Most major Asian equity markets have opened the day on a weak note with stock markets in Japan (down 0.8%) and Taiwan (down 0.6%) leading the losses in the region. The Indian share market indices have also opened the day on a weak note. Stocks in the FMCG and metal space are leading the pack of losers. However, realty and power stocks are trading firm.
The Sensex today is down by around 23 points (0.1%), while the NSE-Nifty is down by around 5 points (0.1%). However, mid and small cap stocks are trading in the green with the BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap indices up by around 0.2% each. The rupee is trading at Rs 56.91 to the US dollar.
Auto stocks have opened the day on a firm note with Maharashtra Scooter, TVS Motor Company, Tata Motors and Force Motors trading in the green. After having lost its position amongst the top three players in the Indian two-wheeler market to players such as Honda Motorcycle and Scooters India and Bajaj Auto, TVS Motor Company has chalked out a slew of new product launches to get back its position. The Chennai-based two-wheeler company is making an investment of about Rs 3-4 bn on product development and refreshing its current product range. It plans to launch six new products which will also include bigger motorcycles in the 200-250 cc categories. The market launch of these products is expected to be around 2014-15. It must be noted that so far the company only produces upto 180 cc and below.
Power stocks have opened the day on a firm note with Tata Power and GVK Power & Infrastructure leading the gains. As per a leading financial daily, India's largest power producer National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) has accepted the changes proposed by the Prime Minister's Office in the new fuel supply agreement. This puts an end to the disagreement between NTPC and Coal India. Earlier in the month, the PMO directed the state-run coal giant to fix the penalty for shortfall in supplies at 10%, which was earlier at 0.01%. The trigger point for penalty has been set at 65% of the commitment for the first year. This means that if Coal India supplies less than 65% of the committed amount of coal to NTPC, it would be liable to pay a 10% penalty. The trigger point will be raised to 72% in the fourth year (2015-16) and to 80% in the fifth year (2016-17). NTPC would meet the shortfall in coal supply through imports. Coal India is expected to take a final call on the revised terms early next month.