If the Nifty closes well above 4,910, there maybe an upmove up to the level of 5,040 in the short-term
Better-than-expected results from State Bank of India and US futures moving from deep red to green provided the much-needed boost to the market in post-noon trade, ensuring a positive close for the second day. On a lower volume of 56.15 crore shares on the National Stock Exchange (NSE), the Nifty came off the lows of 4,789, (lowest since 10 January 2012). If the Nifty manages to hold above today's low and closes well above 4,910, we may see an upmove up to the level of 5,040 first. Improving economic conditions may take the market even higher. However, this upmove will be staggered and also as long as 4,789 is broken.
The market witnessed a gap down opening as unending European problems spooked markets worldwide. Fitch's downgrading of Greece by one notch to B- from CCC and Moody's downgrading ratings of 16 Spanish Banks led the markets in Europe and the US down on Thursday. Concerns about Europe led Asian markets lower in morning trade. In India, the benchmarks opened below their psychological levels-the Nifty opened at 4,796, down 74 points, and the Sensex tumbled 202 points to start the day at 15,868.
The rupee hit another all-time low of 54.85 per dollar in the late morning trade losing 38 paise on fresh demand for the American currency from banks and importers. The Indian currency resumed lower at 54.60/61 per dollar at the Interbank Foreign Exchange (Forex) market against the last closing level of 54.47/48 and dropped to 54.82/83, before trading at fresh all-time low to 54.85/86 at 1100 hrs.
Selling pressure in auto, capital goods and metal stocks led the benchmarks falling to their intraday lows in mid-morning trade. At this point, the Nifty fell to 4,789 and the Sensex dropping to 15,810.
Meanwhile India's consumer price index (CPI) based inflation was in double digits at 10.32% in April, mainly on account of substantial increase in vegetable, edible oils and milk prices. CPI inflation for March has been revised to 9.38% from the provisional estimate of 9.47%, government data indicated.
However, better-than-expected results from state-owned lender State Bank of India (SBI) gave the market the much-needed boost, pushing the indices higher. The country's largest lender posted net profit of Rs4,050.27 crore in the fourth quarter ended March 2012 against just Rs20.88 crore recorded in Q4 of the previous fiscal. Total income of the bank rose to Rs33,959.54 crore in the quarter against Rs26,536.84 crore in the same quarter a year ago.
The market emerged into the green in post-noon trade and managed to close in the green for the second day. The Nifty added 21 points to 4,891 and the Sensex advanced 82 points to settle at 16,153.
Despite gains in the market, the advance-decline ratio on the NSE was tilted towards the losers at 688:958.
Contrary to the market trend, the broader indices settled lower. The BSE Mid-cap index fell by 0.27% and the BSE Small-cap index declined 0.24%.
The top sectoral indices were BSE Bankex (up 1.75%); BSE Fast Moving Consumer Goods (up 1.14%); BSE PSU (up 0.79%); BSE Oil & Gas (up 0.58%) and BSE Metal (up 0.40%). The losers were led by BSE Auto (down 1.90%); BSE Capital Goods (down 0.53%); BSE Realty (down 0.14%), BSE TECk (down 0.11%) and BSE Consumer Durables (down 0.10%).
State Bank of India (up 5.08%); Sterlite Industries (up 2.38%); ICICI Bank (up 2.26%); NTPC (up 2.22%) and GAIL India (up 2.12%) were the top Sensex gainers. The main losers were Tata Motors (down 4.06%); Maruti Suzuki (down 3.31%); Bajaj Auto (down 2.63%); BHEL (down 2.09%) and Tata Steel (down 1.48%).
State Bank of India (up 5.82%); Sesa Goa (up 3.84%); Grasim (up 3.69%); IDFC (up 3.31%) and SAIL (up 3.25%) were the top five gainers on the Nifty. The stocks which appeared at the bottom were Tata Motors (down 3.87%); Ambuja Cement (down 3.52%); Maruti Suzuki (down 3.08%); Bajaj Auto (down 2.88%) and BHEL (down 2.35%).
