Sensex resumes year on positive note

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Mumbai, Jan 1: The Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) sensitive index began the first day of the new year 2008 with a marginal gain and hit a high of 20394.89, gaining 107.90 points in late morning trade on selective buying.

The benchmark Sensex started the day slightly higher by 38.28 points at 20325.27 over its previous close of 20286.99 owing to low activity in the global markets due to the new year celebrations. The broad-based Nifty at the National Stock Exchange (NSE) gained 21.55 points to touch 6160.15 from its previous close of 6138.60 in the late morning session of trading. Nifty opened marginally low at 6136.75 and dipped to 6109.85 in early trade but later traded in a positive gap.

The market traded in a narrow range in mid-morning trade. The market breadth was strong. BSE Mid-Cap and BSE Small-Cap indices struck record highs in the late morning trade. Asian markets were closed today on account of the New Year holiday.

The BSE Mid-Cap index rose 1.70 per cent while the BSE Small-Cap index gained 3.19 per cent to hit a record high at 13776. The BSE Mid-Cap index struck an all time high of 9934.89. Both these indices outperformed the Sensex.

The market breadth was strong on BSE with 2322 shares advancing as compared to 424 that declined. Nineteen remained unchanged. Among the Sensex pack, 18 advanced while the rest declined.

ITC jumped 4.18 per cent to Rs 219.10 on high volumes of 10.18 lakh shares. It was the top gainer from the Sensex pack. As per reports, ITC's subsidiary Fortune Park Hotels plans to invest around Rs 130 crore in three or four hotels in Bangalore, Coimbatore and Kolkata.

Reliance Energy gained 2 per cent to Rs 2177. As per reports, the company hopes to bag Rs 15,000 crore worth orders in fiscal 2008 and plans to bid for 7,000-8,000 MW projects. Tata Steel was up 1.08 per cent to Rs 944 and ACC was up 1.10 per cent to Rs 1035.75.

But, Reliance Industries was down 0.29 per cent to Rs 2875 with 1.09 lakh shares trading on the BSE counters. Shares of Bharti Airtel slipped 2.07 per cent to Rs 974 and was the biggest loser among the Sensex pack. The stock slipped on profit booking after surging 5.84 per cent yesterday.

IT pivotals were subdued. TCS was down 1.85 per cent to Rs 1063, Wipro was down 0.98 per cent to Rs 520.45, and Satyam Computers and Infosys were also trading low among the IT pack.

IFCI surged 5.13 per cent to Rs 97.80 after Reserve Bank of India announced that foreign funds can buy equity shares and convertible debentures of IFCI through primary and secondary markets up to 74 per cent of the capital of the company.

US markets ended the year 2007 on a negative note as tech stocks were hit by profit-takers, and falling oil prices sent energy shares lower on December 31, 2007.

In the calendar year 2007, the BSE Sensex surged 6500.08 points or 47.14 per cent to 20286.99, as compared to 13786.91 as on December 29, 2006. It was the fourth best performer in terms of world market. The S&P CNX Nifty vaulted 2172.20 or 54.76 per cent in 2007.

The National Stock Exchange will launch mini derivative futures and options based on S&P CNX Nifty index from today, with a lot size of 20.

As per provisional data, foreign institutional investors (FIIs) purchased shares worth a net Rs 516.06 crore, while domestic institutional investors (DIIs) were net sellers of shares worth Rs 442.99 crore on December 31, 2007.


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