Persistent selling activity led the Indian markets to decline further into the negative territory during the post noon trading session. Stocks from across the board are trading weak with those from the banking, capital goods and energy sectors leading the pack of underperformers.
The Sensex today is trading lower by about 130 points (down 0.7%), while the NSE-Nifty is trading lower by about 43 points (down 0.7%). Stocks from the midcap and smallcap spaces are also trading weak with the BSE Mid Cap and BSE Small Cap indices down by about 0.6% and 0.2% respectively. The rupee is trading at 54.47 to the US dollar.
Auto stocks are trading weak led by Hero Motocorp, Tata Motors and Escorts. The Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) released consolidated numbers of vehicle sales for the month of October 2012 recently. As per the body, domestic car sales increased by over 23% YoY to 172,459 units in the month of October 2012 (140,105 units in October 2011). As reported by a leading business daily, car sales grew at their fastest pace in 22 months. This is on the back of a low base coupled with the festive demand of the current year. Sales of motorcycles stood at 936,122 units, a figure higher by 6.7% YoY as compared to the same month last year. Total two-wheeler sales in the month of October 2012 stood at 1,285,015 units, up by 12.3% YoY. Commercial vehicle sales were up by about 7.6% YoY to about 66,722 units.
Stocks forming part of the BSE-Healthcare Index are trading weak led by Apollo Hospitals, Sterling Biotech and Aurobindo Pharma. As per a leading financial daily, Sun Pharmaceutical is set to acquire US-based DUSA Pharmaceuticals for a total cash value of $230 m. DUSA Pharmaceuticals is a dermatology company and is engaged in developing and marketing the Levulan photodynamic therapy platform. This therapy platform is approved by the US Food & Drug Administration (USFDA) for the treatment of non-hyperkeratotic actinic keratoses of the face or scalp. Apart from this, the company's BLU-U treatment for moderate inflammatory acne vulgaris and general dermatological conditions is also USFDA approved. This buy has given Sun Pharma an entry in to the dermatological treatment devices space where the company sees good growth opportunities. The company has raised its sales growth guidance for FY13 from 18-20% to 20-22%.