Asian stock markets have opened the day on a firm note with stock markets in Singapore (up 0.6%), China (up 0.4%) and Hong Kong (up 0.4%) leading the gains. The Indian stock markets have also opened the day on a firm note. Stocks in the metal and power space are leading the gains.
The BSE-Sensex is up by 133 points (0.8%), while the NSE-Nifty is up by around 44 points (0.8%). Mid cap and small cap stocks are also trading in the green, with the BSE Mid cap and BSE Small cap indices up by 1.2% and 1% respectively. The rupee is trading at Rs 51.33 to the US dollar.
Oil & gas stocks have opened the day on a firm note with Gujarat Gas, Oil India Ltd. (OIL) and Gujarat State Petronet leading the pack of gainers. The stock of Indraprastha Gas Ltd. (IGL) had tumbled recently after Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board (PNGRB) decided to lower the network tariff of IGL by 63% and reduced compression charges by 59% for compressed natural gas (CNG) supplied by it. IGL has now filed a petition in the high court against the oil regulator's order. However, it has not yet obtained a stay order on the directive. The Delhi High Court has issued a notice to PNGRB. The matter has been listed for final hearing on April 19, 2012.
Power stocks have opened the day on a firm note with Tata Power, Reliance Power and GVK Power & Infra trading in the green. As per a leading financial daily, power plants are facing a short supply of coal. As per Central Electricity Authority data, the stock of coal at 30 power plants, with a total capacity of about 26,320 MW, is at a 'critical' level. This means that the stock would last less than seven days. What is even more worrying is the fact that 25 of these plants, with a capacity of over 21,000 MW, have stocks at 'supercritical' levels. Meaning, these plants would run out of stock in less than four days. Even worse, four plants have virtually no stock. On an average, power plants usually keep a coal stock for about 20-30 days. The main reason the decreasing stock levels could be attributed to inadequate coal allocation and fewer imports.