The Indian markets have started today's session on an extremely positive note. The benchmark indices opened above the breakeven mark and soon moved further into the green. They have managed to hold on to their gains since then. Other key Asian markets are in the green with Japan (up 1.3%) leading the pack of gainers. The US markets closed lower by 1.3% last Friday.
Currently in India, heavyweights from the BSE-Sensex are trading strong with metal and banking majors finding investors' favour. The BSE-Sensex is trading higher by around 227 points, while the NSE-Nifty is up by about 72 points. Buying interest is also being witnessed among mid and small cap stocks as the BSE-Midcap and BSE-Smallcap indices are trading higher by 1.6% and 1.9% respectively. The rupee is trading at 45.43 to the US dollar.
FMCG stocks have opened the day on a positive note. Gainers here include Henkel India and P&G Hygiene. As per a leading business daily, FMCG major Dabur plans to acquire companies in the personal care and healthcare space in the Middle East and Africa this fiscal. The company is in talks with several companies. Dabur is flexible about the size of the deals and will raise funds if necessary for large transactions. It may be noted that it had announced plans last year of spending Rs 10 bn for acquisitions but could not find suitable deals. In our view, acquisitions in Middle East and Africa make sense for the company as it already has a presence there. In fact, these regions account for nearly 50% of its overseas revenues, which in turn account for about 20% of the company's topline.
Retailing stocks have also opened the day on a positive note. Gainers here include Trent and Pantaloon. As per a leading business daily, Titan plans to spend Rs 10 bn in the next five years with an increased focus on international markets. The amount will be spent on marketing and retail, sales and distribution, and research and development. It is part of the company's plan to become the world's third largest watch company. In fact, it aims to become the number one watch brand by 2015 in the mid-market segment in 8 out of the 26 countries in which it operates outside India. Consequently, it has set a target of reaching Rs 3 bn in international revenues from the present Rs 1 bn. However, India will remain Titan's core. It has a 65% share of the Indian watch market. Hence, the company wants to increase its 'World of Titan' stores from 295 stores now to 325, by the end of FY11. It also wants to increase its 'Fast Track stores' stores from 24 stores now to 100 by the end of FY11.