Sensex near two-month high

The market spurted following steady build-up of fresh positions in the derivatives segment on the first day of May 2008 series. Buoyant corporate results, good rollovers in derivatives from April 2008 contracts to May 2008 contracts and firm global equities laid solid foundation for the rally. Both the benchmark indices - BSE Sensex and S&P CNX Nifty settled above key levels of 17,100 and 5,100. However, the market breadth was negative.

The market had witnessed a bout of volatility in mid-afternoon trade after inflation data was released. The wholesale price index based inflation rose to 7.33% for the week ended 12 April 2008, as against 7.14% in the previous week, data released a little while ago showed.

US stocks rose on Thursday, 24 April 2008, as investors poured into beaten-down financial stocks on growing optimism the worst may be over for banks, and after jobs and manufacturing data pointed to a resilient US economy. European markets were trading higher while Asian markets were mixed today.

The 30-share BSE Sensex galloped 404.90 points or 2.42% at 17,125.98. Sensex hit a high of 17,150.92 in late trade. At the day's high, Sensex rose 429.84 points. The Sensex had last closed above 17,000 mark on 29 February 2008.

The BSE Sensex has gained 2316.49 points or 15.64% from a recent low of 14,809.49 touched on 17 March 2008. However, it is still off 4080.79 points or 19.24% from its all time high of 21,206.77 hit on 10 January 2008.

The broader based S&P CNX Nifty was up 111.85 points or 2.24% at 5,111.85. Nifty May futures were at 5124.90, a premium of 13.05 points as compared to spot closing. Derivative contracts for April 2008 series expired yesterday, 24 April 2008. As per reports, marketwide rollover from April 2008 series to May 2008 series stood at 82% as compared to 79% in the previous series, March 2008 to April 2008. Nifty rollover stood at 71% as compared to 63% in the previous series.

Despite the rally, the market breadth was negative. On BSE with 1474 shares declined as compared to 1242 that advanced. 50 remained unchanged.

The BSE Mid-Cap index was up 0.74% to 7,056.21 and the BSE Small-Cap index slipped 0.15% to 8,727.72. Both these indices underperformed the Sensex.

The total turnover on BSE amounted to Rs 6012 crore as compared to Rs 5,461.43 crore yesterday, 24 April 2008. Turnover in NSE's futures & options segment amounted to Rs 33831.87 crore as compared to Rs 50958.06 crore yesterday, 24 April 2008

All sectoral indices on BSE posted gains. However, only two were able to outperform the Sensex. The BSE Bankex (up 3.33% at 8,868.08), the BSE TecK index (up 3.16% to 3,395.54), outperformed the Sensex.

The BSE PSU index (up 1.47% to 7,837.39), the BSE Auto (up 0.71% at 4,603.56), the BSE Health Care index (up 0.78% at 4,202.48), the BSE Metal index (up 2.41% to 15,735.18), the BSE IT index (up 0.34% to 4,063.37), the BSE Realty index (up 1.40% at 8,149.77), the BSE Power (up 0.90% to 3,309.66), the BSE FMCG index (up 0.72% at 2,407.00), the BSE Capital Goods index (up 0.73% at 13,921.87), the BSE Consumer Durables index (up 0.85% to 4,378.96), and the BSE Oil & Gas index (up 1.58% to 11,554.59), underperformed the Sensex.

Among the 30-member Sensex pack, 21 advanced while the rest declined.

Telecom stocks were in forefront of today's rally. India's top cellular services provider in terms of market capitalisation Bharti Airtel surged 8.99% to Rs 920.10 on high volume of 23.20 lakh shares. It was the top gainer from Sensex pack. Bharti Airtel posted 39.25% rise in net profit to Rs 1792.30 crore on 41.82% jump in total income to Rs 7446.82 crore in Q4 March 2008 over Q4 March 2007.

Reliance Communications (RCom), the country's second biggest cellular services provider in terms of market capitalisation advanced 8.86% to Rs 580. RCom has acquired 90% stake in a UK-based WiMax operator, 'eWave World'. RCom intends to invest $500 million in eWave to build and acquire WiMax networks in the emerging markets of Asia, Europe, Latin America and Africa

Ideal Cellular, India's sixth-largest mobile operator in terms of subscribers, gained 4.71% to Rs 107.80 after it reported 44.60% rise in net profit Rs 278.20 crore on 50.70% rise in net sales to Rs 1972.40 crore in Q4 March 2008 over Q4 March 2007. The results were announced during market hours yesterday, 24 April 2008.

