After trading in the negative territory during post noon trading session, the Indian equity markets witnessed some buying activity and closed marginally in the green. While the BSE-Sensex today closed higher by 34 points, the NSE-Nifty closed higher by 15 points. However, Midcaps and Smallcaps were in demand today. Both, BSE Mid Cap index and the BSE Small Cap index closed higher by 0.9% and 1% respectively. Capital goods and Software stocks were the biggest losers today.
As regards global markets, Asian pack too closed weak. The rupee was trading at Rs 61.95 odd levels to the dollar at the time of writing.
Energy stocks ended the day on a mixed note with Essar Oil and GAIL being the leading losers while, Gujarat State Petronet and ONGC being the leading gainers. The recent hike in excise duty on petroleum products is likely to provide a much needed cushion to the government's kitty this fiscal. It may be noted that after a fall in crude prices which resulted in a decline in petrol & diesel prices, the government took the opportunity to raise excise duty on these products so as to shore up its revenues. The excise hike that came in on November 12 (excise was raised by Rs 1.5 per litre on both petrol & diesel) and December 02 (the excise on petrol was raised by Rs 2.25 per litre while that on diesel was raised by Rs 1 per litre) will fetch additional Rs 105 bn to the government this fiscal. A hike in excise will certainly help the government in plugging its revenue gap and meet its fiscal target.
Investment & Finance stocks have ended the day on a firm note, with Power Finance Corporation and LIC Housing being the leading gainers in the pack. PTC India Financial Services is of the view that conventional energy sources like renewable energy and wind energy will provide huge growth opportunities ahead. Hence, the company is focusing on these areas aggressively. In fact, 70% of the incremental sanctions for the company are from this space. The current sanction pipeline stands at Rs 70 bn. Considering the renewed thrust on renewable & wind energy, we reckon the company's strategy to focus on these areas will enable it to grow its loan book at a healthy pace going ahead.