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Realty, metals take markets higher
Mon, 9 Aug 01:30 pm

The Indian markets continued to move upwards on the back of persistent buying activity during the previous two hours of trade. Currently stocks from the realty, consumer durables and metal spaces are leading the pack of gainers while those from the oil and gas and IT spaces are trading weak.

The BSE-Sensex is trading higher by about 105 points (up 0.6%), while the NSE-Nifty is up by around 35 points (up 0.6%). However, it seems investors are preferring stocks from the mid and smallcap spaces as the BSE-Midcap and BSE-Smallcap indices are trading higher by 1.1% and 1.4% respectively. The rupee is trading at 46.07 to the US dollar

Healthcare stocks are currently trading mixed with Cadila Healthcare, Elder Pharma and Ranbaxy trading firm, while Indoco Remedies, Biocon and Cipla are trading weak. Aurobindo Pharma announced its results for the quarter ended June 2010 recently. The company reported a revenue growth of 8% YoY during the quarter. However, this is considered as a subdued performance as revenues from the US formulations and penicillin API businesses declined on a year on year basis. However, the overall formulations business grew by 5% YoY. On the other hand, revenues from Europe grew by 60% YoY on the back of a lower base. The company's API business, reported a growth of 15% YoY. At the operating level, the company witnessed some pressure as it operating margins contracted by 4.3% YoY to 18.6%. Operating profits for the quarter declined by 12% YoY. This was mainly on account of an increase in staff costs and other expenditure (as percentage of sales). Aurobindo's profits fell by 69% YoY, largely due to forex losses of Rs 418 m during the quarter (as against forex gains of Rs 575 m in 1QFY10). On excluding this forex items, net profits declined by 14% YoY on account of poor operating performance.

Steel stocks are currently trading firm led by JSW Steel, Tata Steel and SAIL. A leading business daily recently reported that steel major, SAIL is looking at investing Rs 15 bn to develop its domestic coking coal mines. This move would help it reduce its dependence on commodity, which has been the key reason behind the volatile steel prices. It is believed that SAIL will be able to produce nearly 5 m tonnes of coking coal from its mines in Jharkhand, allowing it to reduce import by at least one-fifth. SAIL consumes nearly 14 m tonnes of coking coal. But about 30% of its requirements are sourced from domestic markets (including its captive mines), while the balance is imported. The entire Rs 15 bn investment will go towards developing its two mines in Jharkhand - Tasra and Sitanalla.

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