All the auto stocks are trading positive with Ashok Leyland and Force motors being the biggest gainers. As per a leading financial daily, sliding yen is likely to benefit automobile companies such as Maruti Suzuki and Hero MotoCorp. Even auto ancillary companies will find importing Japanese machines, that are superior to the cheaper Taiwanese machines, more affordable. Companies such as Lumax Auto Technologies, Lumax Industries, Subros, Munjal Showa and Sona Koyo Steerings have higher proportion of Japanese imports and are expected to benefit from yen depreciation. The dual benefit of lower raw material cost as well as royalty outgo is expected to result in lower operating expenses for these companies. Maruti Suzuki stock is up 3.2%.
Majority of the steel stocks are trading in the green led by Tata Sponge and SAIL. As per a leading daily, Tata Steel has restarted producing iron ore from its mines in Odisha after a court order allowing them to operate until a hearing on 28th January. Tata Steel was asked to stop production from the two mines pending the renewal of leases. One other mine in Odisha is shut since May. The company mines 10 m tonnes of iron ore from the Odisha state. With court restrictions imposed on illegal mining in the past three years, the company was compelled to import iron ore for the first time in 107 years. The company is contemplating to open its biggest mine Noamundi with a 10 m tonne annual capacity in Jharkhand. The mine had stopped operations pending renewal of its lease. Tata Steel requires 20 m tonnes of iron ore annually to run its 10 m tonne steel plant in Jameshdpur. The company has purchased 3 m tonne of iron ore so far in FY15 mostly from overseas markets. However, high transportation costs remain a point of concern in case of imports. Tata steel stock is trading up 2.6%.