Sensex rallies by 41 pts during the week

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Mumbai, Sep 20 (UNI) The Sensex of Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) rallied modestly by 41.51 points, or 0.3 per cent, to settle at 14,042.32 in the week ended yesterday.

Similarly, the S &P CNX Nifty index of National Stock Exchange (NSE) also gained 16.80 points, or 0.39 pc, at 4,245.25 during the same period after Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram assured to provide more liquidity to the market in the event of a tight cash situation.

Mr Chidambaram had said the global turmoil would partly impact credit availability in India and the public sector banks had virtually no exposure to the debt of Lehman Brothers, which filed for bankruptcy in the United States earlier this week.

Many heavyweight stocks turned positive in the second half of today's trading, with Mr Chidambaram's statement boosting market sentiments.

Benchmark indices closed with marginal gains, supported by banking, oil, few capital goods, power and auto stocks. However, realty, technology, telecom, pharma and few metal stocks remained under pressure followed by mid-cap and small-cap stocks.

Short covering was seen in banking stocks, which supported markets to end in the green. Domestic funds too nibbled at lower levels in today's trade, while bank and corporate treasury too were buyers.

Brokers said it was a spectacular session for the markets, influenced by strong global cues, on hopes that the US Government is considering a comprehensive plan to rescue financial firms from the debt trap and to end the credit crisis, running for more than 10 months.

Even in order to stabilise share prices of financial firms as it was happening by way of more short selling, the US market regulator, SEC, has halted short-selling of financial stocks in the US. This halt will apply to 799 financial stocks. After this news, Dow Jones and Nasdaq Futures gained around nearly 2.5 pc.

China scrapped stamp duty on stock purchase and curbed short selling, helping Shanghai to scale up to 10 pc in today's trade followed by Hang Seng with a gain of 9.61 pc at close. The Nikkei was up 3.76 pc, Taiwan 5.82 pc, Kospi 4.55 pc, Straits Times 5.78 pc and Jakarta 5.82 pc, which boosted the Indian bourses in the last two days, brokers pointed out.

Russia's RTS also jumped nearly 20 per cent to 1,266.75 after the massive fall since Monday. It had lost 21 pc in first three days of the week.

The domestic market recovered all the losses posted earlier in the week, as the global stocks witnessed a fresh lease of life on September 19, after US Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson proposed to Congressional lawmakers a proposal that would create an entity to deal with the billions of dollars of bad debt still choking the financial system.

A deep financial crisis engulfed the global markets eariler in the week, when the US investment banking giant Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy, Merrill Lynch was bought over by Bank of America in a distress sale and the world's largest insurer AIG had to seek US Government's help to thwart an imminent collapse.

The BSE Mid-Cap index fell 308.36 points, or 5.57 pc, to 5,228.78 in the week ended Friday. The BSE Small-Cap index slipped 495.55 points, or 7.38 pc, to 6,215.99 in the week.

BSE Realty index was down 12.59 pc to 4,102.64, followed by BSE IT index by 3.68 pc to 3,666.75, BSE Power index by 0.66 pc to 2,529.79, BSE Metal index by 7.79 pc to 10,033.59, BSE Capital Goods index by 0.82 pc to 11,740.07.

However, BSE Oil &Gas index was up 3.86 pc to 9,468.42, BSE Auto index moved up 0.16 pc to 3,958.25 underperformed Sensex in the week.

BSE Bankex outperformed the Sensex rising 1.15 pc to 7,109.88 in the second half of the week.

Earlier, in the the first half part of the week, the top heavy weight stocks suffered a sebtack as bears ruled the bourses for the fifth consecutive day after US investment bank Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy protection, making it the largest and highest-profile casualty of the global credit crisis. Nonetheless, news that China's central bank has cut interest rates helped the domestic bourses cut steep intra-day losses.

A coordinated effort by global central banks to ease a funding squeeze in money markets helped the key benchmark indices reverse sharp early losses and end in the green. A USD 21.7 billion deal by British bank Lloyds TSB to prevent another UK victim of the credit crisis also helped ease investors' jitters after US stocks hit a three-year low on September 17.

National Stock Exchange (NSE) on September 16 said there were no outstanding open positions/settlement obligations of Lehman Brothers Securities currently in the cash market segment and derivatives segment of NSE.

Inflation based on the wholesale price index rose marginally to 12.14 pc on September 6, as compared to the previous week's 12.10 pc, according to data released by the government on September 18.

Crude oil for October 2008 was hovering at USD 97.88 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It had fallen to as low as USD 90.51 earlier in the week, continuing an almost steady decline since hitting a record USD 147.27 on July 11.

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