineering stocks have opened the day on a mixed note with Voltas and Blue Star trading in the red while Praj Industries and Siemens opening in the green. Voltas is expecting a 50% growth in sales of air conditioners by the end of fiscal year 2012. The company is likely to close this fiscal with sales of 8 lakh units. This means the target for the next year is about 12 lakh units. By 2015, the aim is to achieve a sales figure of 30 lakh units. Hence, the Tata Group firm plans to increase production capacity while also ramping up research and development. It has earmarked an investment of about Rs 650-700 m to expand its manufacturing facilities and on marketing activities during the upcoming fiscal. For expansion of facilities and to build a separate R&D hub, the company will require an investment of Rs 150-200 m. The balance Rs 500 m will be the marketing budget for the year. Voltas is also enhancing its distribution channels, particularly in the Tier-II and Tier-III cities. The company currently has around 5,000 channel partners across the country. It aims to increase it by 20% in FY12. The company has introduced 70 new models of air conditioners for this summer season.
Telecom stocks have opened the day on a good note. Reliance Communications, Tata Communications and Bharti Airtel are leading the gainers’ pack. The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has decided to regularize the norms for security regarding telecommunications. The department has proposed a penalty of up to Rs 500 m to Rs 1 bn in case any malware is found on the telecom equipment that is imported by the telecom operator. This is way better than the earlier norm that has stated that the penalty would be as high as 100% of the contract value on the contractor as well as the mobile operator. The DoT has repeatedly expressed security concerns regarding the import of telecom equipment into the country. In lines with this, it had banned import of equipment last year. This had led to a delay in the rollout plans for many operators which proved to be detrimental especially for the new operators. Earlier this year, DoT had imposed heavy fines on some telecom firms for not meeting their rollout obligations.