The Indian equity markets continued to gather momentum on the back of persistent buying activity during the previous two hours of trade. Currently, stocks from software, metal and healthcares spaces are leading the pack of gainers, while those from the engineering, auto and energy sectors are trading weak.The Sensex today is trading higher by about 90 points (up 0.5%) while the NSE-Nifty is up by about 25 points (up 0.5%). Midcap and smallcap stocks are also trading higher with the BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap indices by about 0.5% each. The rupee is trading at 55.18 to the US dollar.
Auto stocks are currently trading firm led by Escorts, Hero Motocorp and Ashok Leyland. A report by the Hindu Business Line states that Mahindra and Mahindra (M&M), through its subsidiary Mahindra Reva, plans to launch an electric car - named 'NXR electric car' - by September. While the price of the vehicle has not been disclosed yet, the company's management expects the car to hit the roads by Diwali. M&M formally opened its electric car manufacturing unit in Bangalore on Wednesday and it believed to have a production capacity of 30,000 units. As per initial targets, M&M plans to start with an initial production of 6,000 units, while full capacity is expected to be touched in a period of three years. M&M acquired a majority stake in the Reva Electric Car Company in 2010 as part of its strategy to advance the design and production of electric cars worldwide. As per the management of Mahindra Reva, the company is working with the government on how to incentivise electric cars. It also added that the cost per km of using such a vehicle would be at Rs 0.50 to Rs 0.60, nearly 10 times lower as compared to that of petrol cars.
Textile stocks are currently trading firm led by Welspun India, Arvind Limited and Century Textiles. It is reported that the government has increased the garment export target by US$ 1 bn to US$ 18 bn (about Rs 990 bn) for FY13. This optimism is on the back of the recent announcements in annual supplement of the Foreign Trade Policy (FTP). Some of these include the market-linked focus product scheme which was extended till the end of the current fiscal for exports to the US and the European Union. In addition, the sops included interest subvention on pre-shipment credit. It may be noted these two market form about 65% of the country's total textile exports. In FY12, such exports stood at about US$ 13.6 bn, a growth of about 18% YoY. Further, while the decision of the Planning Commission is pending, it is reported that the government has recommended continuation of the Technology Upgradation Fund Scheme (TUFS) with an allocation of about Rs 159 bn for the 12th Plan (2012-17).