Indian equity markets began the day's proceedings on a weak note and traded in a range bound manner for most of the morning session. Buying activity intensified in the afternoon session and the final trading hour saw the indices finish just above the dotted line. While the BSE-Sensex closed higher by 60 points, the NSE-Nifty closed higher by 21 points. The BSE Mid Cap ended the day up by 0.4%, while the BSE Small Cap closed on a negative note. Gains were largely seen in consumer durables and capital good stocks.
Asian equity markets finished mixed as of the most recent closing prices. The Nikkei 225 gained 0.24%, while the Shanghai Composite led the Hang Seng lower. They fell 0.89% and 0.57% respectively. European markets retreated in early trade. The rupee was trading at 63.76 against the US$ in the post noon session.
According to a leading financial daily, Bharat Petroleum Corporation (BPCL) hopes to have nearly 50 million tonnes (mt) a year of refining capacity in place by 2020-21, a 60% jump from its present level of 31 mt. Over the next six years, BPCL has targeted at least 15 mt of refining capacity from each of its facilities at Kochi, Bina and Mumbai. Capacity increase at its fourth unit at Numaligarh, Assam, will depend on the Centre giving fiscal sops for the north-east in the near future. Till that happens, Numaligarh will most likely operate at 3 mt even while BPCL is exploring the option of increasing this capacity three-fold. This will involve an estimated outlay of between Rs 210-230 bn.
Automobile stocks ended the trading day on an encouraging note with Escorts and Tata Motors being the leading gainers. According to a leading economic daily, Hero MotoCorp, the world's largest two-wheeler manufacturer, is planning to launch its products in Nigeria by the third quarter of this fiscal, for which it has shortlisted a distributor. The company is also gearing up to enter Argentina and Mexico by the end of the year. The company has set a target of selling 1.2 million two-wheelers in global markets by the year 2020. As part of the programme, it is aiming to have presence in 50 countries by 2020. The company already sells its range of two-wheelers in 24 countries across Asia, Africa and Central and South America.