Kottayam: The Rubber Board today said it will provide financial assistance for formation of rubber producers' societies (RPSs) and self help groups (SHGs), reports PTI.
The scheme is intended to develop the small holding sector, which is responsible for the lion's share of natural rubber production in the country. The scheme will enable the socio-economic development of poor farmers and their families, an official spokesman said.
It is aimed at promoting a group approach for effective modernisation and improvement of the natural rubber sector, as an individual approach is not practical due to the large number of such holdings, he said.
The rate of assistance offered under the scheme is Rs6,000 for new RPSs and Rs3,000 for SHGs.
Such SPSs/SHGs would be provided 150 budded stumps and 200 metres of budwood at either 50%% of the cost finalised by the board, or Rs2,500 per RPS/SHG, whichever is less, to raise nurseries.
Fifty per cent of the actual expenditure, or Rs5,000, whichever is less, would also be granted to these RPSs/SHGs for conducting medical camps, he said.
The market continued its winning spree for the second day with the indices scaling a 33-month high. Institutional buying and support from its regional peers supported the rally, marking a splendid start of the new month.
The market opened in the positive terrain this morning, supported by cues from its Asian counterparts. The benchmarks gained momentum as the day progressed on the back of buying interest in heavyweights, particularly Sterlite Industries, after the Supreme Court stayed the Madras High Court interim order for closure of the company's Tuticorin copper smelter plant. The market scaled a 33-month high on across-the-board buying but closed off the day's high.
The Sensex settled at 20,445, up 375.92 points (1.87%), off its intraday high of 20,475 and a low of 20,094. The Nifty ended at 6,143, a gain of 113.45 points (1.88%). The index touched a high of 6,153 and a low of 6,030, mid-session.
The market breadth reacted in line with the gains today - the Sensex ended with 27 gainers and two stocks in the declining list while the Nifty had 45 advancing stocks and five ended in the red. The broader indices also had a field day; the BSE Mid-cap index surged 1.60% and the BSE Small-cap index advanced 1.54%.
The top performers on the Sensex were Sterlite Industries (up 5.13%), BHEL (up 4.29%), TCS (up 4.08%), Hindalco Industries (3.81%) and Jindal Steel (up 3.42%). There were only two Sensex losers today - Hero Honda (down 0.43%) and Bharti Airtel (down 0.20%).
The sectoral gainers were BSE Realty (up 403%), BSE Metal (up 3.87%), BSE Capital Goods (CG) (up 2.69%), BSE (IT) (up 2.57%) and BSE Auto (up 2.41%). There were no red ticks in the sectoral space today.
Markets in Asia ended higher on strong economic data across the globe. China's official manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index for September improved to 53.8 from 51.7 in August, while Thursday's private sector HSBC PMI showed a steady expansion from August. Hopes of further easing of the monetary policy aided gains in Japan. Bargain hunting by investors also lent a helping hand in keeping the bourses in the green.
The Jakarta Composite surged 1.31%, KLSE Composite added 0.19%, Nikkei 225 advanced 0.37%, Straits Times gained 1.07%, Seoul Composite was up 0.21% and Taiwan Weighted rose 0.08%. Markets in China and Hong Kong were closed for a local holiday.
India's exports grew by 22.5% to $16.64 billion in August compared to the same period last fiscal. Imports, too, jumped by 32.2% year-on-year to $29.67 billion in August, according to the government data released here today.
During April-August this fiscal, exports posted a growth rate of 28.6% to $85.27 billion on a year-on-year basis. Imports during the same period grew by 33.1% to $141.89 billion.
The US markets took a breather on Thursday after the recent gains, despite strong economic data. The Institute for Supply Management-Chicago's business barometer rose to 60.4 in September, beating analysts' expectations. The number of applications filing for jobless benefits fell by 16,000 to 453,000 in the week ended 25th September while unemployment rose to 9.6%. This apart, the economy grew at a 1.7% annual rate in the second quarter, revised figures from the Commerce Department showed.
The Dow fell 47.23 points (0.44%) to 10,788. The S&P 500 fell 3.53 points (0.31%) to 1,141. The Nasdaq fell 7.94 points (0.33%) to 2,368.
Foreign institutional investors were net buyers of Rs2,497 crore in the equities segment on Thursday. Domestic institutional investors were net sellers of Rs1,521 crore worth of stocks on the same day.
The Supreme Court today stayed the order of the Madras High Court directing Sterlite Industries (up 5.13%) to close down its copper smelting plant in Tuticorin, Tamil Nadu. A bench comprising Justice RV Raveendran and HL Gokhale stayed operation of the order of the high court till 18th October, the next date of hearing.
Senior advocate CA Sundaram, appearing on behalf of Sterlite Industries, submitted that if the high court order is not stayed, it would be a "great injury" to the company, as the plant would have to be shut down.
Infrastructure major Punj Lloyd's (up 3.27%) group subsidiary, Sembawang Engineers and Constructors, which is into engineering and construction in the Southeast Asia region has bagged a contract worth Rs614 crore. The order was awarded from PUB, the national water agency of Singapore.
