The BSE-Sensex is trading down 60 points. The NSE-Nifty is trading down 16 points. The BSE Mid Cap index is trading flat and the BSE Small Cap index is trading up 0.7%. The rupee is trading at 60.73 to the US dollar.
Telecom stocks are trading mixed today. While Tata Teleservices is leading the gainers; Idea Cellular is leading the losers. As per news reports, India's largest telecom firm, Bharti Airtel is in talks to sell its tower assets in Africa. It is believed that the company is in advanced stages of talks with American Tower Corporation (ATC) and Eaton Towers in a possible deal that could exceed US$ 1 bn. Last month, the company had sold 3,100 towers in Africa to Helios Towers Africa. The company has about 14,500 self-owned towers remaining in Africa. The company has a policy to reduce the debt on the balance sheet by selling its African tower assets. Bharti Airtel is trading down 0.3%.
Majority of Indian pharma stocks are trading in green with Orchid chemicals and Elder pharma being the leading gainers in the pack. MNC pharma stocks are trading mixed today. While Novartis India is leading the gainers; Sanofi India is leading the losers. As per a leading financial daily, there have been an increasing number of cases recently, where the court forbids the Indian companies from launching generic versions for patented drugs. This step by MNC pharma companies is taken to protect their branded products, generic launches before patent expiry by Indian domestic companies had impacted the revenues of these MNC pharma companies. The launch of Gleevec generic by Cipla Ltd is a classic case. The drug belonged to Novartis India however the patent was denied and hence the company had faced loss of revenues. Hence in order to safeguard their portfolio, the MNC pharma companies are filing litigations against the Indian companies before the drug is launched by using various intelligent tools to figure out as to which company is looking forward to launch the drug. This is in contrast to what they did till a few years back, where they sued generic drug firms only after the copies were brought to market.