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Indian equity markets ended the day just above the dotted line after a volatile trading session today amid a mixed performance of international indices. At the closing bell, the BSE Sensex stood higher by 85 points, while the NSE Nifty finished up by 17 points. The S&P BSE Mid Cap and S&P BSE Small Cap indices finished flat. Gains were largely seen in oil & gas & FMCG stocks while realty and metal stocks witnessed maximum selling activity.
Asian markets finished mixed as of the most recent closing prices. The Hang Seng gained 0.39%, while the Shanghai Composite fell 0.53%. European markets are mixed today. The DAX is up 0.63% while the CAC 40 gains 0.56%. The FTSE 100 is off 0.31%.
The rupee was trading at 66.86 against the US$ in the afternoon session. Oil prices were trading at US$ 41.62 at the time of writing.
National Aluminium Company (Nalco) is reportedly aiming to reduce cost of aluminum production by around 9%. In this regard, the company will bring new energy efficient technology and ramp up metal output through brown field expansion.
The strategy centers on two things. First, the company is planning to add a new pot line near its current smelter plant location at Angul based on the latest technology and second, going for modernization of the existing pot line at the smelter.
For the new pot line, it has identified to use AP-Xe technology which would reduce the consumption of electricity, a key input for aluminum making, by 700 kilowatt per hour (kwh). Similarly, in the existing smelter, it has decided to overhaul the pot line by changing over to AP2x technology which is expected to bring down the energy consumption by 600 kwh.
In addition, the company is in talks with Iranian smelters for toll-smelting of its one million tonne of surplus alumina which is exported currently. The price of aluminum is six times that of alumina. The company plans to take advantage of availability of low cost energy in Iran by converting the surplus alumina into aluminum. These strategies together can cut aluminum output cost by 8 to 9%. Nalco finished the day down by 0.2% on the BSE.
Power stocks were in green in today's trade with NHPC Ltd and GVK Power and Infra leading the charts. Shares of NTPC finished the trading day on an encouraging note (up 1%) after the company declared Commercial Operation Date (COD) of 50 MW capacity of NP Kunta Ultra Mega Solar Power Project at Anantapuram. The company has declared COD effective from August 10, 2016 pursuant to testing and commissioning of power project.
With this, the commercial capacity of NP Kunta Ultra Mega Solar Power Project, NTPC and NTPC group has become 250 MW, 39,602 MW and 45,928 MW respectively.
Sentiments also boosted as the company's Power Management Institute (NTPC-PMI) and Gujarat Industries Power Company have entered into a Memorandum of Understanding for two years for continuous learning and training for enhancement of competencies and skills of the employees of Gujarat Industries.
Meanwhile, as per an article in The Economic Times, the government is finalizing a draft cross-border electricity trade policy to enable Indian power companies seamlessly exchange power with neighboring nations.
The move follows a meeting of Saarc energy ministers in September 2014 that decided to set up a cross-border transmission interconnection for the member countries. Power plants of Tata Power, GMR Energy and Satluj Jal Vidyut Nigam totaling 5,000 mw are under construction in neighboring countries.
India expects to be power surplus this year. The policy will help Indian power plants sell excess generation to other SAARC nations.
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