Asian stock markets have opened the day on a mixed note with Malaysia (down 0.2%) and Singapore (down 0.1%) leading the losses. However, markets in Japan (up 1%) and Hong Kong (up 0.3%) are trading firm. The Indian share market indices have opened the day on a positive note. Stocks in the realty and information technology space are leading the gains. However, FMCG stocks are trading weak.
The Sensex today is up by around 38 points (0.2%), while the NSE-Nifty is up by around 8 points (0.1%). Mid and small cap stocks are also trading in the green with the BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap indices up by around 0.8% and 0.7% respectively. The rupee is currently trading at Rs 61.62 to the US dollar.
Mining stocks have opened the day on a mixed note with Sesa Sterlite and National Mineral Development Corporation (NMDC) leading the losses. However, Gujarat NRE Coke and Hindustan Zinc are trading firm. State-run coal mining giant Coal India Ltd (CIL) has announced its provisional production and offtake data for the month of October 2013. During the month, the company reported coal production of 35 million tonnes of coal as against the production target of 40.82 million tonnes. In other words, the company managed to achieve 85.8% of its production target for the month. CIL fell short on the offtake front as well. It reported coal offtake of 35.51 million tonnes against the target of 41.55 million tonnes. The company achieved 85.5% of its offtake target for the month. The company had suffered production loss during the month on account of Cyclone Phailin which had adversely impacted key coal producing states such as West Bengal, Odisha and Jharkhand.
Private bank stocks have opened the day on a mixed note with IndusInd Bank, Yes Bank and HDFC Bank leading the losses. However, City Union Bank, Karnataka Bank and Development Credit Bank (DCB) are trading firm. As per a leading financial daily, India's second largest private sector lender HDFC Bank has increased its base rate by 20 basis points (0.2%) to 10% recently. HDFC Bank is the first bank to have increased the base rate after the RBI raised its benchmark repo rate by 25 basis points (0.25%) on October 29. It must be noted that base rate is the minimum lending rate below which banks are not permitted to lend. The private sector lender's rate hike is seen as a move to align it rates with its private sector peers. It is worth noting that ICICI Bank's base rate also stands at 10%. Following HDFC Bank's move, India's leading public sector lender State Bank of India (SBI) has also raised its base rate by 20 basis (0.2%) points to 10%. The rate hikes are expected to increase EMIs for home, car and personal loans. However, the rate hike by these two banks is unlikely to be followed by a round of rate hikes across banks.