Markets in Asia settled in the red as fears of a slowdown in the global economy on the back of the banking crisis in Spain and the political impasse in Greece. Export-oriented companies in Asia were worried as the developments in Europe would dent earnings, going forward.
The Shanghai Composite tanked 1.44%; the Hang Seng dropped 1.30%; the Jakarta Composite skidded 1.61%; the KLSE Composite declined 0.76%; the Nikkei 225 tanked 2.99%; the Straits Times fell by 1.54%; the KOSPI Composite tumbled 3.40% and the Taiwan Weighted settled 2.79%.
At the time of writing, the key European indices pared their losses and were marginally lower while the US stock futures were trading higher.
Back home, foreign institutional investors were net sellers of shares totalling Rs9.67 crore on Thursday whereas domestic institutional investors were net buyers of stocks aggregating Rs254.15 crore.
Union Bank of India has slashed interest on home loans to its base rate in select cases. The new rate of 10.50%, the base rate, will be applicable to both existing borrowers on floating rates as well as new ones. Loans above Rs30 lakh but under Rs75 lakh will be charged an interest rate of 0.25% above the base rate, while those between Rs75 lakh and Rs5 crore will have to pay a margin of 0.50% over the base rate. The stock rose 1.29% to close at Rs197.05 on the BSE.
City Union Bank has reported a 40% growth in net profit during the quarter ended 31 March 2012 at Rs71.98 crore as against Rs51.39 crore, a year ago. The bank's total income rose to Rs537.31 crore from Rs391.09 crore, an increase of around 37%. The bank's board has recommended dividend of 100% (i.e. Re1 a share on the face value of Re1 each) for 2011-12, subject to members' approval in the upcoming annual general meeting. The stock rose 4.62% to close at Rs 47.55 on the BSE.
While Bharti Airtel is introducing 4G services in select markets, it is also trying to focus more on 3G, which so far has failed to generate much revenues for the mobile operator
Bharti Airtel, the country’s largest telecom operator has slashed its tariff for third-generation (3G) services by as much as 70% for select plans. Separately, the company is launching its fourth-generation (4G) services in select markets. This shows Airtel’s new agenda is to focus more on data services and simultaneously increase subscriber base, rather than just adding new subscribers for its voice services. After all, it has paid thousands for crores for the spectrum. However, the question is what took the operator so long to go down this path?
It has been over two years, since the government auctioned 3G spectrum and broadband and wireless access (BWA). At the same time, I wrote that as fallout of 3G auction, call-based tariff will give way to data-based tariffs. I also suggested that after the 3G rollout, the possibility of massive increase in data-based services will give mobile operators an opportunity to create products and tariff plans with data-based services as the base product instead of voice-based services, thus unlocking new revenue segments.
However, not much has happened in past two years. Many mobile operators have launched 3G services, but either the tariff plans were not affordable for common mobile users or the data services lacked the required ‘punch’. The latter is true in most areas. Many subscribers complain that their 3G connection is slow and discontinuous. For example, while travelling on Central Railway in Mumbai, we often found that there is no network on the Sion-Kurla-Ghatkopar belt. If the basic mobile network is not there, then a 3G network cannot surely work.
While there are issues with continuity on the 3G networks, the tariff plans of most companies are too expensive. In India, about 95% people use pre-paid services and not many are ready to shell out more money under the pretext of 3G data services. For example, in Mumbai, while Vodafone charges minimum Rs102 for 3G plans which offers 100MB data, Airtel charges Rs41 for 140 MB data on its 3G network. MTNL, on the other hand offers 130MB free data on its 3G network for Rs99. Tata Docomo charges minimum Rs90 for 200MB data on its 3G network in the Maharashtra and Goa circle. These plans have a validity of 30 days.
Coming back to Bharti Airtel, during the fourth quarter of FY12, the company’s blended average revenue per user (ARPU) per month increased marginally to Rs189 from Rs187 a quarter ago. While the company undertook price hike of about 20% for on-net prepaid calls for all of its 22 circles during second quarter of FY12, in current market scenario the same is not possible due to persistent competitive intensity and un-sustainability of a tariff hikes.