Banking shares rallied despite latest data showing rise in inflation. State bank of India (up 4.51% to Rs 1758.55), HDFC Bank (up 3.34% to Rs 1494.50), and ICICI Bank (up 4.18% to Rs 913), surged.

India's largest private sector company in terms of market capitalisation and oil refiner Reliance Industries (RIL) rose 1.71% to Rs 2,625.05 on 7.96 lakh shares. RIL has got approval from the government for its oil and gas development plan at a field in its D6 block off the east coast. The MA field is estimated to produce 40,000 barrels of oil per day and 240 to 350 million cubic feet of gas per day from second half of 2008, RIL said late on Thursday, 24 April 2008.

The company, which is developing two other gas fields in the same block in the Krishna Godavari basin, is expected to produce up to 80 million cubic metres of gas per day later this year.

Reliance Energy (up 4.47% to Rs 1364.80), HDFC (up 3.42% to Rs 2678), and Tata Steel (up 3.41% to Rs 803), were the other gainers from Sensex pack.

India's second largest cement maker in terms of sales, ACC slipped 1.67% to Rs 784.80 after it reported marginal rise of 0.53% in net profit to Rs 357.54 crore on 7.68% increase in total income to Rs 1861.37 crore in Q1 March 2008 over Q1 March 2007 during market hours yesterday, 24 April 2008. It was the top loser from Sensex pack.

India's largest cement manufacturer in terms of sales Ambuja Cement was down 0.78% to Rs 114.30. During market hours today, the company reported 42.39% decline in net profit to Rs 326.2 crore on 16.72% rise in total income to Rs 1,695.41 crore in Q1 March 2008 over Q1 March 2007.

India's largest dam builder Jaiprakash Associates staged a sharp pullback in late trade and close down by 0.32% to Rs 245.65, after touching low of Rs 234.40 in intra-day trade. The counter saw high volumes of 37.84 lakh shares.

India's top small car maker in terms of sales Maruti Suzuki India slipped 0.81% to Rs 739.90. The company posted 33.63% decline in net profit to Rs 297.68 crore on 9.35% rise in total income to Rs 5069.94 crore in Q4 March 2008 over Q4 March 2007, during market hours yesterday, 24 April 2008.

DLF (down 0.92% to Rs 668.55), Infosys (down 0.65% to Rs 1682), were the other losers from Sensex pack

Reliance Natural Resources was the top traded counter on BSE clocking turnover of Rs 354.40 crore followed by Reliance Capital (Rs 225.30 crore), Bharti Airtel (Rs 210.25 crore), Reliance Communications (Rs 209.20 crore) and Reliance Industries (Rs 207.65 crore) in that order.

Reliance Natural Resources led the volume charts notching volumes of Rs 2.95 crore shares followed by IFCI (1.56 crore shares), Ispat Industries (1.42 crore shares), Nagarjuna Fertlisers & chemicals (1.40 crore shares) and Tata Teleservices (Maharashtra) (1.19 crore shares), in that order.

Fertiliser shares rallied on momentum buying. Chambal Fertilisers & Chemicals (up 7.90% to Rs 71.75), Nagarjuna Fertilisers & Chemicals (up 6.37% to Rs 50.90), Zuari Industries (up 4.71% to Rs 297), Gujarat State Fertilisers Corporation (up 2% to Rs 202.65), and Deepak Fertilisers (up 4.78% to Rs 112.90), surged

Andhra Bank rose 1.70% to Rs 80.80 despite posting 10.46% fall in net profit to Rs 124.25 crore on 22.03% rise in total income rose 22.03% to Rs 1,352.55 crore in Q4 March 2008 over Q4 March 2007. The bank announced results during trading hours today,25 April 2008.

MRF jumped 4.50% to Rs 4580 after reporting 83.60% surge in net profit to Rs 65.62 crore on 12.24% rise in total income to Rs 1220.24 crore in Q2 March 2008 over Q2 March 2007. The company announced the results during trading hours today, 25 April 2008.

