BSE Sensex: Markets slump in opening trade

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Mumbai, May 22: The Sensex today opened in the green at 14,459.00 on the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) from it's previous close of 14,418.60, but soon slipped in the red by losing 6.42 points at 14,412.18 during early trade, as profit booking emerged at higher levels.

Similarly, the broader Nifty Index also opened higher at 4,263.10 on the National Stock Exchange (NSE) from it's previous close of 4,260.90, but soon tanked by 12.75 points at 4,248.15 during early trade.

''Volatility was the hallmark of the morning session as the barometer Sensitive Index swung sharply either ways. The total turnover on BSE amounted to Rs 707 crore. The market breadth was positive as 837 shares advanced while 759 declined. Among the Sensex pack, 16 advanced while the rest declined,'' market analysts observed.

Public Sector Unit (PSU) engineering major BHEL was the top gainer, up 1.71 per cent to Rs 2681.25, on 31,825 shares.

HDFC Bank was up 1.56 per cent to Rs 1120.25, Reliance Energy is up 1.48 per cent to Rs 559.85 and Tata Steel rose by 1.06 per cent to Rs 629.50.

Index heavyweight Reliance Industries (RIL) was down 0.72 per cent to Rs 1,748 on 1.51 lakh shares.

NTPC was the top loser, down by 1.54 per cent to Rs 153.70 on 71,089 shares.

For the fourth straight day, Bajaj Auto was on a losing streak, declining by 1.53 per cent to Rs 2213.90, as its demerger scheme, announced earlier last week, triggered a flurry of rating downgrades by brokerage houses.

Infosys was down by 1.17 per cent to Rs 1,938, SBI slipped by 1.20 per cent to Rs 1331 and ITC dipped by 0.90 per cent to Rs 169.25.

Asian markets however have opened on a firm note. The Nikkei share average rose by 0.60 per cent or 105.10 points, to 17,661.97 soon after the start of trade today, as Sony Corp continued its recent rally but KDDI Corp and others trimmed recent gains.

Taiwan's Taiwan Weighted advanced by 0.64 per cent or 52.07 points to 8,193.66, while Singapore's Straits Times gained 0.71 per cent or 24.97 points, to 3,539.46. South Korea's Seoul Composite rose 0.45 per cent or 7.34 points, to 1,635.54.

The Standard&Poor's 500, the broadest measure of the US stock market and the one most closely followed by professionals on Wall Street, closed just shy of a record high yesterday, as fresh takeover announcements lifted US stocks. It gained 2.35 points or 0.2 per cent to end at 1,525.10 points.

The blue-chip Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 13.65 points or 0.1 points to 13,542.88. The technology-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index jumped 20.34 or 0.8 per cent, to 2,578.79.

Crude prices soared today and crossed USD 66 per barrel. Reports of fresh violence at Nigeria, Israel and Lebanon coupled with US refineries increasing production to meet the coming gasoline summer demand perked up crude prices, experts opined.

Crude-oil futures for light sweet crude for June delivery closed at USD 66.27 per barrel, higher by USD 1.33 per barrel or 2.05 per cent on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The expiration of the June crude futures contract tomorrow also likely helped exaggerate the move in oil. Any sharp rise from these level, may put brakes to the ongoing rally, analysts explained.


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