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Commodity stocks bear the brunt
Thu, 28 Oct Closing

Showing barely any signs of recovery after the lull seen yesterday, the Indian indices once again closed in the red today. This was after a temporary bout of buying interest in select heavyweights. While the BSE Sensex closed lower by around 64 points (down 0.3%), the NSE Nifty lost around 25 points (down 0.4%). The BSE Midcap and the BSE Smallcap indices also lost around 0.6% each. While losses were seen across sectors, commodity and realty stocks were particularly at the receiving end. Despite reports of lower food inflation, concerns over rate hikes continued to cloud investor sentiments.

As regards global markets, barring Japan, China and India most other Asian indices closed firm today while European indices have also opened in the green. The rupee was trading at Rs 44.51 to the dollar at the time of writing.

Union Bank of India (UBI) declared its September quarter and half year results today. The bank posted a robust 69% yoY growth in net interest income on the back of 27% YoY growth in advances. The 19% yoY growth in deposits was also led by 18% YoY growth in CASA (low cost deposit) base. The bank has 28.2 m customers at the end of 1HFY11. The net interest margin too improved from 2.4% to 3.2% during the past 12 months. However, the bank did not fare too well in terms of quality. Its net NPA as a percentage of advances moved up from 0.2% in 1HFY10 to 1.2% in 1HFY11. The provision coverage ratio too dropped from 88% to 70% during this period.

Titan recorded a strong 34% YoY growth in its net sales during the quarter. This was largely led by a strong performance from the company's jewellery segment. This segment grew by 37% YoY during the quarter, and formed 73% of the company's total sales. The company benefited from a recovery in retail sales of its premium jewellery brand Tanishq. The company's second major business segment of watches grew by 21% YoY during the quarter. The management has indicated that it is focusing on making the company' watch brands as premium accessories and is working towards upgrading its price points and retail showrooms to match the same.

The company's second major business segment of watches grew by 21% YoY during the quarter. The management has indicated that it is focusing on making the company' watch brands as premium accessories and is working towards upgrading its price points and retail showrooms to match the same. Titan grew its net profits at a robust rate of 65% YoY during the quarter.

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