After hovering around Friday's closing levels for most part of the day, selling pressure in the final hour of trade led the Indian markets to close the day on a weak note. The BSE-Sensex closed lower by about 135 points or 0.5%, while the NSE-Nifty closed lower by 32 points or 0.4%. While stocks from the consumer durables space were in demand today, those from the power, oil and gas and metal spaces were amongst the key losers. Midcaps and smallcaps ended the day on a weak note as well with the BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap indices closing lower by about 0.1% and 0.7% respectively.
Stock markets in other parts of Asia ended in the red, while European stocks were trading weak at the time of writing. The rupee was trading at Rs 62.14 to the dollar at the time of writing.
Auto stocks closed the day on a firm note with Ashok Leyland, Hero Motocorp and Maruti Suzuki leading the pack of gainers. Gains in the sector were seemingly on the back of companies announcing good sales volume numbers for the month of November 2014. Passenger car major Maruti Suzuki for instance reported a volume growth of 19% YoY for the month. Toyota Kirloskar Motor registered a volume growth of 19% YoY, while Hyundai Motor India reported a growth of 8.7% YoY. As for two-wheeler companies' volumes, TVS Motor reported a strong 36% YoY growth in volumes, with total sales volumes coming in at 220,046 units for the month of November 2014. Eicher Motors's two-wheeler business - with vehicles sold under the Royal Enfield brand - witnessed a volume growth of a 52 % over the same period last year. It may be noted that this growth in volumes comes in after a seemingly dull festive season wherein auto sales volumes remained muted in the month of October 2014.
Banking stocks ended the day on a flat note, with Indusind Bank and Axis Bank leading the pack of gainers while IDBI Bank and Federal Bank were amongst the top losers today. As per a leading business daily, the festive season did not meet expectations of the Indian banking sector as banks believed that customers were reluctant to splurge. The same conclusion has been arrived at by gauging car sales volumes as well as home purchases, which were quite dull in the past few months. As mentioned above, car sales volumes remained dull, falling by 3% YoY in the month of October 2014. As for home purchases, the inventory levels continue to rise in major cities such as Mumbai and New Delhi. As reported by Business Standard, inventory in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region has stands at 50 months, while inventory levels in the National Capital Region are as high as 83 months. A key factor that would have led to the same would be the expectations of lowering interest rates as well as real estate prices considering the oversupply situation in many markets - despite which prices have not been correcting.