Sensex sheds further 167.29 points

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Mumbai, Jan 17: After oscillating between red and green, the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) sensitive index ultimately ended 167.29 points down at 19700.82 on bouts of alternate selling and buying in blue-chip stocks.

Amid choppy trading throughout the day, the Sensex witnessed a range-bound session and extended the bearish trend on the fourth consecutive day today by touching the day's low of 19643.76. However, Sensex recovered in the afternoon and moved into the green to touch the day's high of 20026.12, but failed to hold on to the gains. The Sensex, finally, ended in the red on strong profit bookings in selective scrips, with the heavyweights pulling the Sensex down, traders said.

Similarly, the National Stock Exchange (NSE)'s Nifty index closed 22.55 points down at 5913.15 from its previous close of 5935.75. Nifty touched the day's high at 6013.15 and a low of 5880.30.

The market gave up the early gains as index heavyweights Reliance Industries and ICICI Bank declined, traders opined. RIL declined after it reported the Q3 December 2007 results which were boosted by one-off gains, and DLF also slipped. Banking, oil&gas and realty shares too declined.

The BSE Mid-cap ended 0.79 per cent up at 9340.01 and Small-cap gained 1.74 per cent to close at 12740.29. The BSE clocked a turnover of Rs 8423 crore.

Sectoral indices on BSE were mixed. Oil&gas and consumers goods indices were the major gainers of the day, gaining 1.99 and 1.38 per cent respectively.

The Asian markets showed a mixed trend today, while the European markets were in the green.

With the Group of Ministers (GoM) on fuel pricing meeting today, it is apprehended that the government may hike petrol prices by a steep Rs 4 per litre and diesel by Rs 2 per litre. A steep hike in the retail fuel prices will lead to an escalation in the inflation, it is apprehended.

Among the frontliners, Reliance Industries (RIL) lost 3.30 per cent to Rs 2996.25, Reliance Energy (REL) fell 2.38 per cent to Rs 2212.70, Ambuja Cements slipped 3.89 per cent to Rs 130.80, while DLF was down 3.71 per cent to Rs 1085.75. Ranbaxy Laboratories declined 2.85 per cent to Rs 367.90, and Satyam Computers fell 1.95 per cent to Rs 372.45.

However, ITC soared 3.98 per cent, Grasim Industries rose 3.05 per cent, Maruti Suzuki flared up 2.76 per cent, Larsen&Toubro climbed 2.20 per cent, and Cipla was up 1.83 per cent.

The BSE Bankex fell 1.58 per cent. It underperformed the Sensex. ICICI Bank shed 3.46 per cent, Centurion Bank of Punjab fell 1.75 per cent, HDFC Bank declined 1.72 per cent, Federal Bank slipped 1.55 per cent, and Canara Bank was down 0.90 per cent.

The BSE Oil&Gas index fell 1.97 per cent. It underperformed the Sensex. Aban Offshore dropped 2.85 per cent, HPCL slipped 1.83 per cent, Indian Oil Corporation was down 1.65 per cent, and Reliance Petroleum fell 0.75 per cent.

The FMCG index rose 1.79 per cent and outperformed the Sensex.

Godrej Consumer Products rose 1.60 per cent, Hindustan Unilever gained 1.09 per cent and Tata Tea rose 0.62 per cent.

As per the latest data, the IPO of Reliance Power was subscribed 20.84 times. The IPO closes tomorrow. REL will have 45 per cent stake in Reliance Power post-issue.

Reliance Industries clocked the highest turnover of Rs 472.55 crore on BSE. Reliance Natural Resources (Rs 431.10 crore), Reliance Energy (Rs 316.12 crore), Reliance Capital (Rs 210.53 crore) and Himachal Futuristic Communications (Rs 202.53 crore), were the other turnover toppers on BSE in that order.


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