The major Asian stock markets have opened the day on a mixed note with stock markets in Malaysia (up 0.4%) and Indonesia (up 0.4%) leading the gains. However, stock markets in China (down 0.8%) and Korea (down 0.1%) have opened in the red. The Indian stock markets have opened firm. Barring metal and oil and gas, all sectoral indices have opened in the green with the stocks in the auto and banking segments leading the gains.
The Sensex today is up by around 132 points (0.5%), while the NSE-Nifty is up by about 39 points (0.5%). The mid cap and small cap stocks have also opened in the green with BSE Mid Cap index and BSE Small Cap index up by 0.6% each. The rupee is currently trading at Rs 63.26 to the US dollar.
Stocks in the Indian pharma sector have opened mixed with Wockhardt Ltd and Orchid Chemicals Ltd leading the gains while Panacea Biotech Ltd and Elder Pharma Ltd were leading the losses. As per a leading financial daily, Dr. Reddy's Laboratories Ltd's API manufacturing facility in Srikakulam district has received nine inspectional observations from the US FDA. The apex regulator has through Form 483 sought explanation on the nine observations that are said to be procedural. The company has suggested that it will respond to the agency within stipulated timelines with its remedial plans and start adopting the required measures immediately. The management has further said that the observations mainly relate to procedural and other compliance of the plant systems and that the production will continue in the normal course.
Mining stocks have opened mixed with Ashapura Minechem Ltd and NMDC Ltd leading the gains. However, Sesa Sterlite Ltd and Coal India Ltd were leading the losses. As employees of Coal India Ltd (CIL) threaten to go on five-day strike beginning January 6, the company has said that it is ready for the conciliation. The company is yet to receive an official notice from the unions. The call for strike has come at a time when the country is struggling with coal shortages and when around 43 thermal power plants are facing significant fuel deficit. The demands of the workers include stopping or withdrawing process of denationalization of coal sector and stopping disinvestment and restructuring of CIL among others. There is also a demand to extend National Coal Wage Agreement (NCWA) wages and other benefits to existing and prospective captive coal workers and to lift the ban on general recruitment.