Backed by a strong buying sentiment in index-heavyweights, Indian share markets continued to soar higher in the post-noon trading session. All the sectoral indices are trading in the green with metal, capital goods and banking stocks being the biggest gainers.
Majority of the food stocks are trading in the green, with Golden Tobacco and ITC being the major gainers. Ruchi Soya and VST Industries are among the few stocks trading in the red. As per a leading financial daily, ITC has announced that it has received board approval for the merger of the safety matches and forestry businesses, of its subsidiary Wimco, with itself. ITC has a 98.2% ownership in Wimco. The company's safety match business has been in rough weather due to steep rise in cost of raw materials such as wood, splints, paperboard and key chemicals. Moreover, ITC's safety-match business being mechanized is taxed at a higher rate as compared to the non-mechanized sector. In FY12, Wimco had posted a net loss of Rs 459.9 m on net sales of Rs.1696.9 m. Reportedly, the subsidiary turned around in FY13 posting a profit of Rs 19 m.
Most of the MNC pharma Stocks are trading in green, with Merck and GSK Pharma being the leading gainers. As per the financial daily, the Government of India (GOI) has countered Novartis' claims on the India's patent practices. The company had alleged that India has discriminatory patent practices. The government has said that the global companies including Novartis have benefitted from the country's patent laws. Commerce Secretary S R Rao has said in a letter to Novartis AG CEO Joseph Jimenez, that around 80% of the registered patents are attributed to non-Indians. Some time back, Novartis CEO in his letter to commerce secretary and industry ministry had alleged that India's intellectual property (IP) protection environment is worsening. It accused that the Indian government is following discriminatory practices in several sectors including pharmaceuticals.