Sensex strikes an all-time high above the 16,600 level

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Mumbai, Sep 21: The bulls once again reigned supreme on the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) as the Sensex today zoomed by a whopping 216.28 points to settle at an all-time closing high at 16,564.23 after hitting an all-time high of 16, 616.84 buoyed by a further dip in inflation and record foreign institutional investors (FIIs) inflows into the Indian economy.

''The market surged towards the latter part of the trading session propelled by heavy buying in index pivotals especially for Reliance group stocks. Total turnover on BSE breached the Rs 8,000 crore mark. Both the niche indices BSE Sensex and S&P CNX Nifty struck all time highs. Even information technology (IT) pivotals bounced back after an initial slide,'' market pundits said.

Inflation, based on the wholesale-price-index, further slipped by 3.32 per cent for the week ended September 8 as against 3.52 per cent in the previous week, official data released today showed.

It is also pertinent to note here that FIIs' net inflow in the country crossed USD 10 billion so far this year with an investment of USD 5.75 billion in the month of July, this year, highest ever in a month. FIIs made a net purchase worth about a staggering USD 10.5 billion in equity and debt markets since the beginning of this year, topping the total net investment of USD 8.87 billion in the whole of last year. Total FII inflow so far in the country stands at USD 61 billion. The number of FIIs registered with the market regulator has increased to 1,063 in July this year from 934 last year, Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) data reveals.

Among the broader markets too, the National Stock Exchange (NSE) S&P CNX Nifty surged by 90 points to settle at an all-time closing high of 4,837.55 after hitting an all time high of 4,855.70.

However, the market breadth was negative on the BSE since 1,615 shares declined as compared to 1,149 that advanced, while 51 remained unchanged. The BSE Mid-Cap index hit an all time high of 7,231.90, while The BSE Small-Cap index hit an all time high of 8,964.29, BSE data shows. But, these indices underperformed the Sensex. The total turnover surged above the Rs 8,000 crore mark at Rs 8,198 crore boosted by 4 massive block deals of 1.62 crore shares each struck on Ambuja Cements counter. These deals were executed at an average rate of Rs 149.48 per share. Ambuja Cements was the top traded counter on the BSE with total turnover of Rs 1,053.05 crore.

The scrip rose 1.95 per cent to Rs 149 on a huge volume of 7.05 crore shares. Among the 30-stock Sensex pack, 19 advanced while 11 declined.

India's largest private sector entity by market capitalisation Reliance Industries (RIL) advanced 4.56 per cent to Rs 2,292 on 8.70 lakh shares after hitting an all-time high of Rs 2,294 following reports that it has found oil in its D4 block in the Krishna Godavari (KG) Basin. The Company had earlier completed the technical testing in the block KG (D4) on Sept 8 and is in the process of informing the Directorate General of Hydrocarbons (DGH).

Reliance Natural Resources, SBI, Bharti Airtel, Hindustan Unilever, Reliance Energy (REL), L&T, ONGC, Wipro, Infosys Technologies and TCS soared, while Satyam Computers, NTPC, ITC, Hindalco and Cipla were the other losers from Sensex pack.

MARKETS-STOCKS INTRO TWO LAST MUMBAI

India's top private sector utility company in terms of revenue Reliance Energy (REL) gained 2.46 per cent to Rs 1,012 on 12.32 lakh shares. The stock hit an all-time high of Rs 1,033 in intra-day trade. It was the top gainer from Sensex pack. REL is reportedly scouting for coal mines in Indonesia, Australia, Africa and Mozambique and it sees infrastructure projects such as road and rail transport as key growth drivers. It also plans to raise USD 12.0-USD 12.5 billion in debt over the next seven to eight years to expand generation capacity nearly 16 times to 15,000 mega watt.

India's largest engineering and construction firm by revenue Larsen&Toubro climbed up 1.23 per cent to Rs 2,780 following the news that the Company is eyeing a stake in Feedback Ventures, a leading integrated infrastructure services firm.

India's largest oil exploration company in terms of market capitalisation Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) gained 2.44 per cent to Rs 927.50. It has reportedly sought a steep hike in the price of gas to Rs 4,500 per thousand cubic metre from the present Rs 3,200 per thousand cubic metre. ONGC hopes to gain Rs 2,000 crore in revenues annually if prices were raised.

IT stocks saw high volatility today. They declined in early trade but later staged a sharp recovery on value buying. Wipro rose 1.70 per cent to Rs 440.85. However, Satyam Computers was down 0.31 per cent to Rs 420. Infosys Technologies gained 1.40 per cent to Rs 1793 and TCS gained 1.72 per cent to Rs 1,018 after touching 52-week low of Rs 978 earlier during the day.

Infosys Technologies ADR slipped 4.59 per cent to USD 47.02 overnight on Nasdaq. Other IT ADRs also edged lower. Wipro slumped 2.74 per cent to USD 13.83, Patni Computer Systems sank 2.33 per cent to USD 23.28, and Satyam Computers plummeted 3.70 per cent to USD 24.76.

The Indian Rupee was trading almost unchanged 39.90, as compared to yesterday's close of 39.89/39.90. A rise in rupee impacts the margins of IT companies as they earn over 50 per cent of their revenues from exports.

India's top power generation company in terms of net profit, NTPC lost 2.49 per cent to Rs 184.40 on 62.13 lakh shares. It was the top loser from Sensex pack.

Reliance Natural Resources surged 34.68 per cent to Rs 76.50 on huge volumes of 9.44 crore shares on reports that the Company has applied for a license to undertake city gas distribution business in Delhi, Mumbai, Gurgaon and Noida. It hit an all time high of Rs 79.20 on the BSE.

European markets were trading with gains. Key benchmark indices from United Kingdom rose 0.45 per cent to 6,457.08, Germany advanced 0.46 per cent to 7,770.13, and France is up 0.28 per cent to 5,704.47.

Asian markets were mixed today. Taiwan Weighted rose 1.36 per cent at 9,105.28, Hang Seng advanced 0.56 per cent at 25,843.76, and South Korea's Seoul Composite edged higher 0.54 per cent to 1,919.26. But Singapore's Straits Times dipped 0.29 per cent to 3,542.22 and Japan's Nikkei slipped 0.62 per cent at 16,316.74.

US stocks retreated yesterday, impacted by mixed earnings reports, a tumbling dollar and surging oil prices. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 48.86 points, or 0.35 per cent, to 13,766.70. Broader stock indices also declined. The Standard&Poor's 500 index fell 10.28 points, or 0.67 per cent, to 1,518.75, and the technology-dominated Nasdaq Composite index fell 12.19 points, or 0.46 per cent, to 2,654.29.

Crude oil prices held near USD 82 a barrel today after hitting a record of USD 84.10 yesterday as a tropical depression forced the shutdown of Gulf of Mexico output and sparked supply fears ahead of peak winter fuel demand. US crude for November delivery, the new front month, dipped 6 cents to USD 81.72 a barrel. London Brent November crude rose 3 cents to USD 79.12 per barrel.

UNI

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