The Indian markets have started today's session on a positive note. The benchmark indices opened above the breakeven mark and have stayed in the positive territory. Other key Asian markets are in the green with South Korea (up 1.3%) leading the pack of gainers. The US markets closed higher by 0.1% yesterday.
Currently in India, heavyweights from the BSE-Sensex are trading strong with realty and metal majors attracting investors' interest. The BSE-Sensex is trading higher by around 111 points, while the NSE-Nifty is up by about 27 points. Buying interest is also being witnessed among mid and small cap stocks as the BSE-Midcap and BSE-Smallcap indices are trading higher by 0.7% and 0.8% respectively. The rupee is trading at 47.1 to the US dollar.
Energy stocks have opened the day on a strong note. Gainers here include Indraprastha Gas and BPCL. As per a leading business daily, ONGC plans to intervene in the Cairn India and Vedanta deal. The company has the right of first refusal in some of the blocks operated by Cairn through their joint operating agreement. It is a partner in all three producing blocks operated by Cairn, besides five other blocks. Cairn operates the Barmer block in Rajasthan with a 70% participating interest. Its joint venture partner ONGC has the balance 30% interest but pays the entire royalty on the block to the government. Cairn is also the operator of the Ravva oil and gas field and Cambay basin. Barmer produces 120,000 barrels of oil per day, while Ravva and Cambay produce 37,043 and 13,527 barrels of oil equivalent per day. In fact, ONGC has stated that the deal cannot go through without its consent.
FMCG stocks have opened the day on a positive note. Gainers here include Godrej Consumer and Nirma. As per a leading business daily, Britannia plans to raise prices across its products by 5 to 10%. This step will help the company cope with rising input costs. It may be noted that rising input costs have been taking a toll on its bottom line in the past few quarters. In fact, it posted a 30% YoY decline in its net profit in 1QFY11, even though the topline grew by 25% YoY. Interestingly, several other FMCG companies have passed on input costs to consumers lately. HUL has raised its soap prices by 5 to 6%. Marico has raised the prices of its Saffola and Parachute brands by 3 to 5%.