Indices in the Indian stock markets broke away from their breakeven hugging trend during the closing stages of the day and as a consequence, closed higher for the fourth day in succession. While BSE-Sensex edged higher by 110 points (up 0.64%), gains on the NSE-Nifty came in at 32 points. BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap indices also edged higher but only marginally, shutting shop higher by around 0.3% each. Nearly three stocks gained for every one that declined on the Sensex today.
Other Asian indices closed mixed today whereas Europe is trading mostly strong currently. The rupee was placed at Rs 51.99 to the dollar at the time of writing.
Today's gains make it four in a row for the benchmark indices. Not since mid-March has such a streak taken place. RBI's (lowering of the interest rate) seems to be the key reason behind the strength in recent times. And should results come out better than expected, market could well go up even more from the current levels. What could spoil the party though is the global environment that remains as uncertain as ever. Besides, if inflation in India refuses to slow down, all bets would be off we believe. Thus, investors take comfort from the recent Reserve Bank of India (RBI) move at their own peril. There is a lot more that needs to go right before a sustained bout of buying takes shape.
ACC, one of India's largest cement companies closed weak today and was down as much as 4%. The negative reaction to the stock price came on the back of its poor financial performance in the first quarter of the current calendar year. As per reports, its profits fell by a strong 56% YoY despite a 19% rise in overall topline. On a consolidated basis too, the performance wasn't any different what with net profits plunging 57% YoY in spite of an 18% growth in total income. The drop in profits came about due to the company's decision to change with retrospective effect, the method of providing for depreciation on captive power plants. While the profits would have been higher but for this change, all round cost pressures seem to have also impacted the margin profile of the company negatively.
Indian Hotels, the hospitality major is mulling to raise Rs 2 bn from unsecured 5-yr bonds through an issue that would offer a low coupon of 2% but would pay a premium on redemption, taking the internal rate of return to 9.75%. The funds are most likely to be used for expansion purposes. It should be noted that the company is aggressively expanding its portfolio and recently opened a new spa resort in northern Kerala, the Vivanta by Taj- Bekal. This took the total tally of Vivanta by Taj brand to an impressive 24.