Indian equity markets started the day on a positive note. Domestic markets followed global cues which turned positive on the statement by Janet Yellen, Vice Chairwoman of the US Federal Reserve, that the Fed would do whatever it takes to reduce the threat of another financial crisis. The market sentiment was also propped up with the RBI Governor calming investors' nerves over rupee depreciation and pegging the Current Account Deficit (CAD) at around U$ 56 bn. However, with WPI inflation at 7% in October compared with 6.46% in September this year, expectations that interest rates might ease any time soon might have ended. Auto and banking were the only leading pack of gainers. While the BSE-Sensex closed higher by 205 points, the NSE-Nifty closed higher by 66 points. BSE Mid Cap and the BSE Small Cap closed on a positive note.
As regards global markets, Asian indices closed in the green. European indices have also opened in the green. The rupee was trading at Rs 63.2 to the dollar at the time of writing.
The headline inflation number, the wholesale price index or WPI, has increased to 7% in October from 6.46% in September. However, it has come down from the October 2012 number of 7.32%. Food inflation has almost tripled since last October to over 18%. Vegetable prices played a key role. Overall, vegetable prices jumped over 78% while onion prices saw a whopping 278% increase. But it was not primarily food products which took the inflation to a higher level this month, but also the manufactured items, which occupy largest share in the inflationary basket. The prices of manufactured products rose for the first time this year and went up to 2.5% from 2.03%. Under manufacturing, food processing went up by 1.8% in October against 1.6% a month ago. Also, fuel and power prices rose 10.33% from 10.08%.
Tata Steel has announced its September quarter (2QFY14) results. Consolidated topline grew by 7.4% YoY on back of higher sales volume. Consolidated operating profit was up by 60.4% YoY while the operating margins increased by nearly 3.3%. On a consolidated basis, the company reported a net profit as against a net loss when compared to the same period last year. On a standalone basis, the company reported an increase of 8.4% YoY in net sales and 15.4% YoY in net profits. For the half year ended September 2013, on a consolidated basis the company reported a 2.2% YoY increase in net sales and 778.7% YoY increase in net profits.