ABB declined 0.88% to Rs 1,170.20 despite posting 35.85% rise in net profit to Rs 117.69 crore on 17.03% rise in total income to Rs 1,553.8 crore in Q1 March 2008 over Q1 March 2007. The company announced results during trading hours today,25 April 2008.

Tanla Solutions slipped 0.92% to Rs 520. The company fixed 9 May 2008 as the record date for a 2-for-1 stock split.

Hindustan Construction Company dropped 5% to Rs 124.75 despite posting 37.20% rise in net profit to Rs 108.77 crore on 29.93% growth in total income to Rs 3120.75 crore in FY 2008 over FY 2007. The company announced the results during trading hours today, 25 April 2008.

LIC Housing Finance gained 3.61% to Rs 324.25 after posting 32.48% rise in net profit to Rs 118.1 crore in Q4 March 2008 over Q4 March 2007. The company announced results during trading hours today, 25 April 2008.

Federal-Mogul Goetze (India) jumped 20% to Rs 82.35 after its board deferred a discussion on consideration of right issue and said the same may be considered in the coming future. The company made this announcement after trading hours on 24 April 2008.

Hindustan Zinc gained 5.51% to Rs 669 after it reported 36.68% surge in net profit to Rs 1278 crore on 23.72% growth in total income to Rs 2592 crore in Q4 March 2008 over Q4 March 2007. The company announced the results after trading hours on Thursday, 24 April 2008.

Hero Honda Motors soared 5.75% to Rs 814.5 after the company posted 53.1% surge in net profit to Rs 298.70 crore on 5.9% growth in total income to Rs 2843.79 crore in Q4 March 2008 over Q4 March 2007. The company announced the results after trading hours on Thursday, 24 April 2008.

Gujarat NRE Coke declined 6.75% to Rs 151.90 despite posting 26.1% rise in net profit to Rs 64.20 crore on 112.6% spurt in net sales to Rs 380.64 crore in Q4 March 2008 over Q4 March 2007. The company announced results after trading hours on 24 April 2008.

Titan Industries surged 3.12% to Rs 1121.05 after posting 59.64% surge in net profit to Rs 150.27 crore on 42.21% growth in total income to Rs 3042.86 crore in FY 2008 over FY 2007. The company announced the results during trading hours today, 25 April 2008.

Market may stay cautious ahead of Reserve Bank of India (RBI)'s monetary policy review on 29 April 2008. Analysts are split whether the central bank will raise interest rates.

The near-term market will be driven by the quality of earnings rolled out by corporates in the coming days. Aggregate results of 301 companies showed 18.20% rise in net profit on 23.80% rise in net sales in Q4 March 2008 over Q4 March 2007. There was 29.40% rise in net profit on 24.40% rise in net sales in FY March 2008 over FY March 2007.

European markets, which opened after Indian markets were in green. Key benchmark indices in United Kingdom (up 0.31% to 6,069.20), Germany (up 1.13% to 6,898.11), and France (up 1.23% to 4,990.27), advanced.

Asian markets, which opened before Indian markets, were trading mixed today, 25 April 2008. Japan's Nikkei (up 2.38% at 13,863.47), Singapore's Straits Times (up 0.41% at 3,190.69), South Korea's Seoul Composite (up 1.41% at 1,824.68) rose.

However, Shanghai Composite (down 0.71% to 3557.78), Hong Kong's Hang Seng (down 0.64% at 25,516.78), and Taiwan's Taiwan Weighted (down 0.47% at 8,947.83) slipped.

US markets advanced yesterday, 24 April 2008 as investors focused on the Labor Department data showing weekly unemployment claims dropped and word that Ford had a $100 million profit in the first quarter. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 85.73 points, or 0.67%, to 12,848.95. The Nasdaq Composite index added 23.71 points, or 0.99%, to 2,428.92.

World oil prices, which had threatened to break the $120-a-barrel level, fell further in Asian trading after a strengthening US dollar and rising US crude stockpiles prompted traders to lock in profits. New York's main oil futures contract, light sweet crude for delivery in June, fell 46 cents to $115.60 per barrel.