The NSE Nifty skidded 1% on Thursday as a government share sale in Oil and Natural Gas Corp to raise at least USD 2.5 billion drew investors away from the secondary market.
Banks extended losses for a second day after economic growth slowed to its weakest pace in almost three years in the December quarter as high interest rates and rising input costs hurt investment and manufacturing.
State Bank of India, the country's largest lender, fell 1%, while rivals ICICI Bank
The BSE benchmark slipped 184.08 points or 1.04% to 17,568.60. Meanwhile the NSE benchmark lost 1.06% or 57 points to 5,328.20.
Leading car maker Maruti Suzuki
Ahead of their sales numbers, Hero Motocorp gained 0.75% while Bajaj Auto and M&M fell 1-2%. Tata Motors was down just 0.3%.
ONGC gained as much as 1% after the government commenced a one-day auction to sell a 5% stake in the country's largest oil producer at a floor price of Rs 290 a share. The stock later came off and was down 0.5% to Rs 292.
"ONGC will suck money from the market," said Hitash Dang, vice president at Jaypee Capital.
Foreign funds, which have bought Indian shares worth $7 billion since the end of December, are expected to bid heavily for ONGC shares, traders said.
Top engineering conglomerate L&T
Index heavyweight Reliance Industries and Infosys were down 1.5%. Realty firm DLF tanked 3.6%.
Most active shares: SBI, Reliance Capital, HDIL, IFCI, L&T, HDIL, Infosys
(With inputs from Reuters)
At 11:45 hours IST: Sensex under pressure; RIL, Infosys, ICICI Bank lose
The market continued to trade lower, weighed down by index heavyweights Reliance, ICICI Bank and Infosys. L&T, BHEL, SBI and Bharti too were under pressure while Maruti accelerated smartly post February sales numbers.
The Sensex rose 122 points to 17,630.78 and the Nifty fell 36 points at 5,349.15. However, the Nifty March futures continued to trade with 48 points premium at 5,394 on reports that traders are betting on the UP election results to be in favour of Congress.
DLF and BHEL topped the selling list, losing 3% each. ICICI Bank, Wipro and Axis Bank tumbled over 2%.
Index heavyweights Infosys and Reliance Industries were down 1.55%; SBI and L&T dropped 1.3%.
HDFC Bank, ITC, Bharti Airtel, M&M, Bajaj Auto and NTPC declined about a percent.
ONGC fell 0.8%. Its auction of equity shares has opened today. Government fixed floor price for bidding at Rs 290 a share and will sell 5% stake via this auction for mopping up more than Rs 12,000 crore.
Shares of country’s largest car maker Maruti Suzuki gained more than 4% after company’s February sales climbed 6% to 1.18 lakh units year-on-year. Hero Motocorp and Tata Motors were up 1% ahead of monthly sales numbers.
Coal India, Sun Pharma, Tata Power and Hindalco moved up 1%.
The market breadth was marginally negative; about 1085 shares advanced while 1247 shares declined on the BSE.
In the second line shares, Infotech Enterprises shot up 14%. MTNL, HMT, Dish TV India and Rallis India gained 5-6% while Shree Global, BGR Energy, PTC India, Responsive Industries and Areva T&D dropped 3-5%.
Smallcap like Disa India was locked at 20% upper circuit after quarterly numbers. Sundaram Multi, Mercator, Foseco India and Navin Fluorine rallied 6-7% whereas Oriental Hotels, M and B Switchgear, PFL Infotech, Surana Corp and Jagatjit Industries lost 4-6%.
Further fall in banks, capital goods and technology stocks helped Sensex extend its losses. Investors may have opted to book profits and use funds for buying ONGC shares in offer for sale by government via auction route. Another reason may be that Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke's comments
MARKETS-INDIA-STOCKS:BSE Sensex falls, ONGC rises 1 pct
The BSE Sensex shed over 150 points on Thursday as investors shift their focus to a government share sale in Oil and Natural Gas Corp aiming to raise at least USD 2.5 billion.
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