Sembawang Engineers and Constructors will be constructing a new 60 million Imperial Gallons of Water (MIGD) at Lower Seletar at the junction of Western Road Link and the Setetar Expressway. The project is scheduled to be completed by April 2013. The Lower Seletar Waterworks project was awarded via a public tender by PUB.
Automaker Tata Motors (up 1.96%) today reported a 23% increase in its total sales during September at 64,668 units compared to 52,513 units in the same month in 2009.
The homegrown firm's total passenger vehicles sales in the domestic market stood at 23,877 units in September, a jump of 31% from the same month last year while exports grew by 77% to 5,057 units compared to 2,863 units in the same month last year.
With the global shortage in sugar production, prices are likely to remain firm over the next few months. Provided India can manage to surpass earlier estimates and export additional stock, the sugar industry has the potential to become a ‘shining star’ from a ‘falling meteorite’, says a brokerage
With overall global shortfall and de-control measures announced by the Indian government, domestic sugar prices are expected to remain above Rs30 per kg. Recent floods in western Uttar Pradesh (UP), the second largest sugar producing state, have also affected overall production and it is now expected to be lower than earlier estimates of 25 million tonnes (MT).
India is the world's second largest producer and the world's largest consumer of sugar.
"With the destruction of the cane crop in UP and, hence, lowering of sugar production estimates for the country, coupled with the export obligation of around 1MT till March 2011, we believe domestic prices would remain firm and could rule above Rs30 per kg in the medium-term," said ICICI Securities Ltd in a report.
On Thursday, buoyed by expectations of a bumper output in 2010-11 and a 40% decline in retail prices since January, commodity market regulator Forward Markets Commission (FMC) lifted the ban on trading in sugar futures, reports PTI.
The government had banned futures trading in sugar in May 2009 to control prices in the domestic market. Since February 2009, India has been importing sugar to meet domestic demand.
According to the PTI report, sugar output in 2010-11 (between October-September, the crushing season) is expected to rise to 25MT from 19MT in the current sugar year. India's annual sugar demand is about 23MT.
"We believe that the two-year (FY2010 and FY2011) scenario for sugar companies in India is strong with the domestic and global sugar industries experiencing a deficit. Thus, sugar prices are likely to remain high leading to hefty profits for these companies. The key risk to sugar prices though is the continuous intervention by the government," said Sharekhan Ltd in a research report.
The global scenario of sugar production is also not very encouraging. Brazil, the world's largest producer and exporter of sugar, is facing adverse weather conditions that could affect sugar production in that country. There is a 38% increase in China's sugar imports as floods have destroyed the sugarcane crop there. Moreover, the crop deficit in Europe and Pakistan is also increasing import demand from these countries. All these factors will lead to firm prices until February 2011 as no other country, except India, would be able to supply sugar. Exports from India, on the other hand, are also restricted to 1MT.
ICICI Securities said, "With global sugar prices at seven-month highs discounting the deficit across the globe, domestic sugar prices at eight-month lows discounting the expected excess production and the Indian sugar sector finally waiting to witness the long awaited decontrol, the outlook for the sugar industry has transformed from a 'falling meteorite' to 'shining star'."
Reflecting the upbeat sentiments, during 1st April to 30th September, the Moneylife Sugar Index rose 24% to 2,790.72 points from 2,254.17 points while the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) Sensex increased 13% to 20069.12 points in the same period.
During the first half of FY11, Rajshree Sugars & Chemicals Ltd shares jumped 57% to Rs79.2, highest among the ML Sugar Index stocks. Dwarikesh Sugar Industries Ltd and Shree Renuka Sugars Ltd rose 38% to Rs104.1 and 29% to Rs87.95, respectively. Shares of Bajaj Hindusthan Sugar & Industries Ltd, EID-Parry (India) Ltd, Uttam Sugar Mills Ltd, Dhampur Sugar Mills Ltd and Sakthi Sugars Ltd also rose between 27% to 12%, during the first half.
Surprisingly, Bajaj Hindusthan Ltd, the country's largest sugar and ethanol producer, has remained flat over the past six months. "We remain negative on Bajaj Hindusthan due to the large debt on its books and stretched capex plans in the power segment. We believe these capex plans would result in a further increase in the company's debt or an equity dilution in the future, which remains an overhang on the stock," ICICI Securities said.
Bajaj Hindusthan has lagged competition in terms of diversifying and enhancing its revenue and profitability profile compared to peers. "The company bought the largest raw sugar inventory of 700,000 tonnes in the industry, contracted at $467 per tonne, which translated into total cost of Rs28 per kg for refined sugar. Due to the decline in sugar realisations, we expect the company's EBITDA margin in refined sugar to be affected severely," said another brokerage in a research note.
Similarly, during 1st April to 30th September, shares of Balrampur Chini Mills Ltd (BRCM) failed to impress. During the first half, its shares rose 5% to Rs92.7.