Indian markets have started today's session on a volatile note. The benchmark indices opened above the breakeven mark, but soon slipped into the negative territory. Since then, these have not been able to stay in the green for long, despite repeated attempts. Other key Asian markets are in the red with Japan (down 1.6%) leading the pack of losers. The US markets closed lower by 0.1% yesterday.
Currently in India, heavyweights from the BSE-Sensex are trading weak with telecom and banking majors facing the brunt of selling activity. The BSE-Sensex is trading lower by around 5 points, while the NSE-Nifty is down by about 1 point. However, buying interest is being witnessed among mid and small cap stocks as the BSE-Midcap and BSE-Smallcap indices are trading higher by 0.4% and 0.6% respectively. The rupee is trading at 46.63 to the US dollar.
Software stocks have opened the day on a positive note. Gainers here include TCS and Wipro. TCS announced its 1QFY11 results yesterday. The company reported a net sales growth of 6% QoQ during the quarter. This was largely driven by 8% growth in business from North America. Sales from Europe declined 6% QoQ. Operating margins declined by 0.9% QoQ, largely owing to higher employee costs. The company added a net of 3,270 employees during the quarter. Attrition rate rose to 13.1% at the end of the quarter. At the net profit level, TCS reported a decline of 5% QoQ. This was due to weaker operating margins and lower other income. The company suffered on account of adverse currency movements as well. The fall in margins would have been higher but for gains from higher offshoring revenues and disciplined pricing.
Energy stocks have opened the day on a negative note. Losers here include GAIL and BPCL. As per a leading business daily, Indian Oil is set to enter the gas pipeline business. The industry has so far been dominated by GAIL and Reliance Industries. Indian Oil will enter the space by putting in a bid for the Mallavaram (Andhra Pradesh) to Vijaipur (Madhya Pradesh) pipeline which will evacuate gas from Gujarat State Petroleum Corporation's gas discovery in Krishna-Godavari basin. In fact, it is planning to bid for all three trunk pipelines for which bids are being invited. The other two pipelines are Mehsana (Gujarat) to Bhatinda (Punjab) and Bhatinda to Jammu & Kashmir. It may be noted that Indian Oil has a crude and product pipeline network of 10,000 km. With the oil marketing business saddled with losses, the public sector fuel retailers are looking at newer ways of generating revenues.