Money on the markets
A maturing market amid the mayhem
India’s benchmark stock index did reasonably well in the first half of 2010 as compared to its emerging market peers. The Sensex gained 1.4 percent during the period, and outperformed China’s Shanghai Composite Index and Brazil’s Bovespa which declined 9.6 percent and 26.8 percent respectively.
Shares in Reliance Industries, India’s top listed firm which has the heaviest weight in the index, barely changed during the period, but a Supreme Court ruling on a gas dispute and Ambani brothers reconciliation kept the company in focus.
Banking stocks performed well during the period, with the sectoral Bankex posting gains of more than 7 percent. Shares in SBI, India’s largest lender rose marginally, but private lender HDFC Bank jumped 12.6 percent during the period.
Among other sectors, oil & gas index rose 3.85 percent whereas the realty index was battered and posted losses of 17 percent.
Parabolic Drugs Ltd debuted on the BSE marginally above its issue price of 75 rupees on Thursday but later fell more than 14 percent in intra-day trade.
Shares in the counter ended 13.6 percent lower at 64.80 rupees with volumes of 7.8 million shares.
Shares in cigarette-to-hotel business chain ITC rose 2.6 percent on Wednesday to top the list of Sensex gainers on better earnings expectations.
The stock, which closed at 304.75 rupees, was among the big gainers on the BSE FMCG Index which topped the sectoral list with a rise of 1.9 percent.
The BSE Oil & Gas sector ended 2.2 percent higher on Monday, the first full day of trade after the government raised fuel prices as part of a plan to move towards a market-determined price regime.
The government freed up state-subsidised petrol prices and raised the prices of other fuels as pressure to trim a budget deficit seemed to outweigh concerns about its political impact.
Shares in Reliance Natural hit an intra-day high of over 6 percent on Friday after chairman Anil Ambani signed a revised gas supply agreement with brother Mukesh’s Reliance Industries.
The counter, which had opened lower, trimmed gains made after the announcement and closed 3.2 percent up at 65.95 rupees. Shares in Reliance Industries closed 1.1 percent higher.
Shares in Kotak Mahindra Bank fell as much as 3.4 percent during trade on Thursday after Dutch financial services group ING sold its 3.1 percent stake in the bank.
The sale of 10.8 million shares in stock market block deals, which helped ING raise $175 million, was done at 750 rupees a share, sources told Reuters. Another source had told Reuters yesterday that it would be in the range of 730-750 rupees each.
Kotak Mahindra, which the market values at roughly $6 billion, ended 2.6 percent lower at 762 rupees with volumes of 0.1 million shares.
The BSE Capital Goods Index ended 1.3 percent lower on Wednesday while most of the other indices ended the day in green.
The big names that led the fall were L&T, which ended 3 percent lower, Havells India, which dropped 1 percent, and Thermax, which slipped 1.8 percent.
The BSE Oil & Gas Index recouped early losses and ended marginally up on Tuesday after the oil minister said a decision on fuel prices would be taken on Friday.
Earlier this month, the government deferred a decision on raising fuel prices, the second time in a year that it has tripped on pushing the politically-sensitive reform measure that could help trim a budget deficit.