Share prices began to plummet across Asia on Monday as hopes dwindled for a resolution to the Greek debt crisis. Japan's Nikkei stock average briefly fell by more than 500 points in early trading, while the euro dropped more than 3%. More than US$35bn was wiped off the Australian stock market in the first hour of trading on Monday.
Meanwhile, the Sensex is down by around 502 points (down 1.8%), while the NSE-Nifty is down by around 147 points (down 1.75%). Mid and small cap stocks are trading equally in the red with the BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap indices down by around 2.3% each. Losses were largely seen in realty and banking stocks. The Indian Rupee has opened lower by 20 paise at 63.84 per dollar versus Friday's closing of 63.64.
According to a leading financial daily, In a bid to raise around Rs 18 bn, the Government is planning to sell 3% stake in Bharat Petroleum Corporation (BPCL), the nation's second largest state oil firm, in FY16. In this regard, the Finance Ministry has moved a Cabinet note for inter-ministerial consultations for selling 21.6 m shares in BPCL through a public offer. The stake sale will fetch the Government over Rs 17.78 bn. The Government holds 54.93% stake in BPCL. The Government is targeting Rs 695 bn from stake sale in PSUs in FY16. Of this, Rs 410 bn is to come from minority share sale in PSUs and Rs 285 bn from strategic stake sale.
Stocks in healthcare sector have opened the trading day on a negative note with Wockhardt Ltd and Opto Circuits bearing most of the brunt. According to a leading financial daily, the government plans to set up Rs 5 bn venture capital funds to boost domestic pharma industry and provide cheaper loans to entities looking to establish or upgrade manufacturing facilities. The government is working on various proposals, including single window clearance for drug approvals, to rejuvenate the local pharma sector and make medicines more affordable. The steps were suggested by a task force formed by the Department of Pharmaceuticals (DoP) in a report submitted to Chemicals and Fertilizers Minister. This is in line with the government's agenda of promoting 'Make in India'. In the report, the task force had also said the DoP may also come up with seed capital and facilitate funding with other financial institutions for the medium and small scale pharmaceuticals industry.