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New-look sensex off to a sedate start

Mumbai, Nov. 10: The new-look BSE sensex gained 27 points today and appeared tantalisingly close to the magical 5000-mark, on a day marked by a technical glitch at the National Stock Exchange that saw its traded turnover plunge.

However, today’s trading clearly belonged to BSE’s 30-share sensitive index which closed at 4998.57, after losing 2.5 per cent of its value in three previous sessions.

Backed by late buying by foreign funds and operators, stocks rebounded from their day’s lows and most of the key scrips even scored impressive gains, helping the sensex break its three-session string of losses.

Today five new shares — ONGC, Wipro, Bharti Tele, HDFC Bank and Tata Power — were included in the free-float index.

The free-float index takes into consideration only the non-promoter holding of the scrip in question.

The shares excluded from the main index are light-weight scrips like HCL Technologies, Glaxo Smithkline, Castrol India, Colgate Palmolive and Nestle.

ONGC has the highest market capitalisation in the Indian stock markets. It was never a constituent of the sensex because around 90 per cent of the equity is controlled by the government.

NSE dealers were for the most part twiddling their thumbs as a technical glitch halted trading at the premier bourse.

Mercifully, for investors, the BSE functioned normally on a day when the sensex was hovering in the negative territory for most part of the day.

“So close, yet so far,” sighed a dealer affiliated to a leading institutional brokerage. He was commenting on the sensex closing less than two points below the 5000-mark.

Tata Power and ONGC made their debut as a constituent of the sensex with sharp gains. Tata power gained 6 per cent while ONGC gained 2.8 per cent.

Bharti, HDFC bank and Wipro appeared disoriented.

“It was marked by bargain hunting for most part of the day,” said a portfolio manager affiliated to a leading brokerage here.

The broad-based BSE-100 index shot up 21.97 points to 2578.32 from the previous close of 2556.35.

The BSE-200 index and the dollex-200 were quoted higher at 638.88 and 234.96 at close compared with last weekend’s close of 633.00 and 232.69, respectively. The BSE-500 index also rose 24.27 points to 1963.71 from the previous close of 1939.44 and the dollex-30 finished higher at 906.52 from 901.23 previously.

The volume of business was relatively high at Rs 2489.19 crore from Rs 2312.56 crore last Friday. Tisco remained the top- traded share with the highest turnover of Rs 255.61 crore followed by RIL (Rs 208.62 crore).

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