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Sensex Trades on a Volatile Note; Pharma Sector Leads Gains
Tue, 30 May 01:30 pm

After opening the day negative, Indian share markets witnessed volatile activity and are currently trading flat with a positive bias. Sectoral indices are trading on a mixed note, with stocks in the pharma sector and the IT sector witnessing maximum buying interest. Stocks in the FMCG sector and stocks in the capital goods sector are leading the losses.

The BSE Sensex is trading up by 46 points (up 0.2%) and the NSE Nifty is trading up by 9 points (up 0.1%). Meanwhile, the BSE Mid Cap index is trading up by 0.7%, while the BSE Small Cap index is trading flat. The rupee is trading at 64.64s to the US$.

In news from stocks in the PSU sector. BHEL share price fell over 10% after the PSU company announced poor Q4 results.

State-run power equipment maker Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd (BHEL) reported a 57% fall in fourth-quarter net profit. Net profit stood at Rs 2,160 million in the quarter ended March 31, compared with Rs 5,060 million a year earlier.

Total income of the company also dipped 5% to Rs 103 billion during the March quarter as compared to Rs 108.7 billion in the corresponding quarter of 2015-16. While the income from the power segment of business grew 3%, industry segment's earnings declined 20% during the fourth quarter of 2016-17.

In addition to the interim dividend of Rs 0.8 already paid, the board has recommended a final dividend Rs 0.78 per share (face value of Rs 2 each) for 2016-17.

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At the time of writing, BHEL share price was trading down by 10.1%.

The earnings season for the final quarter and financial year FY17 is well underway. And while the markets are touching new highs, there is nothing to cheer about India Inc performance.

Further, the actual performance for the last quarter of FY17 has been far below brokerage estimates.

This trend can be seen clearly in the chart below:

Earnings in Contrast With Market Trends

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Moving on to news from stocks in the oil and gas sector. According to a leading financial daily, state run ONGC has seen a revival in domestic crude oil production in the last fiscal.

ONGC's domestic crude oil production stood at 5.97 MMT during the fiscal ended March 2017, compared to 5.82 MMT during the same period last year. The 2.4% growth came as the PSU was able to monetize discoveries at Ankleshwar, Cauvery (Madnam) and Rajahmundry (Keshnapalli West), among others.

About 60% of the discoveries made by ONGC were monetized in the same year. This gave a significant push to production.

The production is expected to jump further to 6.05 MMT during the current year backed by similar monetisation of Ahmedabad (Gamij) and Mehsana besides existing ones in Cauvery (Madnam) and Rajahmundry (Keshnapalli West).

Of the 23 new discoveries made in last fiscal, 13 discoveries were in the onshore wells and 10 in the offshore wells.

The company drilled its highest-ever number of wells -- 501 -- during FY17, against 392 in FY16 and 401 in FY15.

ONGC's net profit for the quarter ended March 2017 fell by 6% to Rs 43.4 billion on account of higher expenses and the absence of a one-time gain seen in the corresponding quarter last year.

Segment-wise, the company's offshore operations reported a profit of Rs 64.1 billion. Losses for its onshore segment widened to Rs 14.95 billion from Rs.1.2 billion reported in the same period a year back.

At its board meeting, the company also recommended a final dividend at Rs 0.8 per equity share of Rs 5 each, for the Financial Year 2016-17, subject to necessary approval of members at its annual general meeting.

At the time of writing, ONGC share price was trading up by 1.6%.

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