Piling on limestone

Prashant Jain-managed HDFC MF bumps up its holding in Orient Cement  

Soumik Kar

Just when one thought that a major overhang on cement stocks has been lifted as the Supreme Court allowed use of petcoke by cement players, the industry was hit by the government diktat to increase import duty on petcoke to 10% from 2.5%. The hike is expected to bring down the operating margins of cement manufacturers by 1% if the increased cost burden is not passed on to the end users. Notwithstanding the adverse impact, HDFC AMC is adding to its holding in Delhi-based Orient Cement. On December 7, 2017, exchange disclosures show that HDFC AMC bought stock worth Rs. 77.18 crore, raising its stake in the company to 7.27% from 5.03%.