Most Asian stock markets have opened the day on a weak note with stock markets in China (down 2.3%), Hong Kong (down 1.8%) and Taiwan (down 1.3%) leading the losses. However, markets in Malaysia (up 0.7%) and Indonesia (up 0.3%) are trading firm. The Indian stock market have opened the day in the red. Stocks in the consumer durables and capital goods space are leading the losses.
The BSE-Sensex is trading lower by 85 points (0.5%), while the NSE-Nifty is down by around 25 points (0.5%). Mid cap and small cap stocks are also trading in the red, with the BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap indices down by 0.3% and 0.1% respectively. The rupee is trading at 52.15 to the US dollar.
Auto stocks have opened the day on a mixed note with Maruti Suzuki and Hero MotoCorp trading firm. However, Tata Motors and Ashok Leyland are facing selling pressure. As per a leading financial daily, India's leading passenger car manufacturer Maruti Suzuki has finalised a deal with Italian carmaker Fiat. As per the deal, Maruti will source up to 1 lakh diesel engines per year from Fiat. With this deal Maruti plans to increase the production of Swift hatchback from January 2012. A significant rise in petrol prices has boosted the demand diesel cars. While on the one hand the company is having a surplus capacity of petrol cars, it does not have enough capacity to meet the rising demand for diesel models. During the early part of November, 2011, Maruti hiked prices of diesel cars by up to Rs 10,000.
Pharma Stocks have opened the day on a weak note with Ranbaxy Laboratories, Aurobindo Pharma and Opto Circuit leading the losses. Pfizer's Lipitor, the largest selling drug in the world will lose its patent in the US today as the expiry is due. However, the big question is: Will Ranbaxy Laboratories be able to get a slice of that pie? Generic pharma company, Ranbaxy, has six-month exclusivity on the product, but with the company yet to resolve regulatory problems related to the manufacturing facilities in India, uncertainty remains over its exclusivity. Ranbaxy and its Japanese parent Daiichi Sankyo have in the past been confident of being able to launch their generic version of Lipitor in 2011. However, the company has not given any road map for the same yet.