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Indian share markets open in the red
Mon, 18 Mar 09:30 am

The major Asian stock markets have opened the day on a weak note with stock markets in Hong Kong (down 2.1%) and Japan (down 2.1%) leading the losses. The Indian share markets indices have also opened the day in the negative. Barring FMCG, all sectoral indices have opened in the red led by the stocks in the realty and metal space.

The Sensex today is down by around 163 points (0.8%), while the NSE-Nifty is down by 50 points (0.8%). Mid and small cap stocks have also opened in the red with the BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap indices down by around 0.7% and 0.3% respectively. The rupee is trading at Rs 54.33 to the US dollar.

Energy stocks have opened the day mainly in the red with Indraprastha Gas Ltd (IGL) and Chennai Petroleum Corporation Ltd leading the losses. However, Indian Oil Corporation Ltd (IOC) and Castrol Ltd are trading firm. As per a leading financial daily, state run oil companies - IOC, Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd (BPCL), Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL) and Engineers India Ltd (EIL) have evinced interest in buying stake in Rs 90 bn gas pipeline between Surat and Paradip. It was in April last year that Gas Authority of India Ltd (GAIL) secured rights to lay the pipeline with a capacity to transport up to 60 million standard cubic metres a day (mscmd). As per GAIL's management, the company has not yet concluded the joint venture structure. It intends to complete the pipeline by 2015-16. While GAIL will hold 51% stake in the pipeline, the other state run firms plan to secure capacity for their own use through equity investment.

Engineering stocks have opened the day mainly in the red with Sanghvi Movers Ltd and Manugraph India Ltd leading the losses. However, Kalapataru Power and Alstom Projects are trading firm. As per a leading financial daily, Larsen & Toubro Ltd's infrastructural arm L&T Infrastructure Development Projects is in advanced negotiations to divest up to 20% stake to marquee investors, including Malaysian sovereign fund Khazanah. The division handles assets worth Rs 450 bn. The proposed transaction is likely to value the infrastructure company at around Rs 125 bn. As such, funds worth around Rs 25 bn are likely to be raised by selling stakes to potential investors. The management has declined to comment on the matter.

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Feb 22, 2018 (Close)