Despite some selling here and there, the Indian stock market is holding on in positive territory in late afternoon trade, with a report showing a drop in trade deficit aiding sentiment to an extent. A fairly good rally in Asian markets and the firm trend on the European bourses are contributing as well to the market's positive dispaly.
At 20,385.70, the Sensex is now up 51.43 points or 0.25% from its previous close. The Nifty is up 19.15 points or 0.32% at 6072.60.
Tata Motors is trading firm with a gain of over 3%. Tata Steel, ONGC, HDFC, Tata Power, ICICI Bank and Sesa Sterlite are up 1% - 1.6%.
Pharma stock Dr Reddy's Laboratories declined to around Rs 2626 post announcement of results. The stock, which regained some lost ground subsequently, is currently down 1% at Rs 2651. The company has posted a consolidated net profit of Rs 618.42 crore for the quarter ended December 31, 2013, up more than 70% from a net profit of Rs 363.31 crore it had recorded for the quarter ended December 31, 2012. Total income increased from Rs 2888.47 crore for the quarter ended December 31, 2012 to Rs 3551.49 crore for the quarter ended December 31, 2013.
On standalone basis, Dr Reddy's Laboratories' net profit came in at Rs 623.17 crore for the quarter ended December 31, 2013 as compared to Rs 346.64 crore for the quarter ended December 31, 2012.
Among the other losers in the Sensex, Reliance Industries is trading lower by about 1.6% at Rs 808 following the Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal alleging the company is charging double for gas from its KG -D6 gas block. Kejriwal said that he has instructed the anti-corruption branch to file FIRs against Veerappa Moily, V K Sibal and Reliance Industries Limited Chairman Mukesh Ambani and others.
Hindalco, Hero Motocorp, NTPC, Bharti Airtel, Maruti Suzuki and Sun Pharmaceutical Industries are trading lower by 0.5% - 1.8%.
HCL Technologies, up 4.2% at Rs 1475, is the top gainer in the Nifty index. Jaiprakash Associates, BPCL, Ranbaxy Laboratories, NMDC and IDFC are trading higher by 0.5% - 2%.
According to the data released by the trade ministry, trade deficit for January came in at $9.92 billion compared to $10.14 billion in December last year. Exports were up 3.8% on a year-on-year basis at $26.75 billion. It was $26.35 billion in December last year, while imports were down 18.1% on a year-on-year basis at $36.67 billion. Gold and silver imports were down 18.9% at $1.72 billion (year-on-year), and crude oil imports declined 10.1% (year-on-year).