Indian equity markets had a rather volatile trading session today. The indices began the day's proceedings on a weak note and languished in the red for most part of the trading session. The afternoon session saw buying activity gain momentum as a result of which the indices managed to close barely above the dotted line. While the BSE-Sensex today closed higher by 22 points, the NSE-Nifty closed higher by 9 points. The BSE Mid Cap and the BSE Small Cap index did better to notch gains of 1% each. Gains were largely seen in metals and oil and gas stocks.
As regards global markets, most Asian indicesclosed in the red today while European indices have opened mixed. The rupee was trading at Rs 58.74 to the dollar at the time of writing.
Auto stocks closed mixed today. While Bajaj Auto and Maruti Suzuki found favour, Tata Motors and Hero Motocorp closed in the red. As per a leading business daily, Tata Motors has unveiled unveiled eight new refreshers across five brands. These brands include Indigo eCS, Sumo Gold, Nano, Indica, the Explorer edition of Safari Storme, CNG variants of Indica, Indigo and Nano. The company will utilise the capacity at Sanand to make small cars which are part of a product portfolio planned for roll-out by 2020. These products will not only be in segments in which the company already has a presence but also in newer ones. It must be noted that Tata Motors has been facing considerable pressure as far as its passenger vehicles business is concerned. This has been on the back of declining volumes and market share and stiff competition. For instance in FY13, Tata Motors' passenger car sales in the domestic market (including Fiat and Jaguar Land Rover vehicles) plunged 31% YoY to 229,325 units during the year. The company's market share in this space stood at 8.9% for the period till March 2013.
As per a leading business daily, pharma major Dr.Reddy's has made a Para IV filing with the US FDA for the drug Zemplar. This drug belongs to the US based company AbbVie Inc, which is a spun-off entity of Abbott. Accordingly, as per the Para IV process, AbbVie has filed a suit against Dr.Reddy's for infringement of the three patents. Zemplar (Paricalcitol) is a drug used for the prevention and treatment of secondary hyperparathyroidism (excessive secretion of parathyroid hormone) associated with chronic renal failure. AbbVie generated revenues to the tune of US$ 383 m from Zemplar in 2012. Of this, US$ 230 m was from the US. The US generics market has become quite competitive in the past few years. The only way for generics companies to sustain growth in this market is through new product launches on a continuous basis. This is either by making niche launches or Para IV filings. As far as the latter is concerned, while the outcome remains highly uncertain, in many instances generic companies enter settlement agreements with the innovator which provides some kind of revenue visibility as far as that particular drug is concerned. The stock of Dr.Reddy's closed lower today.