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Sensex Trades Strong; Business Confidence at All Time High
Tue, 11 Apr 01:30 pm

After opening the day on a positive note, share markets in India have continued the momentum and are trading comfortably above the dotted line. Apart from stocks in the metals sector and stocks in the power sector, all sectoral indices are trading on a positive note. Stocks in the realty sector and stocks in the FMCG sector are leading the gains.

The BSE Sensex is trading up by 198 points (up 0.7%), and the NSE Nifty is trading up by 44 points (up 0.5%). Meanwhile, the BSE Mid Cap index is trading up by 0.3%, while the BSE Small Cap index is trading up by 0.7%. The rupee is trading at 64.51 to the US$.

In news from stocks in the auto sector. Tata Motors share price was in focus today as the company reported a 9% year-on-year (YoY) rise in global sales in March.

The company clocked in total sales in March, including that of Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) vehicles, at 129,951 units. The company had sold 118,750 units in the same month last year.

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In the passenger vehicles category, global sales stood at 87,355 units last month as against 73,515 units during the same period in 2016, up 19%.

However, sales of commercial vehicles declined by 6% to 42,596 units as against 45,235 units in the year-ago month. Notably, commercial vehicle sales had also fallen on a YoY basis in February 2017.

Improved consumer sentiments, waning effect of notebandi and aggressive push by the market players has led to recovery of Small & Light Commercial Vehicles (S&LCV) segment volumes, this month, it added. The volumes were mostly driven by a positive buyers' sentiment couple of months out of notebandi, and investments ahead of the feared price rise in the new fiscal.

On the other hand, sales of luxury brand Jaguar Land Rover grew 11% to 71,609 units in March compared to 64,579 units in the same month 2016.

The company also released cumulative passenger vehicle wholesales for FY 2016-17. Tata motors recorded 757,994 units (including JLR) in global sales in FY 2016-17.

JLR alone dominated Tata Motors global passenger vehicles sales by selling over 600,000 in the same period.

Of the 87,355 wholesales of Tata Motors passenger vehicle sales, as many as 71,609 came from JLR -- which amounted to 82% share.

The cumulative wholesales for the 2016-17 fiscal were also dominated by the subsidiary brand: 600,806 numbers of JLR as against 757,994 of the Tata Motors, which accounted close to 80%.

Moving on to news about the economy. Industry confidence and optimism as measured by the Business Confidence Index (BCI) is at an all-time high according to the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII).

The CII Business Confidence (BCI) has gone up to an all-time high of 64.1 during the fourth quarter of 2016-17, as against 56.5 recorded in the previous quarter.

A sharp uptick in business outlook, at the onset of 2017, underpins the hope that the reform initiatives of the government would unravel a host of investment opportunities for firms, going forward, industry body CII said on the surge in the index.

The significant rise in the index this quarter could be attributed to the distinct improvement in the 'expectations index' even as there is a marginal uptick in the 'current situation index', indicating that business sentiment is strong and firms are particularly upbeat about activity in their sectors in the future, the industry body observed.

The CII's quarterly Business Outlook Survey is based on around 200 responses from large, medium, small and micro firms, covering all regions of the country.

60% of the respondents expect an increase in new orders during January- March 2017, as compared to 41% who witnessed the same in the preceding quarter.

Majority of the firms also expect no change in their domestic and international investment plans during the last quarter of the previous fiscal ended March 31.

And more than half of the firms expect to maintain status quo on their plans about investing in the domestic economy during the quarter.

Key macro-economic data released earlier this week showed India's expanded last month due to healthy demand conditions and softer inflationary pressure.

The Nikkei India Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) which is a composite indicator of manufacturing performance rose to a five-month high of 52.5 in March, from 50.7 reported for February.

An index reading of above 50 indicates an overall increase in economic activity, and below 50 an overall decrease.

PMI Continues to Growth

With a host of positive data coming in, business sentiment is at an all-time high. This is reflected with the BSE Sensex touching 30,000 levels.

Even though the trend looks encouraging, we are not entirely convinced that India's growth story will be one way up. In fact, if you have been a reader of Vivek Kaul's Diary, you already know that he has identified an underlying trend. One that holds the potential to derail India's grand plans for the future.

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