During the quarter to end-March, non-voice revenue, which includes voice mail service, call management, Airtel Talkies and other value-added services like hello tunes, music-on-demand and Airtel Live contributed to about 14.4% of the total revenues in the mobile operators’ balance sheet. This may have prompted the company to look at other avenues, like data services for increasing revenues. The aggressive tariff cut for 3G services is nothing but an effort to garner more subscribers and money.
Although company has a very small chunk of revenue coming from 3G from its 9 million subscribers, reduction in data plan tariff would help to increase 3G subscriber base and play a volume game. All major mobile operators are spending huge money on 3G advertising to attract more customers. Airtel has taken a step to be in line with its peers who are also coming up with many attractive schemes like Re1 for downloading a video or song.
After introducing its 4G services in Kolkata last week, Bharti Airtel launched it in Bengaluru. The company is offering 6GB of data on its 4G—long term evolution (LTE) network for Rs999 per month. LTE, marketed as 4G LTE, is a standard for wireless communication of high-speed data for mobile phones and data terminals. The LTE specification provides downlink peak rates of 300 Mbit/s, uplink peak rates of 75 Mbit/s and quality of service (QoS) provisions permitting a transfer latency of less than 5 milliseconds in the radio access network.
In 2010, Bharti Airtel paid Rs3,314 crore for 4G license in four circles, Punjab, Maharashtra, Kolkata and Karnataka. It has been allocated 20Mhz of BWA spectrum in 2.3Ghz frequency band by the government. Similarly, the company paid about Rs12,000 crore for 3G spectrum in 13 out of 22 telecom circles.
However, in the 4G space, Bharti Airtel faces a very strong and cash rich competitor. Reliance Infotel, a unit of India's largest private company, Reliance Industries (RIL), is expected to roll out its 4G services by the end of 2012. Infotel Broadband, later bought over by RIL, was the only company to have won BWA in all 22 circles in the country. RIL paid Rs4,800 crore for a 95% stake in Infotel Broadband.
In a statement, Bharti Airtel said, “Volume based browsing rate on 3G is down from 10 paise per 10kb to 3 paise per 10 Kb. This will be applicable for 3G non-pack users with effect from 17 May 2012.” Airtel 3G pre-paid users can buy 3G high speed Internet service starting Rs45 for 150MB with for use within seven days to Rs1,500 for 10GB with a validity of 30 days.
Bharti Airtel is largest telecom operator in India and when it slashes tariffs for 3G services, other operators have no other option but to follow. What it will do to its profits and stock price, of course, is another matter.
Dr Reddy's Laboratories, Sun Pharma and Aurobindo Pharma received FDA nod to sell generic version of Sanofi Aventis' Plavix tablets in the US market
Hyderabad: Pharmaceutical companies, Dr Reddy's Laboratories, Sun Pharma and Aurobindo Pharma on Friday said they have received US health regulator's approval to sell generic Plavix, used in treating heart diseases, in the American market, reports PTI.
Dr Reddy's said it has launched clopidogrel tablets in the American market today after receiving approval from the US Food and Drug Administration (USFDA). Clopidogrel tablets are the generic version of Sanofi Aventis' Plavix tablets.
Dr Reddy's has received approval for tablets in strengths of 75 mg and 300 mg, while Aurobindo Pharma and Sun Pharma have received USFDA's approval for the tablets in 75 mg strength.
According to IMS Health sales data, clopidogrel tablets had sales of around $6.74 billion in the US market for the twelve months ended March 2012.
Dr Reddy's said its 300 mg clopidogrel tablets have been awarded 180-days of marketing exclusivity in the US market. The company said its product in 75 mg strength is available in bottle count sizes of 30, 90 and 500 while 300 mg strength drug is available in blister packs of 30 count.
Clopidogrel tablets fall under the cardio-vascular therapeutic segment and is recommended for the prevention of various heart ailments including peripheral arterial disease.
Shares of Dr Reddy's Laboratories were trading at Rs1,657.40 on the BSE in afternoon trade, down 0.27% from its previous close. While scrips of Aurobindo Pharma were up 0.99% on the BSE at Rs107.20, those of Sun Pharma rose 0.39% at Rs582.50 in the afternoon trade.