The Indian markets lost further ground as the day progressed ending the day on a weak note. The BSE-Sensex closed the day with losses of about 216 points. The NSE-Nifty ended lower by about 62 points. Stocks from the metal, and banking sectors were amongst the top losers while those from the realty and FMCG spaces were in favour today. Midcap stocks ended the day on a flat note, while smallcaps ended marginally higher.
As regards global markets, Asian indices ended on a firm note. European indices opened on a weak note. The rupee was trading at Rs 63.76 to the dollar at the time of writing.
Auto stocks ended the day on a weak note with Hero Motocorp, Maruti Suzuki and Tata Motors leading the pack of losers. Despite Maruti Suzuki's sales surging bringing about a positive growth in the auto sales for the month of August 2013, the passenger car segment's volumes are expected to remain negative in the current year. Car sales jumped by 15% YoY during the month, with Maruti positing a massive 51% YoY increase. The latter was largely due to the base effect wherein the company's plant was shut last year due to a strike. Other segments of the auto industry such as utility vehicles and bans decline by 13% YoY and 19% YoY respectively. As per the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers, the trend for passenger vehicles cars has remained weak since November 2012. And it believed that it is likely to remain so at least till the end of the fiscal. What has helped certain players keep their heads above water in these troubled times, has been new launches. On the other hand, sales of two-wheelers have remained firm, with the same increasing by 7% YoY during the month led by the sharp increase in demand for scooters. The upcoming festive season will be closely eyed given that many are hopeful for a reversal in the subdued sentiments.
Power stocks ended the day on a mixed note with Tata Power, CESC and National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) ending higher, while JSW Energy and Reliance Power ended on a weak note. In an interview with a leading business daily, the management of India's largest private power player Tata Power stated that it is looking at opportunities overseas. The company has identified four key regions where it is still studying the markets and their dynamics. These regions include Africa, South East Asia, West Asia and the South Asian Association of Regional Co-operation (SAARC). As for the already planned projects, the company has achieved financial closure for some. Further, the company is believed to be seeking opportunities to acquire or tie up energy resources across the globe. As for things back home the company is still awaiting the Central Electricity Regulatory Commission's (CERC) decision for the compensatory tariff for its Mundra UMPP project. Commenting on the falling coal prices, the management is of the view that the weak rupee has offset the same. Nevertheless, international coal prices are on a decline largely due to coal production growing faster than consumption.