The Indian indices continued to trade lower on account of sustained selling activity among the index heavyweights during the last two hours of the trading session. Software and metals stocks are witnessing maximum selling pressure.
The BSE-Sensex is trading down 177 points and the NSE-Nifty is trading down 40 points. The BSE Mid Cap index is trading up 0.2%, while the BSE Small Cap index is trading up 0.2% today. The rupee is trading at 58.84 to the US dollar.
Steel stocks are trading mixed today with Jindal Saw leading the pack of gainers. However, SAIL and Adhunik Metaliks are trading down. As per a leading business daily, the Odisha government is expected to pass orders that will allow steel majors, Tata Steel and SAIL to restart their mining operations in the state which has been held since 16th May 2014. It may be noted that the Supreme Court had earlier ordered closing 26 mines in Odisha on account of non-renewal of leases. The court had given the state six months to take a call for the renewal. Those 26 mines include captive mines of iron ore and manganese of Tata Steel and SAIL. In a relief move, the state government has been quick to pass the order within a fortnight as Odisha mines account for more than half of the country's iron ore supplies. Over 50% of Tata Steel's 17 million tonnes of iron ore production comes from its captive mines in Odisha, while SAIL's entire Rourkela plant is dependent on its mines in Odisha for the key raw materials.
Energy stocks are trading mixed. Essar Oil is trading firm, while Petronet LNG is trading weak today. As per a leading business daily, Petronet LNG may have to give up its LNG pipeline project in Kerala which has been stalled on account of procedural delays. The project is expected to link Kochi with Bangalore and Mangalore. In fact, as per the company it was aiming to complete the project by this May. If the issue is not addressed in a time bound manner, the company might look for an alternate route. As such, the proposed alternate canal alignment will not have issues connected to land acquisition and litigation. And will also save money needed for taking over land. The company has appointed GAIL India to execute the project.