Sensex scales 2 months high at 17,600.12

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Sensex
Mumbai, May 2: The benchmark Sensex of the Bombay Stock Exchange today ended at a two month high at 17,600.12 points with a big gain of 312.81 on heavy speculative demand from Foreign Institutional Investors and Domestic Institutional Investors.

The CNX S&P Nifty index of NSE also crossed 5200 mark again and touched a new high at 5228.20 points this year with a big gain of 62.30 from its last close of 5165.90. Select heavyweight stocks mainly in BANKEX, Realty, Auto and MID CAP scrips surged in late trade to end close to the day's high. It held firm despite the latest data showing a rise in inflation to highest level in more than three years.

Firm global markets supported domestic bourses. The market had pared gains in mid-morning trade after a strong start ahead of the inflation data. It had surged in early trade on positive cues from global equities.

Gains in banking, realty, IT, capital goods, and auto stocks powered today's rally on the bourses. Except BSE, Metal index all the sectoral indices on BSE were trading in green. Metal stocks declined as global base metal prices retreated. The market breadth was positive.

European markets were strong, while Asian markets were firm. US stocks rose yesterday, as a rebound in the dollar and retreating oil prices calmed fears about inflation, renewing investors' appetite for riskier assets, including undervalued technology shares. India's wholesale price index rose 7.57 per cent in 12 months to April 19, 2008, accelerating from the previous week's annual rise of 7.33 per cent, government data released today showed. The rate was the highest since a reading of 7.68 per cent on November 13, 2004.

The 30-share BSE Sensex ended up by 312.1 points or 1.81 per cent at 17,600.12 from its last finish.

Sensex was up 158.62 points at the day's low of 17,445.93 hit in mid-morning trade. It hit a high of 17,621.24 in early trade, its highest level since February 29, 2008. At the day's high, Sensex rose 333.93 points.

The broader based S&P CNX Nifty index of NSE also was up by 62.30 points or 1.21 pc at 5,228.20 from its last close of 5165.90. It resumed firm at 5265.30, later it recorded the day's high at 5298.85 and a low at 5197.60 points. The BSE clocked a turnover of Rs 6549 crore today compared to a turnover of Rs 6909.57 crore on April 30.

The market breadth was positive with 1,393 shares advancing as compared to 1306 that declined on BSE. 74 remained unchanged.

The BSE Indices were also in limelight as BANKEX index rose sharply by 322.50 and ended positive at 9142.18 points, followed by CG index by 313.62 to 14,244.87 points, REALTY index by 213.20 to 8718.69, OILS&GAS index by 209.58 points, AUTO index by 135.15 to 4861.15 points, MID CAP index by 98.73 to 7237.47 points, IT index by 96.65 to 4358.58, PSU Index by 91.48 to 8173.01 points, Power index by 64.18 to 3402.99 and SML CAP index by 48.14 to 8821.71 points.

India's largest private sector firm by market capitalisation and oil refiner Reliance Industries (RIL) rose by 2.49 pc to Rs 2,680.05 after the company said it had signed an agreement to buy a 90 pc stake in an exploration block in Peru.

Banking stocks rose across the board despite surge in inflation.

HDFC Bank was up 1.33 pc to Rs 1,535 and ICICI Bank moved up 6.55 pc to Rs 930.25.

India's largest commercial bank State Bank of India gained 2.86 pc to Rs 1,827.10. The bank today reported 26 pc rise in net profit to Rs 1883 crore in Q4 March 2008 over Q4 March 2007. The results hit the market at the fag end of the trading session.

Bank of India moved up 5.36 pc to Rs 361 after it posted 70 pc rise in net profit to Rs 757 crore in Q4 March 2008 over Q4 March 2007.

Auto stock rose on strong monthly sales. India's largest car maker by sales Maruti Suzuki India rose 6.6 pc to Rs 790.90. Bajaj Holdings rose 3.38 pc to Rs 733.15. But India's largest motorbike maker by sales Hero Honda Motors declined 0.79 pc to Rs 844 despite the better performance of Hero Honda Motors, who reported a 9.03 pc jump in motorcycle sales during April 2008 at 2,86,252 units against 2,62,544 units in the same month last year.

Mahindra&Mahindra rose 2.95 pc to Rs 690.15 on reports the company is exploring buying stake in Pune-based two-wheeler maker Kinetic Motor. India's largest truck maker by sales Tata Motors rose 3.68 pc to Rs 685.05.

Realty stocks gained as Housing Development and Infrastructure was up 10.8 pc to Rs 855.35, Indiabulls Real Estate rose by 3.51 pc to Rs 567 and Unitech rose by 3.03 pc to Rs 319.80.

India's largest real estate player by market capitalisation DLF rose 2.11 pc to Rs 720.15. DLF reported a net profit of Rs 638.55 crore on a sales of Rs 1613.32 crore in Q4 March 2008.

Capital goods stocks gained as Larsen&Toubro was up 4.58 pc to Rs 3,141.05, Bharat Heavy Electricals rose 0.65 pc to Rs 1,909.25, Suzlon Energy moved up by 0.63 pc to Rs 288.95.

IT stocks as Wipro rose by 2.78 pc to Rs 502.20 followed by Tata Consultancy Services by 2.31 pc to Rs 940.75, Satyam Computer services by 2.47 pc to Rs 494.10 and Infosys by 2.04 pc to Rs 1,789.50.

Jaiprakash Associates was up 5.77 pc to Rs 286.95, ONGC rose by 0.56 pc to Rs 1,039.20, ITC moved up 0.43 pc to Rs 220.75.

Indian Bank rose 2.23 pc to Rs 142.15. It has signed an agreement with Reliance Capital Asset Management to act as a corporate agent to sell the mutual fund products of Reliance Mutual Fund.

Adani Enterprises rose 2.7 pc to Rs 868. The company's subsidiary, Adani Power, has filed a draft red herring form (DRHF) today with the Securities&Exchange Board of India offering 29.69 crore equity shares (including employee reservation) to the public on 100 per cent book building basis.

Good Q4 results for March 2008 and firm global markets, triggered a solid rebound in the Indian markets over the past few days. Buying by domestic institutions has supported the market, which helped to boost sentiment in many heavyweight scrips, brokers pointed out.

However, a few heavyweight stocks drifted lower on profit booking as Metal stocks declined as global base metal prices retreated. Sterlite Industries was down by 4.24 pc to Rs 825.60 followed by Hindalco Industries by 4 pc to Rs 185.85 and Tata Steel by 2.52 pc to Rs 797 National aluminium Company by 2.42 pc to Rs 438.40 and Steel Authority of India by 1 pc to Rs 183.20. HDFC was down by 1.11 pc to Rs 2,773.75, ACC came down 0.67 pc to Rs 753.55, Ambuja Cement eased 0.88 pc to Rs 112.90.

India's largest telecom services provider by sales Reliance Communications declined 3.2 pc to Rs 561.20. Reliance Communications is reportedly looking to bid for South African telecom major MTN.

Reliance Communications is talking to leading global banks to raise resources and be ready, in case MTN's management decides to invite bids, the reports added.

UNI

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