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Markets remain calm

Mumbai, Dec. 19: It was supposed to unravel what caused the securities scam of 2001, but the JPC report has virtually no takers in the market, with brokers labelling it ‘a political witch-hunt’ and ‘a non-event’.

“There was nothing new in the report that we in the markets or the investing public didn’t know,” a fund manager affiliated to a premier mutual fund said. The JPC report is irrelevant and there is no “smoking gun,” he added.

The report has apportioned former big bull Ketan Parekh as the chief villain of the securities scam and asked the Sebi to investigate the role played in it by companies, which saw massive price rigging of shares.

“The report will keep Sebi very busy,” some analysts said, agreeing with the panel’s observation that the finance ministry was responsible for the mess in Unit Scheme-64.

“Personally, I will not worry about the report as it is not a report on the economy but a political statement,” said a stockbroker with broking outfits in the two premier bourses, the BSE and NSE.

“It is just a waste of time,” said a dealer who was not willing to be quoted and wondered whether the report shed light on something that the Sebi and the government did not know.

“The market will absorb the report in the next few days and decide its next course of action,” prominent BSE broker Ramesh Damani said on the basis of television reports, admitting he was still to lay hands on the contents of the report.

The initial reaction of a host of market players was that the report has not suggested any sweeping action and its tenor is pretty mild.

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