Friday, May 8, 2009

Profit booking pulls Sensex below 12,000-mark

Investors sought to book profits at the Indian equities markets Friday, pulling down a key index 240 points and below the 12,000-mark after touching an intra-day high of 12,180.07 points.

The 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), which opened at 12,092.97 points, lost 240.51 points or 1.98 percent from its previous close to end trade at 11,876.43 points.

Similarly, the S&P CNX Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) lost 1.72 percent to close at 3,620.7 points.

The broader market indices also closed lower, with the BSE midcap index moving down 0.17 percent and the BSE smallcap index gaining 0.32 percent.

The Sensex touched an intra-day high of 12,180.07 points and a low of 11,765.06 points.

Of the 13 sectoral indices on the BSE, the indices for banking and metals took the biggest hit while consumer durables stocks gained the most.

There were only four gainers on the Sensex: Jaiprakash Associates, up 2.53 percent at Rs.142.10; Hindustan Unilever, up 0.98 percent at Rs.232.90; L&T, up 0.42 percent at Rs.990.80; and Grasim, up 0.03 percent at Rs.1,775.20.

Losers included Wipro, down 6.59 percent at Rs.355; ICICI Bank, down 5.19 percent at Rs.520.60; Reliance Infra, down 5.07 percent at Rs.769.15; and Sterlite, down 4.93 percent at Rs.491.95.

The market breadth was uncannily mixed, with both advances and declines at 1,266 while 91 stocks remained unchanged.

Companies that were most traded in rupee terms included HDFC, Reliance Industries, ICICI and Tata Steel.

In other Asian markets, the Hang Seng, a key index of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, ended trade 171.98 points or 1 percent higher at 17,389.87 points.

The Nikkei, a key index of the Tokyo Stock Exchange, gained 47.13 points to shut shop at 9,432.83 points.

European markets were trading marginally higher with the FTSE in Britain ruling 67.45 points up at 4,466.13 points and its French peer CAC 40 trading 71.65 points higher at 3,323.17 points.

Data with the market watchdog, Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), showed foreign funds were net buyers Friday lapping up scrips worth $79.9 million.

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