Despite negative macroeconomic cues, the benchmark indices in Indian stock market featured amongst the top gainers in Asia in today's trade. Sectoral indices across the board ended higher with technology and FMCG sectors leading the pack of gainers. However metal
stocks failed to evince investor interest due to mining concerns. While the BSE-Sensex ended higher by around 198 points, gains on the NSE-Nifty came in at 55 points. The BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap indices also closed higher.
Other major Asian indices closed a mixed bag whereas Europe is trading mostly in the red currently. The rupee was trading at Rs 49.03 to the dollar at the time of writing.
India's largest private sector shipping company, General Electrical Co. (GE Shipping), is expected to see a structural change in its business by the end of 2012. The wholly owned subsidiary Greatship India Ltd (GIL) is likely to overshadow the parent company in terms of assets value, even though the latter started operations in 2006. This, however, is part of a bigger industry trend, where shipping companies are increasingly changing their business plans and diversifying into newer segments, including offshore, logistics and even coal trading, as shipping demand is at an all-time low.
GE Shipping at present has a fleet of 35 ships with an average age of eight years. This includes 25 tankers and 10 dry bulk carriers. The current market value of these ships is estimated to be US$ 900 m. In comparison, Greatship has a smaller fleet of 19 and operates in three main business lines - offshore logistics, drilling services and sub-sea solutions. Its current fleet includes two operational rigs that are being deployed in India by the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation on long-term charters. But the company has a capex plan of US$ 450 m lined up for the next two years, which will take its total fleet size to 27 by FY13.With this additional capex, the company expects the market value of Greatship's asset to go upto US$ 1.2 bn. And considering GE Shipping has no similar investments lined up, the subsidiary is likely to overshadow the parent.
As per a business daily, given the pressure on volumes in India, Tata Motors will launch Tata Nano in Bangladesh next week. However, with a price tag nearly triple what it is at home. The least expensive no-frills Nano will cost 599,000 taka (US$ 7,900), as against Rs 141,000 Indian (US$ 2,870) for a basic Nano model in India. Both the Nano and other rival small cars produced by companies such as Maruti are significantly more expensive in Bangladesh as importers have to pay 132% tax on each car.
Petrol, diesel and gas prices have also risen sharply in Bangladesh over the past year due to rising global oil prices and the phasing out of government fuel subsidies as the Bangladesh economy struggles to rein in its soaring imports bill. The stock of Tata Motors ended 3% higher today.