The Mint report for 29 October 2009

The Mint report for 29 October 2009

New Delhi: India’s biggest company RIL posted its second quarter results on Thursday. Net profits fell 6.41% to Rs3,852 crore compared to a year earlier. RIL’s total income rose 5.9% to Rs47,476 crore from Rs44,839 crore in the same quarter in the previous year. Analysts say that while the KG D6 gas block will be RIL’s most profitable asset for many years, it remains saddled with heavy government regulation and a gas supply dispute with Anil Ambani’s RNRL.

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Government run oil company ONGC posted a 6% rise in its net profits to Rs5,090 crore in the second quarter. The company said the impact of its subsidy burden on its profits was just under $15 billion compared to more than $70 billion last year. ONGC is required to partly subsidise the fuel it sells to government run retailers of petrol and diesel.

Methane could be a bigger culprit in global greenhouse gas emissions than previously thought. A new report in Friday’s issue of the magazine Science says many previous climate modeling studies underestimated the effect of methane because they underestimated the effects of aerosols, which increase the potency of methane. Aerosols are fine particles that are suspended in the air and the scientists say their calculations increase methane’s global warming potential by about 30%. Experts say the study could affect the position India in climate talks because the country emits significant amounts of both methane and aerosol particles.

Inflation rose for the seventh straight week. The wholesale price index went up 1.51% in the week ending 17 October compared to a year earlier. This is the most the index has risen since May.

India’s exports have fallen 13.8% in September to $13.6 billion. This is the twelfth straight month of contraction though the pace of decline has reduced since May.

Punjab National Bank posted its results on Thursday. Net profit for the second quarter went up 31% to Rs927 crore compared to a year earlier. Total income rose 14% to Rs6,076 crore for the quarter. While PNB’s loan book has grown by about 25%, its proportion of restructured loans has gone up to 5.8% of its total loan portfolio. In the first quarter this figure was 5.2%.

Mahindra and Mahindra results have also soared upwards. Net profits shot up nearly 300% to Rs703 crore from just Rs247 crore last year. The spectacular increase was helped by a sale of part of the company’s stake in Mahindra Holidays and Resorts through an IPO. But the company also said its volumes rose at 44% for the quarter, which is about double the industry rate. Mahindra and Mahindra makes tractors and also utility vehicles like the Scorpio and Bolero.