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Sales figures drive up 2-wheelers

Our Bureau

MUMBAI, Nov. 1

THE stock price of leading motorcycle manufacturers Hero Honda, Bajaj Auto and TVS Motor Company today gained on the back of good sales figures for October.

In today's trading on the Bombay Stock Exchange, Hero Honda gained 1.39 per cent at Rs 240.65, Bajaj Auto 4.82 per cent at Rs 442.30 and TVS Motor 2.19 per cent at Rs 393.90.

Brokers and analysts said the rise in the stock price of these companies was mainly due to the impressive sales figures for October. For October, Bajaj Auto registered a 21.6-per cent rise in motorcycle sales to 82,913 units as compared to 68,187 units in the corresponding period last year. Hero Honda sales figures stood at 1.65 lakh motorcycles. TVS Motor reported a 45.6-per cent rise in bike sales to 66,764 units as compared to 45,865 units in October 2001.

Mr Sachin Kasera, analyst from stock broking firm Pioneer Intermediaries said: "the sales figures for Hero Honda and Bajaj Auto are the highest for a month this year. This has led to some buying interest in the stock," he said.

Mr Kesera said in the next few months, Bajaj Auto would see faster sales growth compared to Hero Honda mainly on account of lower base. In addition, the launch of new bikes from Bajaj Auto would also increase its sales, he said.

But most analysts said the sales figures for October were mainly due to pre-Diwali purchases and the impact of monsoon on bike sales would be visible in the next few months.

UBS Warburg, however, in its report on the two-wheeler market said: "the impact would not be much, in our opinion, because two-wheeler volumes suffer only if both the summer and winter crops fail and we believe that's unlikely at this time. The drought shouldn't worry too much".

The foreign broking firm believed that over the next two to three years motorcycle sales will be supported largely by replacement, migration and benign financing environment.

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