The Indian markets have started today's session on a negative note. The benchmark indices opened below the breakeven mark and slipped further into the red. They have not managed to make any upward movement since then. Other key Asian markets are trading in the red with Japan (down 2.5%) leading the pack of losers. The US markets closed lower by 1.9% yesterday.
Currently in India, heavyweights from the BSE-Sensex are trading weak with metal and construction majors facing the brunt of selling activity. The BSE-Sensex is trading lower by around 193 points, while the NSE-Nifty is down by about 59 points. Selling interest is also being witnessed among mid and small cap stocks as the BSE-Midcap and BSE-Smallcap indices are trading lower by 1.3% and 1.4% respectively. The rupee is trading at 44.62 to the US dollar.
Pharma stocks have opened the day on a negative note. Losers here include Dr. Reddy's and Indoco remedies. As per a leading business daily, Ranbaxy plans to introduce over 100 new products in India by the year-end. In the past, the company launched only 60 to 70 products each year. Of late it has also increased its sales force in specific categories like cardiovascular, diabetics and dermatology. The company has recruited over 1,500 medical representatives to increase its sales force to 4,300. These steps are part of the company's India focused growth plans termed as 'Viraat'. It involves increasing the company's market presence and new product launches. In our view, India has become a high priority area for Ranbaxy ever since Japanese drug major Daiichi Sankyo acquired a majority stake in the company. As per some estimates, India is set to become one of the world's ten largest pharmaceutical markets within a decade.
FMCG stocks have opened the day on a negative note. Losers here include Pidilite Industries and Colgate. Paper products announced its 1QCY10 results. The company has reported a 11% YoY growth in sales during the period. Operating margins for the company fell by 4.1% during the quarter to end at 12.5% due to higher raw material costs as well as higher staff costs. Net profit grew by 81% YoY during the quarter on the back of forex gain as well as extraordinary income from the sale of the company's Nagpur factory. On a like to like basis, net profit fell by 61% YoY.