Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Markets end with marginal gains; breadth strong

It was a very quiet day for the markets as they opened on weak note in line with its global peers and traded quiet but flat amid for most part of the day. Broader markets were in focus during todays trade and the market breadth was positive through the day. However, on the volume front, the markets disappointed once again.

Sensex ended up 2.84 points or 0.02% at 18663.16, and the Nifty was up 20.40 points or 0.37% at 5483.90.

Jindal Steel & Power (up 13.25% to Rs 2,586.35), Hindalco Industries (up 1.93% to Rs 181.95) edged higher.

Tata Steel, world's sixth largest steel maker, rose 1.87% to Rs 817.80. Tata Steel has reportedly lost its bid to buy the rights to iron ore reserves in Liberia to the Johannesburg-based Delta Mining Consolidated Company.

National Aluminium Company (down 2.26% to Rs 411) and Sterlite Industries (down 1.37% to Rs 836.30) edged lower.

Auto stocks declined. India's biggest car maker in terms of sales, Maruti Suzuki India declined 2.7% to Rs 872.35. Maruti Suzuki may reportedly launch a Rs 1.5 lakh car by end of this year or early 2009 to challenge Tata Motors' Nano. According to reports, it will have a Suzuki 660cc engine - as against Nano's 623cc - and wear a tag of around Rs 1.5 lakh on road (excluding insurance). Nano is expected to be Rs 1.25 lakh on road.

Tata Motors, India's top commercial vehicles maker in terms of sales, declined 1.87% to Rs 755.50. Tata Motors is reportedly satisfied with the progress of negotiations with US carmaker Ford Motor Company to buy British marquee brands Jaguar and Land Rover. The deal is expected to cost $2 billion.

Hero Honda Motors declined 5.01% to Rs 731.05, Bajaj Auto fell 2.24% to Rs 2,404 and Mahindra & Mahindra slipped 2.24% to Rs 680.55.

Banking stocks declined. India’s largest private sector bank by assets ICICI Bank fell 1.69% to Rs 1,189.80. The company has reportedly decided to split its home loans business between itself and an unit called ICICI Home Finance Company. The bank will fund home loans of up to Rs 20 lakh, with the unit handling the rest.

HDFC Bank declined 2.14% to Rs 1,515.10 and State Bank of India fell 1.9% to Rs 2,228.35.

Shares in software services exporters took a beating due to a gloomy economic outlook in the United States, which contributes to more than half of their revenue. Tata Consultancy Services (down 1.43% to Rs 962), Wipro (down 1.35% to Rs 458), Satyam Computer Services (down 0.32% to Rs 435.30) and Infosys (down 1.6% to Rs 1,618.90) edged lower.

Healthcare stocks rose. Ranbaxy Labotatories (up 3.78% to Rs 387.25), Sun Pharmaceuticals (up 1.39% to Rs 1,123.60), Cipla (up 1.81% to Rs 202.95) and Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories (up 3.13% to Rs 544.45) edged higher.

India’s largest private sector firm by market capitalization and oil refiner Reliance Industries rose 0.9% to Rs 2,616. The Bombay High Court will hear petitions on the gas supply dispute between Reliance Industries and Reliance Natural Resources on Tuesday, 5 February 2008.

India’s largest engineering & construction firm by revenue Larsen & Toubro rose 1.28% to Rs 3,855.05.

Among the Sensex gainers, NTPC rose 4.03% to Rs 223.10.

Reliance Communications declined 1.17% to Rs 677 despite Ministry of Communications & Information Technology, Government of India, granting approval to Reliance Telecom (RTL), a wholly owed subsidiary of the company, for providing CDMA services in Assam and North East service areas.

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