The BSE-Sensex is trading up by 357 points while NSE-Nifty is trading 109 points above Fridays's closing. The BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap indices are trading up by 1.2% and 1.3% respectively. The rupee is trading at 51.97 to the US dollar.
Auto stocks have been trading mixed with Tata Motors, Maruti Suzuki and TVS Motors leading the pack of gainers. However, Bajaj Auto Ltd and Escorts are trading weak. As per a leading financial daily, considering the rising import costs of raw materials in the midst of weakening rupee, car companies are all set to pass the cost to the customers. Companies such as Maruti Suzuki, Toyota, General Motors, Honda and Skoda Auto are planning to increase prices by up to Rs 10,000 for small cars and up to Rs 25,000 for sedans.
This upward revision would add to the woes of already sliding demand for cars. In October, car sales suffered the worst year-on-year fall in a decade, slumping 24% to 1.38 lakh units. However, the car makers are left with no choice. Due to severe competition in this space, they have already cut the prices to the lowest possible levels. Therefore, there is no further room left to absorb the rising import costs.
Most of the shipping company stocks have been trading in the green with Mercator Lines, Essar Ports and Shipping Corporation of India Ltd (SCI) leading the pack of gainers. However, Chowgule Steamships is trading weak. As per a leading financial daily, according to shipping ministry estimation, the private investment in the port sector would be Rs 510 bn in the 12th five year plan (2012-17), a 6% drop as compared to Rs 544 bn during the 11th five year plan. During the current 11th five year plan, the private investments in the port sector were huge as compared to mere Rs 104 bn during the 10th five year plan. Investments were made during the 11th plan to create new capacity of 485 million metric tons (mmt) in major ports and 345 mmt in minor ports.
According to a leading rating agency, growth at non-major ports is expected to outpace that at major ports, with the former commanding a 51 per cent share of the total cargo in a decade. Indian ports are expected to handle one billion tonnes of cargo in 2011-12, two billion tonnes by 2016-17 and 2.4 billion tonnes by 2019-20. Coal and containers are supposed to me the major drivers in this sector for the growth, going forward.