The News International Team
03:30 pm Market closing: The market has ended lower. The Sensex was down 68.26 points or at 27940.64 and the Nifty slipped 25.45 points at 8357.85. About 1334 shares advanced, 1716 shares declined and 105 shares were unchanged.
Tata Power, Sesa Sterlite, ONGC, GAIL and Hero Moto were major laggards. On the gaining side were Infosys, Dr Reddy’s Labs, Bharti Airtel,, Wipro and Bajaj Auto. As a fall out of government increasing excise duty hike on petrol and diesel, BPCL and HPL slipped 4-6 percent each.
03:15 Result: Vedanta Resources Plc reported a 5 percent fall in first-half core earnings due to lower production and higher costs at its oil and gas and Zambian copper businesses, where the company said it was continuing to face challenges.
The London-based miner, which has most of its assets in India, said earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation fell to USD 2.1 billion in the six months ended September 30 from USD 2.21 billion a year earlier.
Vedanta said lower volumes at Zinc India, lower Brent crude prices, a higher share of profit on petroleum payable to the Government of India and a planned maintenance shutdown at Cairn India Ltd, its oil and gas operations, had also hurt the company in the first half.
The miner reported an 8 percent fall in oil and gas production and a 12 percent decline in copper output at its Zambian business last month.
2:45 pm Foreign holding for HDFC Bank? The long-pending proposal of HDFC Bank to hike overseas holding may be taken up by the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) in its meeting tomorrow.
HDFC Bank’s proposal is expected to come up for consideration in the next meeting, sources said. Late last year, HDFC Bank had approached the FIPB for increasing the foreign holding in the bank to 67.55 per cent from 49 percent.
If the proposal of the bank to raise foreign investment to 67.55 percent is accepted, it would exceed the cap of 74 percent, after taking into account parent HDFC Ltd’s stake.
The Department of Economic Affairs and DIPP (Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion) are of the view that promoter HDFC’s 22.56 percent stake in HDFC Bank is foreign investment.
2:36 pm Market check: The market has slipped further. The Sensex is down 155.84 points at 27853.06 and the Nifty is down 52.75 points at 8330.55. About 1254 shares have advanced, 1695 shares declined, and 91 shares are unchanged.
Oil & gas and realty stocks are dragging the indices. HPCL and BPCL are down 4-5 percent each.
2:20 pm Big news: The government hiked the excise duty on petrol and diesel prices by Rs 1.50 per litre. This means the review that oil marketing companies were expected to take up, which would have led into another price cut for both diesel and petrol on the back of softening crude, is just out of the window.
According to a notification issued by the Central Board of Excise and Custom (CBEC), basic excise duty on unbranded petrol will be Rs 2.70 a litre as against Rs 1.20 a litre. On branded petrol, the duty has been raised to Rs 3.85 a litre from Rs 2.35 a litre. The new rates come into effect immediately. Apart from a basic rate, there is special additional excise duty and additional excise duty on both types of petrol.
So far, there has been a cut of about Rs 8-9 per litre in petrol and Rs 6 in diesel prices from its peak. The development has come ahead of the fortnightly review, wherein the OMCs were expected to go ahead with Rs 1-1.50 cut, but now the situation does not change.
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The market is still consolidating. The Sensex is down 39.51 points at 27969.39 and the Nifty is down 14.30 points at 8369. About 1396 shares have advanced, 1504 shares declined, and 100 shares are unchanged.
Infosys, BHEL, Wipro, Hindalco, Sun Pharma are top gainers in the Sensex. Among the losers are Tata Power, Axis Bank, ONGC, HDFC and GAIL.India’s liquidity is expected to go into its normal state of deficit from current surplus, says JP Morgan.
Government will cut spending to meet fiscal deficit target, JP Morgan argues. Government will also build back its cash balances, it says. Deficit would preclude any large OMO sale, bank adds. Future RBI liquidity management will be mainly through FX forward interventions, it predicts.