Indian equity markets had a rather volatile trading session today. For the larger part of the day, the indices languished deep into the red as persistent selling activity prevailed. However, the later hours saw a rally in the indices with the result that they recouped almost all of their losses. While the BSE Sensex today closed flat, the NSE-Nifty closed lower by 13 points. The BSE Mid Cap and the BSE Small Cap index did not do well and lost 1% each. Losses were largely seen in FMCG and banking stocks.
As regards global markets, Asian indices closed mixed today while European indices have also opened mixed. The rupee was trading at Rs 60.92 to the dollar at the time of writing.
Power stocks closed mixed today. While NTPC, Power Grid and PTC India Ltd closed in the red, Tata Power and Gujarat Ind. Power found favour. National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) announced results for the first quarter ended June 2013. Standalone net sales declined by 3% YoY during the quarter, while operating margins expanded by 3.8% YoY leading to a 12.5% YoY rise in operating profits. Margins expanded on the back of lower fuel costs (as a percentage of sales). Flat other income coupled with higher interest and depreciation charges led to a slower 6% YoY increase in profits before tax. A higher effective tax rate further slowed down the profit growth rate to 1% YoY.
Ipca Laboratories also announced results for the first quarter ended June 2013. Topline grew by 25.7% YoY during the quarter led by growth in the formulations segment. Export formulations particularly witnessed robust growth of 47% YoY. Domestic formulations, on the other hand, grew at a slower rate of 12% YoY. This was on account of slowdown in sales due to implementation of the pricing policy as well as the stockiest strike in Maharashtra. Operating margins declined by 1% to 21.2% in 1QFY14, due to increase in overall expenses. Despite this, operating profits grew by a healthy 20.6% YoY. Bottomline grew by 67% YoY during 1QFY14 due to fall in interest expenses and increase in other income. The stock closed firm today.