The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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New-issue roar fails to muffle old shares’ wail

Mumbai, March 11: Heavy selling, coupled with a lack of interest in the old-economy and technology shares, sent the BSE sensex on a 109-point tumble today.

While the technology sector has been under pressure due to the outsourcing tirade in the US, reports about the California government planning to tax Infosys Technologies fuelled the bearish sentiment.

Steel shares were adversely affected due to the government move to check steel prices. Brokers said similar moves to check cement prices resulted in heavy selling in these shares as well. This resulted in a drop in share prices of ACC, Gujarat Ambuja and Grasim Industries.

Moreover, retail operators and local funds have booked profits ahead of the financial year-end. After a net buying of Rs 357 crore on Monday, foreign institutional investors (FIIs) also slowed down their activities, aiding the downtrend.

The 30-share BSE index opened lower at 5737.69 and moved in a range of 5763.71 and 5634.48 before closing at 5649.86, registering a fall of 1.90 per cent. The sensex has lost a whopping 285.33 points or 4.81 per cent in the past three sessions.

Tata Motors was a major loser as market players reacted negatively to its intention of raising funds of up to $500 million from international markets. Fears of an equity dilution saw the scrip plummeting by Rs 17.10 to Rs 486.05.

While bank, PSU and refining shares witnessed setbacks on institutional sales, HLL and Dr Reddy’s saw spirited buying. HLL, which has been wilting under selling pressure in recent times, saw bargain hunting resulting in a gain of Rs 4.95 to end at Rs 154.30.

The volume of business was lower at Rs 2,380.07 crore from Rs 2,481.08 crore on Wednesday. Satyam was the top-traded share with a turnover of Rs 189.49 crore followed by Tisco at Rs 182.22 crore and Tata Motors at Rs 161.77 crore.

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