BSE Sensex up by 404.90 pts, closes at 17,125.98

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Mumbai, Apr 25: The benchmark Sensitive index of the Bombay Stock Exchange today closed at a six week high at 17,125.98 with a big gain of 404.90 points on heavy specultive demand from Foreign Institutional Investors.

Asian markets, which opened before Indian markets, were trading mixed today as Japan's Nikkei was up by 2.40 per cent at 13,872.84, Singapore's Straits Times moved up by 0.41 pc at 3,190.69 and South Korea's Seoul Composite rose by 1.41 pc at 1,824.68. US markets advanced yesterday as investors focused on the Labour Department data showing weekly unemployment claims dropping and word that Ford had a USD 100 million profit in the first quarter. The Dow Jones industrial average rose by 85.73 points, or 0.67 pc, to 12,848.95. The Nasdaq Composite index added 23.71 points, or 0.99 pc,to 2,428.92, which helped to boost the Indian bourses.

'' It was a surprising close for the markets as the day ended with some hefty gains. It was trading in green for major part of the day but surged in the final hour of trade. Buying was seen in telecom, banking, auto, metal, oil and technology stocks. The Sensex has crossed the 17000 mark and Nifty went above 5,100 mark.

On the macroeconomic front, inflation came higher at 7.33 per cent versus 7.14 per cent, it is more or less inline with market expectations, brokers said.

The markets are trading higher on account of buying seen in Telecom, banking, auto, metal, oil and technology stocks. The Sensex has crossed its 17000 mark. Broader markets have underperformed the benchmark indices. Midcap and small cap stocks are trading with moderate gains. Telecom, bank shares rallied as Sensex moved past 17,000 mark in mid-session.

Buoyant corporate results, good rollovers in derivatives and firm global equities led to market surge. However, the market breadth was negative. Both the benchmark indices - BSE Sensex and S&P CNX Nifty settled above the key levels of 17,000 and 5,000 barriers.

The market had witnessed a bout of volatility in mid-afternoon trade after inflation data was released. The wholesale price index based inflation rose to 7.33 per cent for the week ended April 12 2008, as against 7.14 per cent in the previous week, data released showed.

The 30-share BSE Sensex was up by 404.90 points or 2.42 per cent at 17,125.98 points at the end of the session. Sensex hit a high of 17,150.95 in late trade. It had last closed above 17,000 mark on February 29.

The broader based S&P CNX Nifty index of NSE also crossed 5,000 mark and ended firm at 5111.70 points. The index gained by 111.85 points or 2.24 per cent from its last close of 4999.85 points.

Despite the rally, the market breadth was negative. On BSE with 1474 shares declined as compared to 1242 that advanced. 50 remained unchanged.

The BSE METAL index shot up by 370.75 points to close firm at 15,735.18 points, followed by BANKEX Index by 286.03 to 8868.08, OILS&GAS by 179.23 to 11,554.59, PSU index by 113.63 to 7837.39 points, REALTY index by 112.64 to 8149.77, TECH index by 104.14 to 3395.54 and MID CAP index by 51.81 points. The total turnover on BSE spurted in last hour of trade. It amounted to Rs 6012 crore as compared to Rs 3906 crore.Among the 30-member Sensex pack, 21 advanced while the rest declined.

Telecom stocks were in forefront of today's rally. India's top cellular services provider in terms of market capitalisation Bharti Airtel surged 8.99 per cent to Rs 920.10 on high volumes of 23.20 lakh shares. It was the top gainer from the Sensex pack. Bharti Airtel posted 39.25 pc rise in net profit to Rs 1792.30 crore on 41.82 pc jump in total income to Rs 7446.82 crore in Q4 March 2008 over Q4 March 2007.

Reliance Communications (RCom), the country's second biggest cellular services provider in terms of market capitalisation, advanced 8.86 pc to Rs 580. As per reports, Reliance Communications has acquired 90 pc stake in a UK-based WiMax operator, 'eWave World'. RCom intends to invest $500 million in eWave to build and acquire WiMax networks in the emerging markets of Asia, Europe, Latin America and Africa Ideal Cellular, India's sixth-largest mobile operator in terms of subscribers, gained 4.71 pc to Rs 107.80 after it reported 44.60 pc rise in net profit Rs 278.20 crore on 50.70 pc rise in net sales to Rs 1972.40 crore in Q4 March 2008 over Q4 March 2007. The results were announced during market hours yesterday.

Banking shares rallied despite latest data showing rise in inflation. State bank of India was up 4.51 pc to Rs 1758.55 followed by HDFC Bank by 3.34 pc to Rs 1494.50, and ICICI Bank by 4.18 pc to Rs 913.

Oil refiner Reliance Industries (RIL) rose 1.71 pc to Rs 2,625.05 on 7.96 lakh shares.

Reliance Energy was up 4.47 pc to Rs 1364.80, HDFC rose by 3.42 pc to Rs 2678 and Tata Steel gained 3.41 pc to Rs 803.

India's second largest cement maker in terms of sales, ACC slipped 1.67 pc to Rs 784.80 after it reported marginal rise of 0.53 pc in net profit to Rs 357.54 crore on 7.68 pc increase in total income to Rs 1861.37 crore in Q1 March 2008 over Q1 March 2007 during market hours yesterday. It was the top loser from the Sensex pack.

Ambuja Cement was down 0.78 pc to Rs 114.30. During market hours today, the company reported 42.39 pc decline in net profit to Rs 326.2 crore on 16.72 pc rise in total income to Rs 1,695.41 crore in Q1 March 2008 over Q1 March 2007.

Cipla declined 0.91 pc to Rs 224.10, ahead of its March 2008 quarterly results due today.

India's largest dam builder Jaiprakash Associates staged a sharp pullback in late trade and close down by 0.32 pc to Rs 245.65, after touching low of Rs 234.40 in intra-day trade. The counter saw high volumes of 37.84 lakh shares.

India's top small car maker in terms of sales Maruti Suzuki India slipped 0.81 pc to Rs 739.90. The company posted 33.63 pc decline in net profit to Rs 297.68 crore on 9.35 pc rise in total income to Rs 5069.94 crore in Q4 March 2008 over Q4 March 2007, during market hours yesterday.

DLF was down 0.92 pc to Rs 668.55, Infosys eased by 0.65 pc to Rs 1682 were the other losers from Sensex pack As per reports, marketwide rollover from April 2008 series to May 2008 series stood at 82 pc as compared to 79 pc in the previous series, March 2008 to April 2008. Nifty rollover stood at 71 pc as compared to 63 pc in the previous series.

Market may stay cautious ahead of Reserve Bank of India (RBI)'s monetary policy review on April 29 2008. Analysts are split whether the central bank will raise interest rates.

As per provisional data, foreign institutional investors sold shares worth a net Rs 759.16 crore yesterday. Domestic funds bought shares worth a net Rs 442.88 crore.

FIIs were net buyers of Rs 591.53 crore in the futures&options segment last Thursday. They were net sellers of index futures to the tune of Rs 229.12 crore and bought index options worth Rs 740.36 crore. They were net buyers of stock futures to the tune of Rs 40.13 crore and bought stock options worth Rs 40.16 crore, brokers added.

UNI

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