Indian stock markets continued to hold on to their opening gains on the back of buying interest in heavy weights over the last two hours of trade. Stocks from the consumer durable and realty space have gained the most, while stocks from the oil & gas and FMCG space have gained the least.
The BSE-Sensex is up by 179 points while NSE-Nifty is trading 51 points above the dotted line. BSE Midcap index is up by 1% while BSE Small cap index is trading 1.9% above yesterday's closing. The rupee is trading at 44.77 to the US dollar.
Hotel stocks are trading firm led by Oriental Hotels and Hotel Leelaventure. As per a leading financial daily, Hotel Leela is looking to aggressive expand its presence. The company plans to invest Rs 1 bn to upgrade its property in Goa (addition of 20 rooms) and open new company owned properties and take up management contracts. It may be noted that the company operates seven properties presently of which only one is under management contract. As per a company spokesperson, Hotel Leela is exploring management contracts to increase its presence across India. Furthermore the company is adding a new restaurant, spa and renovating rooms at its Goa property. A similar exercise is being planned for the company's Kerala property next fiscal. Presently, the company has a property coming up in Chennai and is building new hotels in Agra, Hyderabad, Lake Ashtamudi and Jaipur. Hotel Leela is also exploring international opportunities. Currently the company is building the brand Leela in global markets through advertisement, road shows and PR before going international.
Automobile stocks are trading firm led by Escorts and Mahindra & Mahindra. As per a leading financial daily Tata Motors is planning to invest GBP 50 m (approx. Rs 3.6 bn) in its research and development base in the UK over the next two years. The automobile company plans to hire 100 new engineers at the Tata Motors' European Technical Centre (TMETC). This will increase the existing workforce by more than 40% at the plant. It may be noted that TMETC's engineers work alongside WMG (Warwick Manufacturing Group) researchers in low carbon technology collaborative R&D programmes. TMETC has recently developed the Pixel city car aimed at European drivers on the Warwick campus. Also, Tata's Vista electric vehicle has been developed by them. Tata Motors has made an investment of GBP 85 m (approx. Rs 6 bn) in TMETC so far. The company management considers this as another step towards Tata's long term commitment to build and develop R&D facilities in the UK.