Companies & Sectors
Residential sales in the south are picking up; Mumbai and NCR continue to languish

Despite increased prices in Chennai and Bangalore, sentiments are turning buoyant on back of speculations that there will be no further hike in interest rates. However, sentiments in Mumbai and the NCR continue to remain sluggish as there are no external triggers to change the price volume equation

Diwali may have been dim for the realtors, but looks like some cities are looking brighter with the New Year approaching. However, realty hotspots like Mumbai and Delhi-NCR continue to look gloomy, as vice president and business head of web property portal indiaproperty.com, Ganesh Vasudevan said.

“Hyderabad, Bangalore and Chennai are looking better. New properties have appeared, and Chennai has seen a healthy transaction volume in the last two-three months, and even in Hyderabad, after the mellowing down of the Telangana struggle, we are seeing an increase in number of registrations,” Mr Vasudevan said.
Bangalore, too, seems to have profited from the metro and other infrastructure projects.

An Edelweiss sector report says, “While sales volume at the pan-India level was steady, the Mumbai property market continued to post lacklustre sales. In terms of positive surprises, Bengaluru-based players such as Prestige Estates and Sobha Developers reported strong sales volumes while the biggest disappointment on the margin front was DLF.”

Though the September quarter saw decreased sales; post-Diwali the scene looks better for cities like Hyderabad, Bangalore and Chennai. “Flats which cost between Rs25-30 lakh, with area of around 1100-1200 sq ft and 2/3 BHK configuration are most sought after,” Mr Vasudevan said. In Chennai, prices have gone up by some 15%-20% year-on-year. The National Housing Bank released its ‘Residex’ data recently, which show that Chennai has seen a 9% q-o-q (quarter-on-quarter) increase in price, whereas Bangalore has seen a 1% increase. According to Residex, Hyderabad prices have seen an 8% fall since the last quarter.

Despite the increased prices in Chennai and Bangalore, sentiments are turning buoyant on back of speculations that there will be no further hike in interest rates. “Home loans turned expensive with the successive hikes. But now, people are coming to know of enablers like pre-payment and re-financing facilities; besides redevelopment properties are also seeing many takers. Moreover, at the end of the year, salaries are expected to be revised, so that has added to the positive sentiment,” Mr Vasudevan said.

But there seems to be little respite for Mumbai and NCR regions, which seem to be languishing. “While these home loan-enablers have buoyed up sentiments elsewhere, in Mumbai and Delhi the prices are too high to benefit from those,” he said. While in Gurgaon 2BHK apartments have a strong demand, the rest of NCR, including Noida, is faring badly. Residex says that Delhi has recorded a price increase of around 5% in the last quarter.

In Mumbai, prices have gone up 7%-8% in outskirts like Mira Road or Thane, and even the rental values along the eastern suburbs have gone up. Edelweiss reported that Mumbai property registrations continued to decline with the three month moving average (3MMA) as of October 2011 standing at 4,500 registrations, a 38% decline from a peak of 7,300 in December 2009. The Edelweiss report says, “We expect Mumbai volumes to remain muted as there are no external triggers to change the price volume equation.”

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IDFC appoints Jayen Shah as head of fixed income sales

Jayen Shah joins from Standard Chartered, where he was working as director & head, financial institution group origination—Capital Markets, South Asia

IDFC today announced the appointment Jayen Shah, 39 years, as head of fixed income sales in the fixed income & treasury function with immediate effect.

Jayen is an electronics engineer and has done his MMS in Finance from NMIMS. He is a CFA Charter holder from CFA Institute, USA and brings with him over 16 years of extensive experience in global fixed income capital markets and financial markets. In previous roles, he set-up and successfully ran fixed income, FX, commodity and derivatives sales business to financial institutional clients.

Jayen joins from Standard Chartered, where he was working as director & head, financial institution group origination—Capital Markets, South Asia. He has previously worked at the Royal Bank of Scotland, Rabo India Securities, ABN AMRO Bank and Kotak Mahindra Capital Co.

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Nalco expects 3-fold rise in exports

"We expect alumina exports to attain a peak of 2.7MTPA by 2014-15 and will soon revamp the existing facility

Expecting a three-fold increase in alumina exports to about 3 million tonne per annum (MTPA) in the next three years, state-run Nalco (National Aluminium Company) is set to revamp its port handling facility at Visakhapatnam.

"We expect alumina exports to attain a peak of 2.7MTPA by 2014-15 and will soon revamp the existing facility. For this, we have already invited expression of interest (EoI) from reputed global players by January 15, 2012, for replacement of ship loader," a Nalco official said.

The existing alumina handling capacity at Nalco's Port facility at Visakhapatnam is 1 MTPA, the official said. "The port authorities have now deepened the inner harbour so as to handle higher capacity Panamax Class of Vessels," he said.

Also, the new system after installation is likely to improve the dust mitigation measures for meeting the emission norms provided by Andhra Pradesh Pollution Control Board. Nalco has engaged Howe (India) Pvt Ltd, New Delhi as consultant for the replacement of ship loader. The design, engineering, supply and installation of ship loader shall be carried out on a lumpsum turnkey basis and tenders would soon be invited for it.

In the late afternoon, Nalco was trading at around Rs53.15 per share on the Bombay Stock Exchange, 2.71% up from the previous close.

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