Nifty touches 8950, Sensex Midcap strong; auto stocks in focus
11:55 am Factory data:Indian factory activity expanded for a second straight month in February, while an increase in raw material costs pushed firms to raise prices at the fastest rate in nearly three and a half years, a business survey showed today.
The Nikkei Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index, compiled by IHS Markit, rose to 50.7 in February from 50.4 in January. That beat a Reuters poll median of 50.3 and was the highest level since November.
Readings above 50.0 signal an expansion in activity.
11:45 am Auto sales: Eicher Motors said it sold 58,439 units of Royal Enfield in February, a growth of 19 percent compared with 49,156 units sold in year-ago month.
The growth was largely driven by sales of models with engine capacity upto 350cc that increased 25 percent to 54,571 units in the month gone by.
The company missed expectations due to lower sales of models with engine capacity more than 350cc that fell 29 percent to 3,868 units year-on-year.
Motilal Oswal had expected the company to report 60,000 units sales.
Royal Enfield exports grew by 7 percent year-on-year to 1,702 units in February.
11:33 am IPO: Avenue Supermarts, the operator of supermarket retail chain D-Mart, has set a price band of Rs 295-299 for its upcoming Rs 1,870-crore initial public offering (IPO).
The issue will open on March 8 and close on March 10, 2017.
Avenue Supermarts has reserved 50 percent portion of public issue for qualified institutional buyers and out of which, 60 percent may be allocated to anchor investors.
The company said 15 percent portion of the total issue size is reserved for non-institutional investors and the rest 35 percent for retail investors.
Grey market brokers say that the issue is quoting at a premium of Rs 170-180 in the unofficial market.
11:20 am Indiabulls Real in focus: Indiabulls Real Estate’s arm has suspended work on its luxury residential project called Sky Suites that it was developing in Mumbai’s business district of Lower Parel. The project is being set up by Indiabulls Sky Suites, a subsidiary of IBREL arm Indiabulls Properties Investment Trust.
The company was forced to suspend work on the project after the Airport Authority of India placed severe height restrictions on the project, asking it to keep the height of the residential tower at 163 metres against 327 metres that the company had asked for.
Since the height restriction will limit the total area that can be built, the company is now forced to have a re-look at the revenue model of the project.
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11:00 am Market Check
Benchmark indices as well broader markets remained strong in morning, with the Nifty reclaiming 8950 level after Q3 GDP surprised economists and Donald Trump’s speech.
The 30-share BSE Sensex was up 216.76 points or 0.75 percent at 28960.08 and the 50-share NSE Nifty rose 55.05 points or 0.62 percent to 8934.65.
The market breadth remained strong as about 1622 shares advanced against 701 declining shares on the Bombay Stock Exchange.
The Indian economy grew at a surprisingly fast 7 percent in October-December 2016, from 7.4 percent in the previous quarter and 7.2 percent expansion in third quarter 2015-16 despite demonetisation.
Auto stocks were in focus as they started announcing February sales data. Maruti Suzuki shares gained half a percent after reporting 10.9 percent growth in February sales year-on-year while Eicher Motors too gained over half a percent as Royal Enfield sales increased 19 percent in the month gone by.
HDFC, ITC, Axis Bank, Infosys, ICICI Bank, TCS, Sun Pharma and HUL gained 1-2.5 percent while Tata Motors, Bharti Airtel, M&M, NTPC and GAIL were under pressure.
State-owned power equipment maker BHEL fell half a percent on profit booking after rising 6 percent in previous session.
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