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Sensex ends flat at 10,840 as Sonia resigns as MP; Nifty gains

Written by: Staff

Mumbai, Mar 23: After a directionless trading during the day, the BSE Sensex today closed flat at 10,840.59 points, almost unchanged from the last close of 10,841.35.

It was for the third session in row that Sensex ended in the red.

Yesterday, the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) Sensitive Index (Sensex) had closed 64 points down at 10,841 on profit-booking.

Sensex drifted in the red towards the close as a knee jerk reaction following the news of Ms Sonia Gandhi resigning as member of Parliament (MP) and as Chairperson of National Advisory Council (NAC), but recovered quickly to close absolutely flat.

In contrast, the National Stock Exchange (NSE) 50-share S&P CNX Nifty index closed seven points up at 3,247.

Earlier, Sensex opened 20 points up at 10,861, as compared to the last close of 10,841 points.

However, high volatility saw the benchmark index swing 132 points as it moved erratically between a high of 10,924 points and a low of 10,792.

The US market indices (NYSE, Nasdaq and Dow Jones) closed in the green today but Asian markets had a mixed day as the Japanese market index closed marginally lower but others Asian indices gained.

The crude oil prices, however, still traded above USD 62 per barrel at USD 62.55 per barrel in the New York Mercantile Exchange, which put pressure on the domestic markets.

However, amidst moderate close of the major sectroal indices on the BSE, the metal index was on fire, closing with a gain of huge 2.55 per cent.

The leading gainers amongst the metal stock were - Tata Steel, up with a gain of 3.37 per cent at Rs 485.05; Steel Authority of India(SAIL) was up by 7.27 per cent at Rs 73.05 gaining by Rs 4.95 and Hindalco was up by 1.74 per cent at Rs 160.65.

Other gainers were Jindal Steel, up by 3.34 per cent at Rs 1,744 and Gujarat NRE Coke was up by 7.75 per cent at Rs 99.35 Top gainers on the 30-share Sensex were Tata Steel, SBI, Bajaj Auto, Hindalco, ITC, Ranbaxy, Reliance Industries, Larsen&Toubro, ACC and Wipro.

The top losers on the Sensex were Dr Reddy's Lab, Bharti Tele, HDFC Bank, Reliance Energy, Tata Motors, Infosys, Maruti, TCS, Grasim Industries and ONGC.

There were two huge block deals on the stock markets today.

ICICI Bank's 27 lakh shares changed hands in the foreign institutional investors (FIIs) segment at Rs 604.50 per share and in another deal 1.2 crore shares of Reliance changed hands in three deals on the NSE.

''Markets behaved erratically today following the political developments that culminated with the resignation of Ms Gandhi today and should remain negative tomorrow too, not because of political developments but due to institutional selling,'' said Ambareesh Baliga of Karvy Stock Broking.

''Markets will remain buoyant in the long-term but correction will be seen in the medium to short term,'' Mr Baliga said.

Jet Airways closed with a gain of 2.33 per cent or Rs 21.40 at Rs 940.55 on the back of the controversial deal with Air Sahara which seemed to be heading towards a fair settlements with few amendments which was still on the negotiation table. The stock had dipped to Rs 919.15 yesterday but today it touched a high of Rs 950 before cooling off. The 52 week high for the stock was Rs 1,379 and the lowest in the 52 week was Rs 891.15.

It may trade higher tomorrow as well to correct recent losses, an analyst said.

The top losers on the Sensex today were led by Dr Reddy's Lab down by 3.28 per cent closing at Rs 1,440.50 points after huge rise yesterday, Reliance Energy too dipped by 2.22 per cent at Rs 600, HDFC bank closed 2.17 per cent lower at Rs 740.75, Bharti Tele was down by 2.11 per cent at Rs 378.85, Tata Motors closed 1.31 per cent down at Rs 905.70, Maruti closed lower by 1.20 per cent at Rs 837.10, TCS closed 1.08 per cent lower at Rs 1,873.15, Satyam Computers closed 0.97 per cent down at Rs 809.40, Hero Honda closed 0.75 per cent lower at Rs 887.40 and Infosys Technologies closed 0.69 per cent lower at Rs 2,896.90.

The top gainers on the Sensex other than metal stocks were SBI up by 2.75 per cent at Rs 974.70; ACC, the cement major closed 2.24 per cent up at Rs 761, Bajaj Auto closed up by 1.96 per cent at Rs 2,733.20, Reliance gained by 0.82 per cent at Rs 777.15 amidst there huge block deals on the NSE.

ITC, the FMCG giant gained 0.74 per cent at Rs 178.10, Gujarat Ambuja Cements too gained by 0.47 per cent at Rs 96.20, L&T got a gain of 0.23 per cent at Rs 2,392 and Ranbaxy Lab too gained by 0.18 per cent at Rs 393.15.

The market breadth in the broader market was better today with 1,084 scrips advancing versus 1,438 declining out of 2,597 scrips traded.

On the Sensex there were 11 scrips advancing versus 19 losing.


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