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Banking stocks lead the gains
Fri, 27 May 09:30 am

Most Asian stock markets have opened the day on a firm note. Stock markets in South Korea (up 0.6%), Indonesia (up 0.2%), Hong Kong (up 0.8%) and China (up 0.1%) are trading firmly in the green whereas Japan (down 0.2%) is marginally down. The Indian stock markets have opened the day on a firm note. Stocks in the banking and metals space are leading the gains. However, auto stocks are facing some selling pressure.

The BSE-Sensex is trading higher by around 114 points (0.6%), while the NSE-Nifty is up by around 30 points (0.5%). BSE Midcap index and the BSE Small capp is up by about 0.5% and 0.3%. The rupee is trading at 45.3 to the US dollar.

Engineering stocks have opened the day on a firm note with BEML (Bharat Earth Movers Ltd) and Lakshmi Machine Works trading firm. Blue Star has announced fourth quarter results for financial year 2010-2011 (4QFY11). The company reported a 6.3% YoY growth in sales while its net profits have declined by 27.6% YoY. Standalone sales grew by around 6.3% YoY during 4QFY11 and by 13.1% YoY during FY11. Sales growth was led by the cooling products (CP) and professional electronics and industrial systems (PEIS) segments, which grew by 42.6% YoY and 13.3% YoY respectively. Operating profit declined 8% YoY during 4QFY11. Operating profit margins have contracted by 1.7% as compared to 4QFY10. Net profits declined by 27.6% YoY during 4QFY11. Sharp spike in the interest costs and increase in tax expenses was responsible for the decline in net profits. The interest cost more than doubled during 4QFY11. Order book as on March 31, 2011 stood at Rs 19.6 bn, up 16% YoY.

Oil & gas stocks have opened the day on a firm note with BPCL (Bharat Petroleum) and Indian Oil Corp leading the gains. Hindustan Petroleum (HPCL) has announced its results for the quarter and year ended March 2011. During 4QFY11, the company's topline rose by 26% YoY to Rs 399 bn. Operating profits increased by 41% YoY as margins improved from 4.9% in 4QFY10 to 5.5% in FY11. At the bottomline level, profits surged by 38% YoY. Net margins improved from 2.4% in 4QFY10 to 2.8% in 4QFY11. For the full year ended March 2011, net sales and profits registered a growth of 24% YoY and 18% YoY respectively. The company's board has recommended a final dividend of Rs 14 per share for FY11. Despite the recent hike in petrol prices, the company is still incurring a loss of Rs 4.5 per litre.

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