The Mint Report for 12 May 2011

The Mint Report for 12 May 2011

Hero Honda plans to take its re-branding exercise into high gear. Mint has learned the company has decided to spend Rs175 crore on creating a new brand identity. The decision was taken during the 4 May board meeting. Hero Honda has been looking revamp its look ever since the split with Honda Motor. The Munjal family, which controls Hero Honda, wants to take the Honda out of the company name and promote the Hero group’s homegrown look instead.

Moving on, there’s good news for India’s economy. Industrial output in March has surged past all forecasts. The index of industrial production rose 7.3% during the month on a year-on-year basis. That’s in contrast to February’s revised figure of 3.7%. The March IIP is the highest in five months. Most analysts had expected it to stand at about 4%.

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Here’s how the IIP figures break up by sector. Manufacturing rose 7.9% in March and capital goods shot up 12.9%. Meanwhile, electricity generation increased 7.2% while mining nudged up 0.2%.

Also on the economy, exports have rocketed up in April. Provisional numbers show they increased 34.4% to $23.9 billion. Imports also expanded, shooting up 14% to $32.8 billion. India’s import bill is likely to go up because of high fuel prices. Crude oil imports alone accounted for $10.2 billion. On the flip side, merchandise exports have grown in double-digits over the past one year.

Indian markets tumbled on Thursday despite the good news on the economy. The Sensex plummeted 249 points to 18,336. And Nifty fell 79 to 5, 486.