Money on the markets
A maturing market amid the mayhem
Stock market enthusiasts had almost given up hope after losing an average 52 percent in 2008, when the benchmark Sensex recorded its first annual fall after six years of gains. But a rally since the start of March has bought the smiles back.
By September 30, as many as 10 equity funds more than doubled their net asset values as fund managers bought into the global panic, data from global fund tracker Lipper, a Thomson Reuters company, showed. During the same period 145 Indian equity funds outperformed the 30-share Sensex, which returned 73 percent.
Domestic tax saving funds, which manage nearly 200 billion rupees ($4.3 billion dollars), also rose with the tide. The nation’s largest such fund, SBI Magnum Tax Gain, surged 83 percent.
Tax funds provide investors with an avenue to save up to 33,000 rupees in Income Tax, although the invested amount remains locked in for a period of three years.
The company reported its quarterly numbers on Wednesday and said net profit nearly trebled, helped by cost cuts and strong sales.
All stocks in the index, except Marico, closed in the green, led by Dabur India which rose 5.8 percent and ITC which gained nearly 5 percent.
Essar Oil was the top loser in the index, closing down 4 percent. ONGC too came under pressure and slipped 2.4 percent.
The BSE IT index closed 1.4 percent lower, with stocks such as Infosys and TCS ending down over 1.5 percent. Outsourcers like Infosys which get most of their revenue in dollars, felt the heat as the rupee climbed to a near 13-month high.
The stocks declined 7.4 percent on the NSE.
Tata Motors was the top Sensex loser and also pulled the BSE Auto Index down 1.72 percent, making it the worst sectoral performer of the day.
Market participants are worried that lower tariffs and increasing competition could hurt profitability of such firms. On Monday, Reliance Communications cut call charges across all networks to 50 paise/min.
Bharti shares closed down rupees 34.85 at 400.25 with volumes of over 6 million on the BSE, making it one of the most traded counters.