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Realty, metal stocks lift the indices
Wed, 22 Dec 09:30 am

Asian markets have opened today on a mixed note. Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia are leading the pack of gainers. However, China and Indonesia are witnessing some selling pressure. Indian markets have opened the day on a positive note. Realty and metal stocks are the main gainers here.

The BSE-Sensex is trading higher by around 40 points (0.2%), while the NSE-Nifty is up by about 5 points (0.1%). Mid and small cap stocks are trading in the positive as well, with the BSE-Midcap and BSE-Smallcap indices up by 0.6% and 0.4% respectively. The rupee is trading at 45.26 to the US dollar.

IT stocks have opened on a mixed note. Tech Mahindra and Infosys have opened in the green. However, TCS and Wipro are trading in the red. As per a leading business daily, the minority investors of Mahindra Satyam feel that a merger with Tech Mahindra at this stage would mean a raw deal for them. In a recently held shareholders' meet, investors in the former have opposed any merger with the parent at this point of time. They feel that the company should be allowed to come out of the bushes completely before any such merger takes place. Only then would they get a fair deal. Otherwise the merger may turn out to be more favorable for the shareholders of Tech Mahindra, which would be unfair. The shareholders of Mahindra Satyam also feel that the company's share prices would appreciate once the FIIs start to invest, which they will once there is more clarity on Satyam's financials. Once this happens, they may get a better deal from the merger. While Tech Mahindra has stated that they would be looking to merge the two companies, it has not given any time frame or details of the same.

India's hunger for buying international commodity assets just got an extension. It's now the turn of the largest coal miner Coal India, which is looking to pick up a 10-15% stake in an Australian coal mine. This mine is said to be owned by another international coal major, Peabody Energy of the US. This plan is part of Coal India's target to import coal to help meet India's requirements for the black gold. The company's own mines, which are otherwise large enough to fulfill the needs here, have been operating below their full potential for the past many years. And that's the reason Indian power companies? and other consumers have had to import expensive coal to meet their requirements. Anyways, another report on Bloomberg suggests that Coal India, along with power producers like Neyveli Lignite is also looking to buy some coal mines in Africa. Coal demand in India is expected to triple in the next 20 years to 2,000 m metric tonne (MMT). India's current production stands at around 530 MMT, while imports last year stood at around 70 MMT.

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Feb 22, 2018 (Close)