The Indian equity markets were trading well above the dotted line as buying activity increased during the post noon trading session. Stocks from the Oil and gas and FMCG spaces were amongst the investors' favourites today.
The Sensex today is trading higher by about 150 points (up 1%), while the NSE-Nifty is trading higher by about 35 points (up 0.7%). The BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap indices are trading higher by about 0.1% each. The rupee is trading at 55.98 to the US dollar.
Stocks of the Indian pharmaceutical companies are trading firm led by Ranbaxy, Cipla and Glenmark Pharmaceuticals. According to Pharmaceuticals Exports Council of India (Pharmexil), India's pharma exports, including drugs, pharmaceuticals and fine chemicals, recorded a growth of 27% to Rs 600 bn for FY12. The country exports cheap, off-patent drugs to over 200 countries. Hyderabad-based Dr.Reddy's Laboratories is the largest drug exporting company in the country. In recent times, Ranbaxy's export turnover has increased substantially after it launched the generic version of the world' best selling drug Lipitor in November 2011. The company's export earnings from selling Lipitor during the six month exclusivity period iare estimated to be Rs 30 bn.
Geographically, US continues to remain the largest overseas market for the domestic pharmaceutical industry. During the nine-month period April-December 2011, the US market accounted for exports valued at Rs 115 bn.
Auto stocks are currently trading firm led by Mahindra & Mahindra, Ashok Leyland and Escorts. A leading business daily has reported that Tata Motors is planning to stop production of its commercial vehicles plant this month to align production with demand for three days. This is not a new situation for the companies given that it had undertaken block closure in 2008 and 2009, when production was stopped for three and five days respectively. The overall gloomy environment has taken a toll on auto companies in the recent past. To add to that, the recent petrol hikes and news relating to increasing taxes on diesel vehicles have not helped matters as well.