Six out of 10 stocks beat Sensex in recovery

76 stocks gain 50% or more from March lows


 Aarati Krishnan

Did you buy into stocks when the BSE Sensex hovered at the 14,800 mark in mid-March?

If you didn't, you probably have reason to regret your decision. While you've been on the sidelines, the BSE Sensex has gained 12 per cent from its March 18 low and the BSE 500 has managed a 14 per cent return.

These numbers seem tame in comparison to gains managed by some B group stocks, of whom 76 stocks have managed gains of 50 per cent or more.

Stocks that have gained in value over this period have easily outnumbered those that lost ground. As many as 1044 of the 1200 NSE listed stocks, or nine out of every ten, have posted gains from their March 18 levels. As many as 723 stocks have beaten the Sensex (up 12 per cent) over this period.

Orchid Chemicals (up 127 per cent from March 18), Harrisons Malayalam (94 per cent), Gemini Communications (93 per cent), Mercator Lines (86 per cent), IL&FS Investsmart (80 per cent) and Praj Industries (78 per cent) are some of the better known names from the list of top gainers, which is dominated by mid and small-cap stocks.

Gainers list

Among the large caps, Tata Steel (up 40 per cent), Tata Chemicals (40 per cent), Cairn India (39 per cent) and Infosys (39 per cent) lead the gainers list. Though there is little other evidence of any sectoral bias in the gainers, small-sized software and metal companies have been in favour.

Did stocks and sectors that declined the most, lead the recovery? Trends have been quite divergent. While the beaten down software stocks have recovered quite sharply, thanks to a weaker rupee, cement, real estate and select capital goods stocks have headed southwards, even from their levels in March. Thermax (down 18 per cent from March 18), Ultra Tech Cement (16 per cent down), Ambuja Cement (down 14 per cent), Grasim (down 13 per cent) are stocks that have headed down since March, despite the broader market recovery