The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Markets swing to vote voltage

Mumbai, May 5: Markets see-sawed between a surge and a slide today after pollsters gave the Vajpayee government more than a good chance to scrape through to Parliament with a tally enough to govern.

The mood swings were sharp on Dalal Street, where the BSE sensex ended at 5686.19 in a 39-point gain over its previous finish of 5647.15. The index vacillated between a high of 5695.18 and a low of 5648.64.

The rupee, under pressure over the past few days, rallied to 44.71 against the dollar, a 12-paise rebound from the level of 44.83 that it had plumbed two days back.

The gains arising from fresh export-dollar sales amid renewed weakness overseas were offset by an acute shortage in the spot section and rising crude prices.

On the bourses, it was the second straight day of gains as the ruling coalition’s prospects appeared to look up. Exit polls in the evening vindicated the confidence market operators have in the return of the NDA.

“Share prices of pivotals will rise for some time, until profit booking rears its head after a few days,” said Arun Kejriwal of Kejriwal Research and Investment Services.

Buying was seen in several sensex movers. Leading the pack was ACC, Bharti Tele, HDFC, HDFC Bank, Hero Honda, Infosys, L&T, ONGC, Reliance, State Bank, Tata Motors and Wipro. Cement shares turned hot on reports of higher April sales and robust ACC results.

Technology shares had a good day, too. Geometric, Infosys and Wipro, fairly subdued after their bonus announcements, advanced on moderate buying by individuals.

The fact that foreign investors were upbeat also inspired local players. The bullish trend was clear as the BSE specified group saw 138 shares, including 23 from the sensex, ending as gainers; only 59 finished with losses.

The volume of trading was higher at Rs 2470.80 crore from Rs 1889.39 crore on Tuesday following a block deal of nearly 1.16 crore shares of HDFC at a price of Rs 642.01.

The share was the turnover topper with a tally of Rs 752.09 crore. Market watchers say the block deal could be a transfer of holdings between FIIs. The HDFC stock rose Rs 23.90 to Rs 645.15 after the deal.

Grasim jumped by Rs 35.50 to Rs 1187.25, Infosys by Rs 44.10 to Rs 5260.50, Larsen & Toubro by Rs 19.35 to Rs 583.40, Wipro by Rs 11.20 to Rs 1605.20 and HDFC Bank by Rs 6.15 to Rs 382.10. Among losers, Hindalco shed Rs 6.80 at Rs 1096.15 and ICICI Bank Rs 5.25 at Rs 301.60.

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