Sensex, Nifty strike all time high

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Mumbai, Sept 24: The 30-scrip Sensex today spurted by 281.60 points on the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) to settle at 16,845.83 after hitting a life-time high of 16,869.64 as foreign institutional investors (FIIs) continued to pump in funds in index pivotals, buoyed by positive global cues and strenghtening fundamentals of the Indian economy.

''Domestic indices kept on advancing as the day progressed on steady buying demand for index pivotals throughout the day, except for an hiccup in early trade. Turnover was healthy today and it crossed Rs 7,500 crore on the BSE. Both the niche indices struck all time highs today,'' market players said.

Similarly, the National Stock Exchange (NSE) S&P CNX Nifty also surged by around 95 points to settle above the 4,900 level at 4,932.20 after striking an all-time high of 4,941.15.

However, despite the solid rally in market, BSE data reveals that the market breadth was negative as 1,454 shares declined as compared to 1,302 that advanced, 51 remained unchanged. Even the BSE Mid-Cap index hit an all-time high of 7, 321.02 and the BSE Small-Cap index hit record high of 9,013.35. The total turnover amounted to Rs 7,744 crore. Among the Sensex pack, 25 advanced while 5 declined.

Reliance Energy (REL), NTPC, Maruti Suzuki, Bharti Airtel, Bhel, ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank, SBI, Reliance Industries (RIL), Reliance Communications and L&T advanced, while Infosys Technologies, Satyam Computers, TCS, ITC and Grasim were the other losers from Sensex pack.

Among Asian markets, Hong Kong's Hang Seng advanced 1.12 per cent at 26,133.46, China's Shanghai Composite is up 0.56 per cent to 5,485.03, and Singapore's Straits Times soared 2.73 per cent at 3,639.02 . Stock markets in Japan, South Korea and Taiwan were closed on account of public holidays.

US stocks posted steady gains in its last trading session, capping a strong week for Wall Street, as investors drew confidence from strong results at Oracle Corp and a continued sense that lower interest rates should help bolster the economy. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 53.49, or 0.39 per cent, to 13,820.19.

Broader stock indicators also rose. The Standard&Poor's 500 index advanced 7.00, or 0.46 per cent, to 1,525.75, while the Nasdaq Composite index rose 16.93, or 0.64 per cent, to 2, 671.22.

Reliance Energy (REL) surged 8.17 per cent to Rs 1,092.10 on 21.52 lakh shares. 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.

National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC), the country's largest power generation company by net sales, jumped 4.96 per cent to Rs 196.80 on 46.18 lakh shares. It replaced Dabur India in the S&P CNX Nifty index from today.

Maruti Suzuki India galloped 7.47 per cent to Rs 999, after the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) last week cleared Maruti's proposal to form a joint venture for setting up an exhaust parts manufacturing facility in Haryana with Japan's Futaba Industrial Company. Futaba holding a 51 per cent in the venture.

Bharti Airtel rose 2.52 per cent to Rs 941.50 after getting a licence to start Direct-To-Home (DTH) services in the country and announcing an investment of Rs 150 crores in the first phase to launch nation-wide operations, a move that would bring in much required competition in the DTH segment. The company may get extra spectrum for Delhi and Mumbai under the existing subscriber-base norms.

BHEL gained 1.82 per cent to Rs 2,002. The company is looking at mergers and acquisition to fuel inorganic growth and is targeting a turnover of Rs 45,000 crore by 2012.

Banking pivotals advanced on fresh buying and Reliance Industries (RIL) rose 3.63 per cent to Rs 2357 on 7.87 lakh shares. It hit an all time high of Rs 2375 in intra-day trade. RIL had earlier said on Saturday that it has struck oil in the deepwater block KG-D4 located in the Krishna Basin. The commercial viability of the discovery is being evaluated. RIL holds 100 per cent participating interest in this block, which spans over an area of 8100 sq kms. The rumours about RIL's oil find had already hit the market on Friday.

Larsen&Toubro (L&T), soared 4.49 per cent to Rs 2,908 after recent reports said that it is close to acquiring a stake in Feedback Ventures, a leading integrated infrastructure services firm. The stock hit an all time high of Rs 2910 on the BSE.

Information technology (IT) shares were weak throughout the day.

India's second largest software services exporter Infosys Technologies was the top loser from Sensex pack slipping 3.30 per cent to Rs 1761.90 on 2.83 lakh shares. Other IT pivotals were not spared either.

Crude oil prices dipped today as oil and gas producers in the Gulf of Mexico restored more output after a mild storm triggered evacuation and production cuts. US crude for November delivery fell 22 cents to USD 81.40 a barrel.

UNI

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