Television has always been the opiate of the American masses, but now it looks like the fog is...
Mumbai: Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) today reported a 27.8% growth in its net profit at Rs 4,923 crore for the July-September quarter this fiscal.
In the year-ago period, the company had a net profit of Rs 3,852 crore in the year-ago period, RIL said in a filing to the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE).
The company's total turnover increased to Rs57,479 crore for the second quarter ended 30 September 2010 from Rs46,848 crore in the same quarter last fiscal.
As on 30th September, RIL had a strong cash position of Rs13,636 crore.
Cautiousness ahead of the Reserve Bank of India's (RBI) quarterly monetary review, due next week, and the outcome of the US Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting that is also slated for the coming week, weighed on investors worldwide. The Indian market, being no exception to the global nervousness, witnessed a high degree of choppiness throughout the week.
Upbeat earnings reports of the previous weekend boosted the market on Monday, however, profit-taking after the indices touched the day's high resulted in the market paring some of the gains accrued earlier in the session. Although the market opened in the green, volatility ahead of the futures and options (F&O) expiry later in the week spooked the market on Tuesday. The indices extended their losses on Wednesday on unsupportive global cues and institutional sell-off.
The market ended in the red for the third successive day on Thursday with the key benchmarks settling below their psychological levels. The last trading day of the week resulted in a reversal of fortunes with the Sensex gaining over 100 points in the last half-hour to bounce back into the green and settle a tad above the 20,000-mark.
The market ended with a loss of 1% for the week ended 29th October with the Sensex losing 133.52 points and the Nifty shedding 48.35 points. On a monthly basis, the market tumbled 2% in October with the Sensex declining 412.70 points and the Nifty falling by 125.70 points.
Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) (up 4%), Maruti Suzuki, ICICI Bank (up 3% each), Cipla (up 2%) and Reliance Industries (RIL) (up 1%) were the top Sensex gainers in the week. On the other hand, Wipro (down 6%), Tata Steel, NTPC, Jaiprakash Associates and DLF (down 4% each) were the top losers.
Festive demand boosted the BSE Consumer Durables sector (up 4%) making it the top sectoral gainer during the week, followed by the BSE Auto sector (up 2%). On the flip side, the BSE Realty index (down 4%) and BSE Power (down 3%) were the week's top losing sectors.
Food inflation declined sharply to 13.75% for the week ended 16th October, falling by 1.78 percentage points from 15.53% in the previous week. This is the second consecutive week when food inflation has declined.
Experts said the impact of a good monsoon was slowly becoming visible on prices of essential items, as supply side pressure was easing after a good kharif harvest.
Growth of six infrastructure industries dipped to an 18-month low of 2.5% in September, prompting experts to say that industrial expansion will also be adversely impacted. The expansion of core industries slowed down primarily due to a dip in petroleum refinery and coal output.
Analysts said the slower pace poses a dilemma for the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), which is slated to conduct its quarterly monetary policy review next week.
The government is not considering freeing diesel prices yet, as the move will lead to rise in retail prices that will push up the already high inflation rate, oil secretary S Sundareshan said during the week.
The government had, on 25th June, freed petrol price from its control resulting in a hike of Rs3.50 per litre. Diesel prices were raised by Rs 2 per litre on the same day, and it was stated then that they will be gradually freed. A move to deregulate the rates now would mean a further increase in the price of the fuel by Rs2.87 a litre.
The government is likely to dilute its stake in seven more companies this fiscal, including 10% disinvestment in Indian Oil Corporation in January and SAIL's stake sale in February, to meet the target of raising Rs40,000 crore.
The public issue of PowerGrid is expected in the second week of November and of Manganese Ore India Ltd towards the end of November. That would be followed by Shipping Corporation in the first week of December, while Hindustan Copper's public subscription would open on the second week of December.
India's exports shot up by an annualised 23.2% in September, 2010, to a two-year high of $18.02 billion, but even faster import growth increased concerns over the country's widening trade gap.
In the April-September period of the 2010-11 fiscal, exports aggregated to $103.30 billion, a 27.6% increase over the year-ago period.
On the global front, Japan's cabinet earlier this week approved an additional budget to cover a new stimulus package worth about $63 billion to avert the threat of a "double-dip recession" as deflation and a strong yen bite.
The package, which amounts to around five trillion yen, will be financed by the extra budget, whose fate now depends on whether prime minister Naoto Kan's ruling party can pass it in parliament where it lacks a clear majority.
The US Federal Reserve is expected to announce its "quantitative easing" in its meeting next week. The additional stimulus is seen as a step to help the economic recovery.
The domestic market will have four trading sessions next week on account of a holiday-shortened week. The outcome of the RBI's policy review and the Fed's future stance on "quantitative easing" will guide the market next week.