Spending
Looking good, Man
What is common between Charles Dickens, King George, Alfred Hitchcock and Cary Grant? Could it be a barber?
 
There was a time when the rebels among men got facial treatments, pedicures, and exfoliations. Times have changed and today's rebels are the ones not 'taking care' of themselves. At least that is what the trends show in India's urban centres. When Shak Rukh Khan starts endorsing a men's fairness cream, it's a sure sign that change isn't just coming, it's already happened. How did India's urban men change so much so fast? One factor is the globalised flow of what is fashionable; kids in Nagpur and Nashik aren't completely unaware of Brad Pitt's Fight Club look. Eventually, when Bollywood picks up a trend, its already past its expiry date in the most affluent circles, but takes its time filtering down.
 

A few years ago, we saw a new phenomenon in India's urban centres, new salons and spas were opening all around, with intense branding and franchises. This was the time when barbers turned into 'stylists'. They were then followed by cheaper knock-offs and so on. Most of their customers were college kids and youngsters in their twenties, but these same people have now grown up and that seems to have opened up a new market. This brings us to the latest entrant in the men's grooming services bazaar. The world's oldest barbershop (called a 'tonsorial parlour' in Hanoverian times) just opened its first outlet in India. It is one of those places with a pair of proper nouns in its name. Truefitt and Hill, a 209-year old brand, comes with its own crest (not a mere logo) and royal decree. 
 
This new entrant is re-defining its service category in quite a few ways. High-end salons for men demanded their prices based on either superstar barbers, stylists if you prefer, or by the fact that these places used the latest in technology and products to set their men apart. T & H changes this in two ways. Their brand proposition is not about standing out. It seems to hint at the man carrying the weight of his personality without the crutch of a loud plume up top. Secondly, men's grooming comes as a perfected process with T & H. Over years of experience, the shaves and haircuts have become a process which by itself becomes a value proposition. T& H has invested in a service experience, from the chairs to the training of their barbers. The decor might lull you into forgetting that when you're done, you will step onto Linking Road and not St. James Street. Krishna Gupta, the Managing Director of Lloyd's Luxuries Ltd who has brought the brand to India, said that “We are looking to target young high-fliers around 30-35 years of age. Soon we will expand to three more barbershops within Mumbai, and follow with an expansion to 7 major cities in India.” 
 
These are interesting times for luxury retail in India and that is what Krishna says motivated his foray into men's personal care for this very first venture of his. He is 21 years of age. Many service based retail outlets have already warmed up to the concept of merging their core strength with merchandising. Starbucks sells coffee at its shops, and it also sells the beans, the mugs etc. In a similar vein T & H also hawks high-end products it services its customers with.
 
Can T & H spawn a new business category? One that may even act as a germ for a larger sprouting of such 'barbershops', salons, spas etc for men.The men's vanity market as it is called, stands at around Rs3,800 crore. Gillette recently spent huge money trying to convince men that they would be a lot more attractive with a nice clean shave. T & H echoes that sentiment with a 'Royal Shave' for Rs1700. “The shave is our signature service” says Krishna Gupta. The competition may soon hot up in this segment where being abreast of the latest trends is all that matters, but if you have been around for over two centuries, a timeless style perfected over decades stands with an advantage.

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Nifty, Sensex may suffer further decline
Nifty may find support around 7,470

The S&P BSE 30-share Sensex closed the week that ended on 13th June at 25,228 (down 168 points or 0.66%), while the NSE’s 50-share Nifty closed at 7,542 (down 41 points or 0.54%) for the week. We had mentioned in our previous week’s report that the market is highly overbought and fresh gains may not come in easily. After hitting a new high on Monday, markets gave up most of the gains over the next four days.
 
On Monday, the day's highlight was the optimistic road map laid out by President Pranab Mukherjee's for the new government. The speech highlighted among other things, the need for containing food inflation, reforms to enhance the ease of doing business, rules for allocation of coal, minerals and telecoms spectrum, and infrastructure development programme. Nifty closed Monday at 7,655 (up 71 points or 0.94%).
 
As we anticipated last week, we observed the indices losing their strength to move higher. Indian Meteorological Department said late on Monday that rainfall over the country as a whole for the 2014 southwest monsoon season (June to September) is likely to be below normal. Nifty closed at 7,656 (up 2 points or 0.02%) on Tuesday.
 
On Wednesday, after hitting a new life time high the Nifty closed in the negative for the first time after four days of closing in the green. Nifty closed at 7,627 (down 30 points or 0.39%). Government data showed the trade deficit declining to $11.23 billion in May 2014, from $19.37 billion in May 2013. Trade deficit for the first two months of this financial year declined to $21.32 billion from $37.04 billion during the corresponding period in the previous year.
 
