BSE Sensex again slips by 109 points

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Mumbai, Jan 31: The benchmark Sensex of the Bombay Stock Exchange ended in the red for the second consecutive day today at 17,648.71 with a loss of 109.93 points on sustained heavy offloading by Foreign Institutional Investors and domestic operators.

The market witnessed volatile trade as January 2008 derivative contract expired today. It opened on a firm note after the US Federal Reserve recently slashed the key interest rate by 50 basis points. It staged a strong rebound later in afternoon trade. However, the market was not able to sustain higher levels as European markets turned red after a positive start. The Asian markets were mixed.

The 30-share BSE Sensex slipped by 109.93 points or 0.62 per cent at 17,648.71 at the closing session. It surged 249.41 points at day's high of 18,008.05 hit and also reacted down at 17,417.63 points during the trade.

The broader based S&P CNX Nifty index of National Stock Exchange (NSE) also ended lower by 30.75 points or 0.58 per cent at 5,137.45 from its last finish.

The BSE Mid-Cap index was down by 62.44 points, or 0.80 per cent to 7,766.62, while the BSE Small-Cap index eased by 22.44 points at 10,124.42 points at the closing.

The total turnover recorded was Rs 5152 crore on BSE as compared to Rs 3605 crore at the previous level.

Asian markets, which opened before the Indian market, were trading mixed today. Japan's Nikkei was up 1.85 per cent at 13,592.17, South Korea's Seoul Composite rose by 2.24 per cent at 1,624.68.

However, China's Shanghai Composite came down by 0.78 per cent to 4,383.39, followed by Taiwan's Taiwan Weighted by 0.30 per cent at 7,521.13 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng by 0.84 per cent at 23,455.74.

US stocks declined yesterday as fears about the US economy's health resurfaced on speculation that US bond insurers credit rating could take a hit. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 37.47 points, or 0.30 per cent, at 12,442.83. The Nasdaq Composite index fell 9.06 points, or 0.38 per cent, to 2,349.00, which reflected the downward trend in Indian bourses, brokers said.

India's largest private sector aluminium manufacturer in terms of sales, Hindalco Industries declined 6.02 per cent to Rs 165.50 off the day's high of Rs 175. 11.79 lakh shares changed hands on the counter on the BSE. It was the top loser from the Sensex pack.

Reliance Communications slipped 0.55 per cent to Rs 605 despite posting 48.5 per cent rise in consolidated net profit to Rs 1,372.83 on 29.79 per cent rise in consolidated total income to Rs 4,874.2 crore in Q3 December 2007 over the corresponding period in 2006.

DLF was down 5.24 per cent to Rs 817, followed by ICICI Bank by 3.11 per cent to Rs 1148, and State Bank of India by 2.78 per cent to Rs 2158.75 were the other losers from the Sensex pack.

India's second biggest cement maker in terms of total production ACC pared gains from day's high of Rs 829.70. It settled 2.87 per cent lower at Rs 774.50 However, a few scrips were in limelight like Hindustan Unilever, the country's top FMCG company in terms of sales. It surged 5.30 per cent to Rs 207. It was the top gainer from the Sensex pack.

Bharti Airtel was up 2.66 per cent to Rs 875, and HDFC Bank rose 1.84 per cent to Rs 1560 among the other gainers from Sensex pack.

India's second largest bike manufacturer in terms of sales, Bajaj Auto rose 4.68 per cent to Rs 2375, off day's low of Rs 2230. Bajaj Auto yesterday posted 5.32 per cent fall in net profit to Rs 326.81 crore in Q3 December 2007 over same period in 2006.

Oil&Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) advanced 2.53 per cent to Rs 993 on 2.42 lakh shares. As per reports, the Director-General of Hydrocarbons (DGH) has conceded ONGC's demand for a drilling holiday on account of a global rig shortage. The stock moved in a range of Rs 970 and Rs 1034.80 during the day. India's largest private sector firm by market capitalization and oil refiner Reliance Industries (RIL) rose 0.70 per cent to Rs 2487 on 12.19 lakh shares. The stock recovered sharply from day's low of Rs 2375.05. It had hit a high of Rs 2567.70 in afternoon trade.

India's largest private sector steel maker in terms of total output Tata Steel gained by 0.89 per cent to Rs 730.

Meanwhile, SEBI has decided to reduce the costs for mutual fund investors by doing away with the initial issue fee for close-ended schemes. The Sebi board, which met yesterday after the market closed, also cleared the draft proposal for listing debt securities, eased disclosure norms for existing debt market securities and paved the way for permanent registration of capital market intermediaries, brokers added.

UNI

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