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Mid & Small Caps Fall; ICICI Bank Up on Rate Cut
Fri, 4 Nov 01:30 pm

Indian share markets continued to trade in red during the noon session amid continued sell off in global markets. Barring FMCG sector, all the sectoral indices are trading in red. Pharma and metal stocks witnessed majority of the selling activity.

The BSE Sensex is trading lower by 71 points and the NSE Nifty is trading lower by 34 points. Meanwhile, the BSE Mid Cap index & the BSE Small Cap index are down by 0.9% and 1.9% respectively. The rupee is trading at 66.73 to the US$.

According to a leading financial daily, ICICI Bank has cut its home loan rate by 15 basis points (bps) for new borrowers. Following this rate cut, home loans up to Rs 7.5 million for women borrowers will now attract an interest of 9.15% from the earlier rate of 9.30%. At the same time, the new rate for salaried class has been reduced to 9.20%, as against 9.35% earlier. The new rate is effective from November 2, a day after the bank lowered marginal cost of funds based lending rate (MCLR) by 0.1%. HDFC Bank too has cut its home loan rate by 0.15%.

Meanwhile, State Bank of India (SBI) also cut its home loan rates by 0.15% to 9.15% - a six-year low. The bank plans to cash in on the festival season and grow its retail loan book.

This rate cut by SBI could increase the pressure on other banks to bring down their interest rates on home loans, consumer, auto and other personal loans. The rate cut comes after the Reserve Bank of India reduced key policy rates by 0.25% to 6.25% last month.

Amid low demand for loans from big corporates, banks are focusing on growing their business from retail loans, especially home loans. As per RBI data, housing loans have shot up to Rs 7.86 trillion as of August 2016 as against Rs 6.74 trillion in August 2015, a rise of 16.7%.

Share Price of ICICI Bank was trading up by 0.2% at the time of writing.

Moving on to news from stocks in automobile sector. Share Price of Ashok Leyland is trading on an optimistic note (up 0.3%) after the company received approval from fair trade regulator Competition Commission of India (CCI) to buyout its Japanese partner Nissan Motors' stake in three Joint Ventures (Subscription Required) (JVs). The joint ventures are Ashok Leyland Nissan Vehicles (ALNVL) for making vehicles; Nissan Ashok Leyland Power Train (NALPT) for manufacturing power trains and Nissan Ashok Leyland Technologies (NALT), which is a technology joint venture.

Earlier in September, Nissan Motors had announced that it would exit the three joint ventures by selling its stake to Ashok Leyland. Post deal, the three entities would become wholly-owned subsidiaries of Ashok Leyland.

Ashok Leyland formally announced its plans to acquire all the shares of Nissan Motors in three of its JVs in September. These joint ventures focus on technology development and manufacturing of powertrains and vehicles.

The agreement will allow Ashok Leyland to continue manufacturing its flagship light commercial vehicles - Dost, Partner and Mitr - with a 1% royalty payable to Nissan.

Meanwhile, Ashok Leyland reported solid growth in sales, driven by medium & heavy commercial vehicle (M&HCV) segment. The company sold 12,533 units during the October month (the highest sales since March 2016), higher by 28% compared with 9,803 units sold in year-ago period.

M&HCV sales grew by 33% to 9,574 units while light commercial vehicle segment registered a 13% growth at 2,959 units on yearly basis.

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