Around this time last year, we had analysed the FMCG sector’s March 2022 quarter earnings. At the time, the sector was grappling with twin headwinds of a demand slump and rising input costs. Valuations were still expensive. Most FMCG players have declared their results for the March 2023 quarter.
This earnings season, the standout performers come from the banking sector. While private banks led the revival in earlier quarters, this time around, performance is visible all round – across leading private banks to old private banks and PSU banks.
Consumer durables is a category that stands between staples and lifestyle goods. This category has been hit on one hand by Covid-led lockdowns, and on the other by inflation eating into margins and hurting demand. The category has seen a more severe impact as it is neither buoyed by the non-discretionary nature of staples nor by the quick demand rebound that lifestyle consumption tends to see.
When markets are in a correcting mode, one sector that jumps to mind for its ‘defensive’ qualities is the FMCG sector. With their staple business, non-discretionary spending holds revenues in good stead. But FMCG companies have instead corrected about 20% from their October ’21 peak. Against the Nifty 50, they have been underperformers over the past two years. So, what gives?
Several sectors can benefit from the above measures, but none to any major degree. So, we will restrict this article to a select few sectors that can benefit; these being sectors that we are also focusing on or watching for opportunities.
While the Nifty 50 index has seen a sharp pull back in the last few trading sessions, there has also been a tectonic shift in how individual sectors have fared versus the Nifty 50. Sector rotation is clearly the name of the game.
As the Nifty scales new highs, there are specific sectors that are outperforming the index. In a rally such as the present one, if you have a positive outlook on the broad markets, it makes sense to focus on these sectors than look for contrary picks.