Asian stock markets have opened the day on a mixed note with Japan (up 0.9%) and Indonesia (up 0.7%) leading the gains. However, markets in Singapore (down 1.8%), Malaysia (down 0.6%) and Hong Kong (down 0.6%) are facing selling pressure. The Indian share market indices have opened the day on a positive note. Stocks in the auto and consumer durables space are leading the gains. However, power stocks are trading in the red.
The Sensex today is up by around 61 points (0.3%), while the NSE-Nifty is up by around 18 point (0.3%). Mid and small cap stocks are also trading in the green with the BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap indices up by around 0.4% and 0.3% respectively. The rupee is currently trading at Rs 61.73 to the US dollar.
Auto stocks have opened the day on a firm note with Tata Motors, TVS Motor Company and Hero MotoCorp leading the gains. As per a leading financial daily, leading utility vehicle maker Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) is aiming to register a growth rate of 20% during the current financial year as it expects demand for pick-up (load) vehicles, where it has a significant presence, to lead the growth in the auto sector. Given the good rainfall this year, the company expects semi-urban demand to drive growth in this segment. In the pick-up segment, the company sold 103,000 units during the financial year FY13 as against 73,000 in FY12. In the current fiscal so far the company has sold 55,000 units. It must be noted that the total market size of the pick-up segment is 200,000 units and M&M commands 58% market share in the segment.
PSU bank stocks have also opened the day on a mixed note with Bank of Baroda, Oriental Bank of Commerce and Bank of India leading the losses. However, Syndicate Bank, Vijaya Bank and Bank of Maharashtra are trading firm. In a bid to provide a boost to the economy during the festive season, the government has said that PSU banks will soon provide cheaper credit to fund consumption of consumer goods such as TVs, refrigerators, motorcycles and scooters. As per a leading financial daily, the scheme could be extended to other items later. With this initiative the government aims to provide stimulus to capacity addition, production and employment. In order to help PSU banks lower interest rates on select consumer goods, the government is planning to enhance the capital support to banks from the budgeted Rs 140 bn.
It must be noted that the growth of the Indian economy has been slowing down. During the first quarter of the financial year 2013-14 (FY14), GDP growth stood at 4.4%, the lowest since 2009.