Opening Bell 13 December

Opening Bell 13 December

Mumbai: Global markets are going downhill again. The latest sell-off comes after Moody’s Investors Service and Fitch Ratings warned that last week’s European Union summit did little to ease pressure on struggling governments. The warning revived prospects of mass Euro zone sovereign ratings downgrade.

The warning spooked the equity markets. The S&P 500 at 1,236 lost 1.46% on selling in financial services stocks. Shares of the world’s largest chipmaker, Intel Corp., tumbled after the company reduced fourth-quarter revenue estimates.

Asian markets also opened on a weak note. Japan’s Nikkei at 8,535 is down 1.37%.

Back home, with economic activity slowing, it is increasingly becoming clear that banks are unlikely to achieve the central bank’s 18% loan growth target. According to a Business Standard report, annual growth in bank advances slowed to 17.7% as on 30 November. Banks would need to disburse an additional 4.5 trillion to achieve 18% growth for 2011-12.

Expect action in Strides Arcolab stock. The company is in talks with foreign companies and private equity investors to divest a key part of its business. The company wants to retain its injectables business while selling all other segments.

Keep an eye on Tata Teleservices stock. Tata Teleservices and SREI group are in talks to sell their stake in tower joint venture, Viom Networks, reports The Economic Times. Viom Networks has 38,500 towers.

HCL Technologies is confident that European debt crisis will lead to deeper client engagements and acquisition opportunities in the region. The company plans to expand its data analysis and cloud computing offerings in the region. Read the Bloomberg Businessweek report.

Coal India trade unions are asking for a 50% pay hike. The unions put forward the 50% pay hike demand at the two-day joint bi-partite consultative committee meeting at Bhubaneswar reports The Hindu Business Line.

Havells India is aiming to generate 120 crore worth of revenues from the home appliances business. The company entered the home appliances business in August this year. Over the next three years, the company is targeting a turnover of 300 crore for this business segment. Read the Business Standard report.

Keep an eye on Max India. According to The Economic Times, Goldman Sachs bought an additional 6.47% stake in Max India for 308 crore. With the latest acquisition, Goldman Sachs’ total shareholding raised to 15.6%.

To tap the growing rail-rolling stock business, BEML is looking to hive off its rail business into a separate company, reports The Hindu Business Line. In the last financial year, the rail business contributed 26% of the company’s revenues.

Hyderabad-based Taj GVK Hotels & Resorts is setting up a five-star hotel with 275 rooms at the Mumbai International Airport. The company will be investing 110.25 crore in tranches.

Expect action to continue in the stocks of Essar group companies. The CBI charged Essar group companies and some of its key executives for allegedly violating telecom rules.

Finally, an Albanian artist made the world’s largest coffee bean mosaic. The mosaic, made with 140 kg of coffee beans entered the Guinness World Records, reports Reuters.