Benchmark indices are trading marginally higher following a flat opening helped by the gains in financials and metal stocks.
At 9:40AM, the 30-share Sensex was up 61 points at 27,465 and the 50-share Nifty was up 23 points at 8,271.
In a move which is likely to impact auto and consumer durable stocks, the finance ministry has decided not to extend excise duty cuts on automobiles and consumer durables beyond Wednesday, December 31, in order to meet the Budget target of bringing fiscal deficit down to 4.1% of GDP.
Meanwhile, foreign institutional investors were net buyers in Indian equities worth Rs 277.92 crore on Tuesday, as per provisional stock exchange data.
BSE Metal index, up 0.7% is the lead gainer followed by BSE Realty index and BSE Bankex. BSE Auto index is down 0.6% and BSE Healthcare index is flat%.
Government’s decision to limit excise duty concessions for the automobile and consumer durables sectors till December 31, 2014 has brought pressure on auto stocks. Maruti Suzuki, Bajaj Auto and M&M have declined 0.8%, 1.3% and 1.4% respectively.
Metal stocks have rebounded in today’s trade. Sesa Sterlite, Tata Steel and Hindalco have gained 0.7%, 0.9% and 1.5% respectively.
Financials are largely trading higher. Axis Bank, SBI, ICICI Bank and mortgage lender HDFC have gained around 0.5% each.
In Asia, markets of Japan, Thailand, South Korea and the Philippines are closed for New Year holidays leading to thin trading in other markets. The Shanghai Composite index is trading higher by 0.8% despite Chinese HSBC manufacturing PMI data coming below 50 for the month of December, signalling a contraction in China's factory activity for the first in seven months. Hang Seng is up by 0.2%.
Overnight, US markets ended lower amid profit-booking ahead of the New Year holidays. Dow Jones Industrial Average ended down 0.3% while S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite indices lost around 0.5% and 0.6% respectively.