Most Asian stock markets have opened the day on a weak note. Stock markets in Hong Kong (down 0.8%), Taiwan (down 1.2%), South Korea (down 0.8%) and Indonesia (down 1%) are leading the pack of losers. The Indian stock markets have opened the day on a flat note. Stocks in the FMCG and oil & gas space are leading the gains. However, metal, healthcare and power stocks are trading weak.
The BSE-Sensex is trading higher by around 19 points (0.1%), while the NSE-Nifty is almost flat. The midcap and smallcap stocks are in the positive with both the BSE Midcap and BSE Small cap indices up by 0.1% and 0.2% respectively. The rupee is trading at 44.11 to the US dollar.
Cement stocks have opened the day on a positive note with Chettinad Cement, Madras Cements and Shree cements leading the gains. Ambuja Cements has announced its financial results for the quarter ended June 2011 (2QFY12). (The company has a December year ending). During the quarter the company's topline rose by 6.1% YoY to Rs 21,733 m. The rise was mainly due to improvement in cement realisations. Cement and clinker sales volumes during the quarter dropped by 2.2% YoY to 5.29 m tonnes. Operating margins ((EBITDA)) declined from 29.5% in 2QCY10 to 26.8% in 2QCY11 due to high operating costs. The rise was led by higher costs of raw materials as well as power and fuel costs. At the bottomline level, the company reported a decline of 11.2% YoY in net profits. Net profit margins dropped from 19.1% in 2QCY10 to 16% in 2QCY11.
Food stocks have opened the day on a mixed note with United Spirits, Tata Global Beverages and Tata Coffee trading in the green. On the other hand, Lakshmi Energy and Nestle are witnessing selling pressure. ITC Ltd has announced its first quarter results for the financial year 2011-2012 (1QFY12). The company has reported a 20% YoY increase in its revenues. The growth was driven by the sales of cigarettes. The cigarette division saw a growth of 16% YoY during the quarter. It was also driven by strong sales across all of its other segments particularly the agri business, paperboard and packaging and the non-tobacco FMCG segments. Higher raw material costs continued to play spoil sport and led to flat margins during the quarter. Operating margins stood at 33.7% as compared to 33.8% seen during the same period last year. Net profits saw an increase of 25% YoY during the quarter. The stock of the company is currently trading in the green.