On Thursday, the Indian market recovered the previous day’s losses and closed in the positive. Nifty closed at 7,650 (up 23 points or 0.30%). Markit Economics said India's industrial output in April rose to 3.4% from previous -0.5%, while manufacturing output increased to 2.6% in April from previous -1.2% over the year.
 
The annual inflation rate based on combined consumer price index (CPI) for urban and rural India eased to 8.28% (provisional) in May 2014, from 8.59% (final) in April 2014, as indicated by the data released by the government after trading hours on Thursday.
On Friday after range bound movement in the morning session, Nifty was pulled in negative. Nifty closed at 7,542 (down 108 points or 1.41%). Rising tension in Iraq which threatened to affect the oil supplies affected market sentiment adversely.
 
For the week, among the other indices on the NSE, the top two performers were IT (6%) and Pharma (4%) while the worst two performers were Realty (7%) and PSU Banks (6%).
 Among the Nifty stocks, the top five stocks for the week were HCL Technologies (8%); Asian Paints (7%); Grasim Industries (7%); TCS (6%) and Infosys (6%) while the top five losers were DLF (12%); BHEL (10%); BPCL (9%); ONGC (9%) and Axis Bank (8%).
 
 Of the 1,486 companies on the NSE, 661 companies closed in the green, 810 companies closed in the red while 15 companies closed flat, as compared to the previous week's close.
 Out of the 27 main sectors tracked by Moneylife, top five and the bottom five sectors for this week were:
 

Top ML index

 

Worst ML index

 

Software & IT Services

5%

Oil & Gas

-6%

Textiles

4%

Steel

-3%

Pharma

3%

Sugar

-3%

Hotels

3%

Refineries

-2%

Industrial Intermediates

2%

Real Estate

-2%

 

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Sensex, Nifty pulled lower on rising tensions in Iraq : Friday closing report
Weakening of the Nifty may be seen in days to come

The Indian indices witnessed a range bound session until around 11.45 am on Friday when the benchmarks were trading marginally higher than yesterdays close. The indices soon made an entry in the negative zone and saw a gradual slide down, ultimately closing in the red. Rising tension in Iraq, which threatened to affect oil supplies, affected market sentiment adversely.
 
The S&P BSE 30-share Sensex opened at 25,677 and moved from the high of 25,688 to a low of 25,172 and closed at 25,228 (down 348 points or 1.36%). The NSE 50-share Nifty opened at 7,668 and hit a high of 7,679 and moved lower the level of 7,525 and closed at 7,542 (down 108 points or 1.41%). The NSE recorded a volume of 132.96 crore shares. India VIX rose 5.09% to close at 17.7625.
 
The annual inflation rate based on combined consumer price index (CPI) for urban and rural India eased to 8.28% (provisional) in May 2014, from 8.59% (final) in April 2014, as shown by data released by the government after trading hours on Thursday. Within the consumer price index, food prices inflation eased to 9.56% in May 2014, from 9.83% in April 2014. The rate of inflation based on the core CPI, which excludes food and energy prices was 7.72% in May 2014, unchanged from the level in April 2014.
 
Hindustan Unilever (0.71%) was the top gainer in the Sensex 30 pack. Two senior executives have quit the modern trade division of Hindustan Unilever in recent weeks.
 
Hero MotoCorp (4.42%) was among the top two losers among the Sensex 30 stocks. Hero MotoCorp is planning to enter Brazil by 2016. It also plans to begin work on its manufacturing facility in Columbia in the next two months, investing $70 million.
 
Motherson Sumi (3.07%) was among the top two gainers in the ‘A’ group on the BSE, it was in news for planning to raise funds in the overseas bond market by issue of $500 million in euro-denominated bonds.
 
Jaiprakash Associates (8.30%), top loser in ‘A’ group on the BSE. The company has been in news in relation to involvement in talks with Ultratech Cement for selling off Jaiprakash’s cement assets.
 
US indices closed in the negative on Thursday. The retail sales rose 0.3% in May, half the growth rate forecasts were indicating. Americans' new claims for unemployment benefits unexpectedly rose last week.
 
Asian indices showed a mixed performance. Shanghai Composite (0.93%) was the top gainer while Seoul Composite (1.03%) was the top loser.
 
The Bank of Japan maintained record stimulus as Governor Haruhiko Kuroda strives to boost inflation that remains short of a 2% target. The central bank will continue to expand the monetary base at a pace of 60 trillion yen to 70 trillion yen ($688 billion) per year, it said in a statement today in Tokyo in line with estimates.
 
European indices were trading in the red while US Futures were also trading lower.

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