The major Asian stock markets have opened the day on a mixed note with markets in Japan (up 0.8%) and Malaysia (up 0.2%) leading the gains. However, markets in Korea (down 0.6%) and Taiwan (down 0.5%) were trading in the red. The Indian share markets have opened the day on a flat note. The sectoral indices are trading mixed with stocks in the realty and software sector leading the gains. However, stocks in the auto and power sector were facing selling pressure.
In a key event, Fed has ended the quantitative easing (QE) programme thus ceasing the final US $15 billion of monthly bond purchases it had made in an effort to support the economic recovery . However, it has maintained the low rate pledge for interest rates for a considerable time after the bond buying ends.
Indian Pharma stocks have opened the day mainly in the green with Dr. Reddy's Laboratories Ltd and Torrent Pharma Ltd leading the gains. However, Piramal Enterprises Ltd and J.B Chemicals Ltd were facing selling pressure. As per a leading financial daily, Cipla has asked the government to revoke five patents that Novartis holds on respiratory drug Onbrez and has launched its generic version of indacaterol at a fifth of the price under the Unibrez brand in some parts of the country. Cipla has suggested canceling the patents on the grounds that the Swiss company has held them for six years without making the medicine locally or importing the required amounts. In its appeal to Department of Industrial Promotion, Cipla has demanded the Novartis' patents on the drug should be revoked under Section 66 of Indian Patents Act. The latter allows government to cancel a patent which fails to benefit the state or public.
Real Estate stocks have opened mainly in the green with Prajay Engineers Syndicate Ltd and Purvankara Ltd leading the gains. In a recent development, the Government has relaxed the rules for foreign investment in the construction sector by allowing inflows into projects spread over a smaller area. It is noteworthy that while 100% FDI in construction is allowed, the rules regarding minimum area requirement and exit of investors were restricting overseas participation. The minimum floor area requirement for construction and development has been reduced from 50,000 square metres to 20,000 square meters. For "serviced plots", there is no minimum limit now versus 10 hectares earlier. As per a leading financial daily, the move will result in more interest in smaller towns where the need of large top-of-the line office or residential complexes is limited. Further, the Union cabinet also decided to ease the rules for them to exit the project and repatriate profits. To protect the interests of consumers, there is a clause that will make it compulsory for Indian companies with foreign funding to only sell "developed plots". This will imply tracts that will have infrastructure including roads, water supply, street lighting, drainage and