After a muted start the Indian indices have moved firmly into the positive territory in early hours of trade. Other key Asian markets are all trading well in the green. Currently heavyweights in the Sensex are mainly trading positive with stocks from banking and FMCG space trading higher. However, stocks from IT and metals space are trading flat.
The BSE-Sensex is trading up by around 90 points, while the NSE-Nifty is up by about 32 points. Strong buying interest is being witnessed amongst the mid and small cap stocks as the BSE-Midcap and BSE-Smallcap indices are both trading higher by 1.2%. The rupee is trading at 46.63 to the US dollar
Pharma stocks are mainly trading positive with Wockhardt and Bilcare leading the gains. Ranbaxy announced its 2QCY10 results. Revenues grew by 14% YoY during the quarter primarily led by strong sales from 'Valacyclovir' in the US and growth in other key geographies. Various cost rationalization measures along with strong revenues from 'Valacyclovir' led to a 16.4% improvement in operating margins. Profits however fell by 52% YoY due to absence of extraordinary income and forex losses of Rs 1.1 bn as against gains of Rs 1.9 bn in 2QCY09. The MD and CEO Atul Sobti stepped down from his post, with Arun Sawhney (President - Global Pharmaceutical Business) taking his place.
Oil & Gas stocks are trading strong with Cairn India and Reliance Industries leading the gains. As per a leading news daily, the top two players in the Indian airline space Kingfisher Airlines and Jet Airways collectively owe Rs 17.7 bn to the PSU oil companies for the four quarters ended June 2010. This works out to be 94% of what all private airlines in the country owe to the three oil PSU's namely IOC, HPCL and BPCL. Naresh Goyal owned Jet Airways has dues amounting to Rs 9.6 bn and Vijay Mallya's Kingfisher Airlines has to pay Rs 8.14 bn to the oil companies. This does not help the cash bleeding PSUs which were a part of the subsidy sharing mechanism until the petrol prices were freed recently. Although delay in payments do not add to the losses of the OMC's as interest is recovered on overdue payments it certainly worsens the working capital cycle. However, the OMCs have put the defaulting airlines on the cash and carry model as a measure to avoid delay in future payments.