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Friday, March 6, 2009

Stock Market News, Financial News - Mar 6, 2009

Asia stocks slide as Wall Street hits 12-year low

By Eric Burroughs

HONG KONG (Reuters) - Asia stocks slid on Friday after a warning from General Motors' that it may need to file for bankruptcy drove Wall Street shares to 12-year lows and highlighted the severe troubles of major U.S. companies and banks.

World stocks struck a six-year low as Japan's Nikkei average fell about 3 percent in early trade, with shares in the country's big exporters and banks taking the biggest hit. (More...)

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Banks' retail lending model can't handle rate shocks, slump: IBA

By Financial Express Bureau

Retail lending model followed by Indian banks is either unsustainable or dependent on high economic growth. It was not designed to withstand interest rate shocks, or the slowdown in the country's economic growth rate.

A recent report released by Indian Banks' Association (IBA) titled 'Retail Lending Balancing Concerns in Difficult Times' has identified few weaknesses in the retail lending model of the Indian banking sector that need to be addressed. (More ... )

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Parsvnath launches affordable housing project in Lucknow

By Financial Express Bureau

In what can be termed as a major price correction, real estate player, Parsvnath Developers Ltd (PDL), which has is present across 50 cities and 17 states in India has launched an affordable housing scheme in Lucknow.

Branded Parsvnath Royale Floors, the project would be part of the group's integrated township called Parsvnath City and would target the economy-class buyers. (More ... )

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GSK to focus on RandD, new launches

By Kakoli Chatterjee, Indian Express Finance

GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare India is going ahead aggressively with its plans around development and launches of new products. In the next 12-18 months, the company will be launching new products in three categories in the health and nutrition segment, at an investment of Rs 10 crore upwards.

"In a couple of years' time, we are expecting the Horlicks brand to contribute around 15% of the topline of GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare", Shubhajit Sen, executive vice president GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare said. The company launched Horlicks nutribar about a week back in three flavours--cereal 'n' milk, choco crispy and nuts 'n' raisins. Priced at Rs 15, the nutribar is placed in the nutritional snack category and targets the 'on the go consumer' for out of home consumption. (More ... )

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Subhiksha to shut 20% of its outlets, enlarge board: MD

Indian Express Finance

Crisis-ridden retail chain Subhiksha said it will explore options to induct more independent directors into the company's board. It will also close down 20% of its outlets due to a liquidity crunch and will renegotiate with owners on rentals for another 30-35% of its stores. The retail chain, whose operations have come to a standstill in the wake of severe liquidity crunch, has already seen the exit of five board members in the last six months.

"The company is a board-managed one and will continue to be so. We will seek an even wider representation on the board so that we gain from the wisdom of all," Subhiksha Trading Services managing director R Subramanian told PTI. (More ... )

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Parle Agro, Dabur gear up to take on multinationals

By Lalitha Srinivasan, Indian Express Finance

In a bid to take on multinational giants, home-grown brands Parle Agro and Dabur India are drawing up aggressive growth plans to pump up volumes. Dabur India is entering into sub-contract manufacturing arrangement with local companies in order to increase its production capacity. "To counter the multinational competition, Dabur is gearing up to foray into the branded fruit drinks sector within a month," said Amit Burman, vice-chairman of Dabur India Ltd.

On the other hand, the Rs 950-crore Parle Agro Ltd is heavily investing on building up its retail visibility through various merchandise, to promote its water brand Bailley, which directly competes with Coke's Kinley and PepsiCo's Aquafina in the Indian market place. "Defying the economic slowdown, the Rs 85,000-crore Indian FMCG industry is steadily growing. With increasing competition between MNCs and swadeshi players, the sector will further grow this financial year," said an industry analyst based in Mumbai. (More ... )

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