Asian stock markets have opened the day on a mixed note with stock markets in Indonesia (up 0.4%) and Malaysia (up 0.4%) leading the gains. However, markets in China (down 0.5%) and Japan (down 0.3%) are facing selling pressure. The Indian share market indices have also opened the day on a firm note. Stocks in the healthcare and realty space are leading the gains.
The Sensex today is up by around 156 points (0.8%), while the NSE-Nifty is up by around 49 points (0.8%). Mid and small cap stocks are also trading in the green with the BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap indices up by around 0.5% and 0.6% respectively. The rupee is trading at Rs 54.44 to the US dollar.
Information technology stocks have opened the day on a positive note with Wipro, NIIT Ltd, Oracle Financial Services and Mahindra Satyam leading the gains. As per a leading financial daily, Wipro has sold off its vanaspati brand 'Sunflower' to US-based food multinational Cargill Inc. The divestment is in line with Wipro's overall strategy and marks the sale of the only food-related brand in Wipro's portfolio. The vanaspati business accounted for about 1% of Wipro Consumer Care and Lighting division. It must be noted that that in a joint statement both the companies have clarified that the "scope of the acquisition" defined in the agreement is limited to the product brand alone. The value of the transaction has been kept confidential.
Power stocks have also opened the day on a firm note with Torrent Power, Adani Power and JSW Energy trading firmly in the green. As per a leading financial daily, state-run leading power producer National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) is expected to sign a newly formulated fuel supply agreement (FSA) with state-run mining giant Coal India Ltd (CIL) within a month's time. The top executives of the two firms had met yesterday to resolve the differences over the new FSA. It is said that NTPC was reluctant to sign two sets of FSAs for different generating units at the same plant. However, the issues have been resolved and the company has now agreed to sign. Under the new FSAs, NTPC is expected to pick up more than 35% of the coal that Coal India will supply. The signing of the agreement will take about a month's time because NTPC will have to get approval from its board which is scheduled to meet on December 26, 2012.