Mumbai: Ho hum. The week has started like the past few. Oil prices again inched up on fears of a supply disruption in the Middle-east as the allied forced bombed Libya for a second night in a row. Consequently, Indian stocks declined marginally. Asian markets, on the other hand, posted gains mostly on hopes of a resolution to the Japanese nuclear crisis.
Sensex: 17839.05, -0.2%
Nifty: 5364.75, -0.17%
Hang Seng: 22685.22, +1.73%
Strait Times: 2983.51, +1.63%
Still, banking and pharma stocks led the gains among sectoral indices. The Bankex gained as credit growth is forecast to continue at a healthy pace and Bloomberg UTV reported that the central bank has forwarded its draft recommendations on new banking licences to the finance ministry. Realty and IT indices were the laggards of the day.
BSE HC: 5795.43, 0.15%
Bankex: 12189.54, 0.04%
BSE IT: 5955.91, -0.73%
BSE Realty: 2034.33, -0.92%
On to specific stocks, Tata Steel Ltd was up by about a percentageas the company raised $332 million or Rs 1500 crore through an issue of perpetual bonds. This should help the company avoid equity dilution.
Maruti Suzuki India Ltd fell for the third consecutive trading dayas investors seem to be worried about the stronger Japanese currency. The car maker sources about a fifth of its component imports from Japan and a stronger yen will hike royalty payments as well.
Tata Steel: Rs 601.50, -0.9%
Maruti Suzuki: Rs 1131.35, -2.3%
Valuations, based on measures including price-to-book and return on equity, need to narrow 15% for the brokerage to raise its “underweight” rating on the country (India), Ashish Gupta,head of India research, told reporters at an investor conference organized by Credit Suisse in Hong Kong today.
“Oil prices are likely to stay firm, which does not augurwell for the Indian market,” Gupta said.
Gupta repeated Credit Suisse’s forecast that the Sensex maydrop to 16,000 in coming months. The brokerage has a 12-18 month“fair value” prediction of 21,000, he said.
While concerns about Japan have largely receded for Indian investors, oil continues to be trigger Indian stocks.