Despite some pressure on IT and energy stocks, the indices in Indian stock markets opened higher and managed to recoup most of the losses seen in yesterday's session. Commodity and auto stocks witnessed some buying interest today. While the BSE-Sensex closed higher by around 133 points, the NSE-Nifty closed higher by around 50 points. The BSE Mid Cap and the BSE Small Cap indices closed marginally in the positive.
As regards global markets, Asian indices across the board closed higher today while most European indices have opened flat to positive. The rupee was trading at Rs 51.5 to the dollar at the time of writing.
ABB, the leading power and automation technology group, has won an order worth Rs 75 crore from Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) to provide power solutions for a planned metro rail network for Jaipur, in Rajasthan. The order was booked in the first quarter. Strong order intake, healthy execution coupled with increasing share of exports to Middle East, Bangladesh and Africa have contributed to the top-line growth of the company in 2011. Considering the current macro- environment, revenue growth and healthy order intake from the power segment have come in as a positive surprise. However, we believe that margins may come under pressure due to tough competition and raw material price inflation. Nonetheless, we believe that the cost optimization strategies undertaken by the company are expected to yield results over the longer term.
Maruti Suzuki India, country's largest car maker is likely to roll out its first made-for-India car Ertiga, on April 12, 2012. It will introduce K-14 VVT 1.4 litre petrol engine for the first time in India with new this car. The car will also be launched in diesel variant. The company has termed its new vehicle as Life Utility Vehicle (LUV). This is a seven seater car and will come with a fuel efficiency of 20.77 kmpl for its diesel variant. It is a global product from Suzuki, but it is designed primarily for India, though it will be sold in other ASEAN countries later. The company will manufacture the new car at its plant in Gurgaon. With Ertiga, Maruti Suzuki will step into the Utility Vehicle (UV) segment and effectively create a new compact MPV segment in India.
It must be noted that the company's performance over the last few quarters has been impacted by the slowdown in the overall auto industry and labour troubles at Manesar which severely impacted production and thereby growth. The next few quarters are also likely to be tight for the company as it looks to make up for the loss in production in the quarters gone by. Volatility in exchange rates especially the Yen could also have a bearing on the company's fortunes.