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Asian markets tank on Ukraine worry
Wed, 6 Aug 09:30 am

All major Asian stock markets have opened the day with significant losses owing to concerns that the conflict in Ukraine could worsen. Stock markets in Indonesia (down 1.6%) and Japan (down 0.4 %) are leading the pack of losers. The Indian share markets have also opened the day on a negative note. The sectoral indices are trading mixed with banking and metal indices trading in the red. However, information technology and capital goods indices are trading firm.

The Sensex today is down by around 42 points (0.2%), while the NSE-Nifty is down by about 24 points (0.3%). However, mid and small cap stocks are trading in the green with the BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap indices up by around 0.3% and 0.6% respectively. The rupee is currently trading at Rs 61.09 to the US dollar.

Auto sector stocks have opened the day on a mixed note with Escorts and Eicher Motors leading the gains. However, Hero MotoCorp and Tata Motors are trading weak. India's leading two-wheeler maker Hero MotoCorp has announced its results for the quarter ended June 2014. During the quarter, the company's net sales stood at Rs 69,994 m, higher by 14.2% YoY. Operating income grew by 3.5% YoY to Rs 9,472 m as operating margins dropped from 14.9% in 1QFY14 to 13.5% in 1QFY15. At the bottomline level, net profit grew marginally by 2.6% YoY to Rs 5,627.6 m. Net profit margin contracted from 8.9% in 1QFY14 to 8% in 1QFY15.

Information technology stocks have opened the day on a mixed note with Infosys Ltd and Moser Baer India Ltd being the leading gainers. However, NIIT Ltd and Mphasis Ltd are trading in the red. As per the financial daily, India's second largest software services company Infosys Ltd recently received a letter from former directors and investors, T. V. Mohandas Pai and V. Balakrishnan, wherein they have sought a share buyback worth Rs 112 bn (US$ 1.8 bn). The reason for the demand of share buyback is that they believe that the company's stock is significantly undervalued and that a buyback would boost the stock value. In addition, they have also proposed that the company should announce an ongoing buyback program of as much as 40% of the previous year's profit. It is worth noting that as of June 30, 2014, Infosys had cash and short-term investments worth Rs 275.4 bn.

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