Share prices continue to be listless: Wednesday Closing Report
Moneylife Digital Team 09 March 2011

As expected, the market was directionless. We will soon a see big move coming, though

The markets opened in positive terrain supported by strong Asian markets and easing of political tensions within the government. Rate-sensitive sectors like banking, realty, metal and capital goods led early gains. Choppy trade followed with the indices moving into the red in mid-morning trade.

Feeble recovery attempts were thwarted by selling pressure, with the indices consolidating the gains of the last few trading sessions and ending almost flat today.

The Sensex opened with a gap up of 83 points at 18,523 and the Nifty opened 22 points up at 5,542, on weaker oil prices. They hit intra-day highs early in the trading session, but soon witnessed a falling trend. The intra-day highs of the Sensex and Nifty were 18,583 and 5,563. By noon the indices hit their intra-day lows of 18,304 and 5,477, respectively. The market rose later in the day. By the end of the session the Sensex was up 30 points at 18,470, while the Nifty was 10 points up at 5,531. The advance-decline ratio on the National Stock Exchange was 959:618.

The market breadth on the key indices was almost equal. The Sensex closed with 16 gainers and 14 losers, and the Nifty headed home with 26 stocks in the green and 24 declining stocks. The broader indices outperformed the Sensex today. The BSE Mid-cap index gained 0.65% and the BSE Small-cap index rose 0.82%.

Even though trade lacked direction, there were only two losers in the sectoral space. The BSE Realty index (up 1.74%), BSE Consumer Durables (up 0.88%), BSE Auto (up 0.72%), BSE Power (up 0.48%) and BSE Capital Goods (up 0.40%) were the top gainers, while BSE Healthcare (down 0.36%) and BSE IT (down 0.14%) were the losers.

Reliance Communications (up 9.36%), Reliance Infrastructure (up 2.37%), Bajaj Auto (up 2.27%), DLF (up 1.33%) and ICICI Bank (up 1.24%) were the main gainers on the Sensex. On the other hand, Cipla (down 1.74%), Sterlite Industries (down 1.19%), NTPC (down 1.03%), Jindal Steel (down 0.69%) and Hindustan Unilever (down 0.66%) ended at the bottom of the Sensex list.

Domestic passenger car sales touched a record 1,89,008 units in February this year, a growth of 22.63% vis-à-vis the figure for the month a year ago, as customers advanced their purchases fearing a possible excise duty hike in the Union Budget.

According to figures released by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM), February sales bettered the previous high of 1,84,332 units achieved in January this year.

Markets in Asia, with the exception of the Straits Times, settled in the green on easing of crude prices and news of a rise in machinery orders in Japan, an indication that the recovery process is still strong. Banking stocks in China advanced, following media reports that the country's apex bank had reversed a punitive increase in reserve requirements which it had imposed on some lenders. However, fears of civil unrest spreading to Saudi Arabia kept investors on their toes.

Meanwhile, the Shanghai Composite gained 0.11%, the Hang Seng rose 0.42%, the Jakarta Composite advanced 0.51%, the KLE Composite was up 0.40%, the Nikkei 225 surged 0.61%, the Seoul Composite rose 0.26% and the Taiwan Weighted added 0.03%. Bucking the trend, the Straits Times declined 0.35%.

Back home, foreign institutional investors were net buyers of stocks worth Rs237.07 crore on Tuesday. Domestic institutional investors were net sellers of equities worth Rs140.46 crore.

The Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group-led Reliance Communications (9.36%) today signed final documentation with China Development Bank (CDB) for a Rs6,000 crore ($1.33 billion) loan facility. The loan facility is fully underwritten by CDB, and will be funded by a syndicate of Chinese banks/financial institutions including CDB. This represents the first and largest ever syndicated loan for refinancing spectrum fees.

Ipca Laboratories (up 4.4%) today said its formulations manufacturing unit at a Special Economic Zone (SEZ) in Indore has received the UK health regulator's approval for good manufacturing practices.

The company's new formulations manufacturing unit at the SEZ in Indore has been inspected and certified for compliance with principles and guidelines of good manufacturing practices by the UK Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency, Ipca Labs said in a filing to the Bombay Stock Exchange.

Camlin Fine Chemicals (up 6.93%) has successfully closed the deal to acquire Italy-based Borregaard, engaged in manufacturing fine chemicals. The latter is one of the five global producers of hydroquinone, a key raw material for the company's major product. With this acquisition, Camlin Fine Chem has been assured of steady supply of key raw material which at times remains in short supply in the global market.

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