is trading up by 40 points while NSE-Nifty
is trading 12 points above the dotted line. BSE Midcap index is up by 0.1% while the BSE Small cap index is trading 0.2% above yesterday's closing. The rupee is trading at 44.75 to the US dollar.
Food and tobacco stocks are trading firm led by Wadala Commodities and Godfrey Phillips. As per a leading financial daily, ITC Hotels has picked up a 26% stake in a joint venture with Espirit Hotels for Rs 450 m. This JV has been formed to build a luxury hotel in Hyderabad. The project is at the planning stage and is expected to be launched this calendar year. The hotel will be located close to the existing ITC Kakatiya at Hyderabad. It may be noted that ITC which is one of the biggest players in the hospitality industry in India, is looking increase its rooms inventory by 50% over the next three to four years. This capacity expansion will be either through acquisitions or developments or through management contracts. The company has four brands ITC Hotels, WelcomHotel, Fortune Hotels and WelcomHeritage Hotels and operates 110 hotels spread across the brands. As per a company spokesperson, ITC plans to operate 150 hotels and is investing US$ 2 bn for expansion of its hotels business. The funding for this capacity expansion will be done through internal accruals.
Steel stocks are trading firm led by SAIL and Adhunik Metals. As per a leading financial daily, Tata Steel is expecting steel demand to increase by 11% in FY2012. This will mainly be possible because of the increase in the number of infrastructure investments in the country. As we all know, steel is a major input for all infrastructure projects. It may be recollected that steel demand grew by 9.9% in the last year to reach to over 65 metric tonnes. In April this year, steel demand was 5.03 m tonnes, which implies a growth of 1.8% over the same month last year. As per management, rising inflation surely is a concern but it is not alarming at the moment.