Backed by persistent selling activity, Indian equity markets continued to trade weak during the post noon trading session. Barring stocks from the IT sector, all the sectoral indicies are trading in the red. Stocks from the realty and banking sectors are witnessing maximum selling pressure.
Telecom stocks are trading mixed, with Bharti Airtel and Idea Cellular leading among gainers while ITI and Himachal Futuristic are the leading losers. Bharti Airtel has announced June 2013 quarter results. The company has reported a 9.3% YoY increase in total revenues. Mobile subscriber base in India grew by 2% YoY, while total count of subscribers stood at around 190.9 m at the end of June 2013. Total subscriber base on the network (including South Asia and African operations) grew by 5% YoY during the quarter. Operating margins improved by 2.7% YoY to 32.2%. The positive effect of operating margins was mitigated by the increase in interest costs as well as higher tax outflow. There was an exceptional gain on account of the merger between Bharti Infratel Ventures Ltd (BIVL) and Indus Towers. However, the effect of this too was negated by the increase in taxes and minority interest, which was again related to the same merger. As a result net profits declined by 9.6% YoY. Excluding the exceptional items, net profits declined by around 7% YoY. Bharti Airtel was trading up by 5.2%.
Most of the mining stocks are trading in the red with Gujarat NRE Coke and Metals and Minerals Trading Corporation of India Ltd. (MMTC) being the biggest losers. Only Coal India is trading in the green. As per a leading financial daily, the Mines Ministry has demanded a cut in iron ore export tax. The government in 2011 had raised the export tax on iron ore from 20% to 30% to increase the supply of iron ore in the domestic markets. However, higher taxes as well as ban on shipment in major iron ore producing states of Karnataka and Goa have adversely impacted iron ore exports.