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Indian Indices Trade Firm
Mon, 18 Jul 11:30 am

After opening the day on a positive note, the Indian stock markets have added to their early gains. Sectoral indices are trading on a positive note with stocks from the auto, banking and realty sectors leading the gains.

The BSE Sensex is trading up 152 points (up 0.6%) and the NSE Nifty is trading up 35 points (up 0.4%). The BSE Mid Cap index is trading up by 0.4%, while the BSE Small Cap index is trading up 0.7%. The rupee is trading at 67.08 to the US$.

Stocks in the automobile space are trading on a positive note with Tata Motors and Bajaj Auto witnessing maximum buying interest. In a step further towards the conversion of old vehicles into hybrid electric vehicles, the government has notified rules for retro-fitment of electric kit of vehicles. As per an article in the Economic Times, the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways notified that the retro-fitment of the hybrid electric system kit to vehicles having Gross Vehicle Weight not exceeding 3,500 kg shall be permitted if it conforms to Bharat Stage-II or subsequent emission norms. Further, the retro-fitment is only allowed for vehicles that have been not retro-fitted earlier.

Retrofitting is the addition of new technology or features to older systems. The above retro-fitment applies to the vehicles that meet emission norms and are run on either diesel or gasoline only.

The rules further stated that the installation of type approved hybrid electric system kit shall be done only by an installer authorised by the manufacturer or supplier of such kits. The notification also mentioned that the conversion of vehicles for pure electric operation with fitment of electric kit shall be permitted if the vehicle was manufactured on or after January 1, 1990 and it is not provided with permits for carrying dangerous or hazardous goods.

Last week, the government had allowed conversion of old vehicles into hybrid electric vehicles through retrofitting. Also, the ministry has asked global automotive technology companies Bosch and Cummins to provide the retrofitting technology. The transport ministry will form a vehicle retrofitting policy for old vehicles once the technology is made available in India. The conversion, which would be voluntary, is expected to cost around Rs 1 lakh.

The development is aimed to curb the rising vehicular pollution that is growing at an alarming pace. It also follows the government's old-vehicle-scrapping-policy.

With the above measures in place, the owners of old vehicles will get a deal for themselves. Also, there will be new vehicles plying on Indian roads thus leading to lesser pollution. Further, the government will get more money from taxes on new vehicle purchases and retrofitting. The measures will also benefit interlinked sectors. For example, the steel industry will get good quality scrap, and hence will be less dependent on imports. Further developments and implementation of the technology will be the key things to watch out for going forward in this space.

Moving on to the news from the commodity space... Crude oil is witnessing volatility today. At the time of writing, crude oil was trading at Rs 3,084/barrel, marginally up by 0.1%. The volatility is led by fears of global supply glut.

Last week, crude oil witnessed losses on worries that US shale drillers have adapted to lower prices. It was noted that Asian refiners had begun to cut crude orders in order to adjust the sharp rise in crude prices witnessed since the start of this year. Also, data released last week showed a rise in US stockpiles which led to further sell-off.

To keep a regular tab on the movements in crude oil and other commodities, you can read weekly market commentary from the Daily Profit Hunter team. Their weekly commentary tracks the developments in the global economy as well as currency and commodity markets.

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