Chennai : India | Sep 19, 2012 at 11:34 PM PDT
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Market Sinks

Realty, bank stocks decline
DATE: 20/09/2012
Key benchmark indices trimmed losses after weakening once again in morning trade tracking lower Asian stocks. Political crisis following Trinamool Congress, a key UPA ally, decision to withdraw its support to the government also weighed on sentiment. The barometer index, BSE Sensex, was down 90.67 points or 0.49%, up about 115 points from the day's low and off close to 20 points from the day's high. The market breadth was weak. Index heavyweight and cigarette maker ITC trimmed initial gains. Another index heavyweight Reliance Industries (RIL) extended initial losses.
Realty stocks fell after a key ally of government; Trinamool Congress removed its support from the government opposing government's decision to allow up to 51% foreign direct investment in multi-brand retail trade putting in jeopardy the prospects of government's key reform measure. Bank stocks fell across the board on profit booking after recent gains.
The market trimmed losses after a weak start. It once again trimmed losses after weakening in morning trade.
Asian stock markets retreated Thursday, failing to hold on to monetary-easing inspired gains from the previous session, with energy firms declining along with U.S. crude futures.
Political worries heightened after ruling Congress party on Wednesday said it won't reverse a controversial decision to allow foreign supermarkets to invest in India as part of other market-opening measures. But it may be willing to make some compromises, including partially rolling back recent diesel-price increases and limits on subsidized gas.
The measures, part of a package unveiled last week in a gesture to regain investor confidence, caused a government ally, the Trinamool Congress, to threaten Tuesday to pull its support from the coalition by the end of this week. Trinamool, on whom Congress depends for its majority in Parliament, says allowing foreign retailers like Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Carrefour SA to open supermarkets here will hurt smaller Indian retailers.
Raising diesel prices and reducing the supply of low-cost gas, the party argues, hurts India's poor, who spend a higher percentage of their income on fuel. Trinamool's head, Mamata Banerjee, who is also chief minister of West Bengal state, vowed Wednesday to continue to oppose letting foreign supermarkets come to India. Ms. Banerjee had set Friday as the deadline to pull her ministers from the government to allow "a window for compromise." Congress can survive for now without Ms. Banerjee's support as Parliament isn't in session. But the government could face a no-confidence vote in December, when the legislature reconvenes.
The government last week announced liberalization of foreign investment rules in retail, aviation and broadcasting sectors. While the government has allowed up to 51% foreign direct investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail trading (MBRT), in the aviation sector the government has allowed foreign airlines to acquire up to 49% stake in Indian carriers.
At 10:20 IST, the BSE Sensex was down 90.67 points or 0.49% to 18,405.32. The index plunged 204.08 points at the day's low of 18,291.93 at the onset of the trading session, its lowest level since 14 September 2012. The index dropped 72.36 points at the day's high of 18,423.65 in morning trade.
The S&P CNX Nifty was down 29.95 points or 0.53% to 5,570.10. The index hit a high of 5,571.40. The index hit a low of 5,534.90 in intraday trade, its lowest level since 14 September 2012.
The market breadth, indicating the overall health of the market, was weak. On BSE, 1171 shares fell and 760 shares rose. A total of 95 shares were unchanged.
From the 30-share Sensex pack, 18 stocks fell and rest of them rose.
Index heavyweight and cigarette maker ITC rose 0.39% to Rs 255.10. The stock had scaled a record high of Rs 272.50 in intraday trade on 14 September 2012.
Index heavyweight Reliance Industries (RIL) declined 1.44%. RIL has bought back 3.9 crore shares for about of Rs 2793.51 crore till 4 September 2012 under its ongoing share buyback program. RIL has set maximum buyback price of Rs 870 per share. The company has set aside Rs 10440 crore for share buyback. The buyback program opened on 1 February 2012 and closes on 19 January 2013. RIL chairman Mukesh Ambani said at the company's Annual General Meeting in June 2012 that the company's buyback program represents a highly accretive use of cash by the company and it will supplement earnings growth from operations, for higher EPS (earnings per share), in the near future.
Realty stocks fell after a key ally of government; Trinamool Congress removed its support from the government opposing government's decision to allow up to 51% foreign direct investment in multi-brand retail trade putting in jeopardy the prospects of government's key reform measure. Investors bet that retail real estate will get a boost from the entry of foreign supermarket chains in the country. DLF, Unitech, D B Realty, Anant Raj Industries and HDIL dropped by between 1.96% to 4.03%.
Bank stocks fell across the board on profit booking after recent gains. State Bank Of India dropped 1.73% after bank said that it has decided to revise downwards its Base Rate by 25 basis points (bps) from 10.00% per annum to 9.75% per annum effective from September 20, 2012.
Axis Bank fell 2.16%. The bank said Schroder Singapore Holding has acquired 25% stake in its subsidiary, Axis Asset Management Company (Axis AMC). The transaction provides Axis AMC access to Schroders' global distribution network and to advise overseas funds invested in Indian securities, Axis Bank said in a statement. The bank, however, did not disclose the deal value. Further, it enables Schroders to participate in the growth opportunity represented by the Indian mutual fund market through a strategic relationship with a leading private sector bank, it said. Longer term, in addition to distributing Axis AMC's funds internationally, there will be an opportunity to distribute Schroders funds in India through Axis AMC's distribution network, it added. Schroder Singapore Holding is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Schroders, which is UK's largest asset management company. It has operations in 26 countries.
HDFC Bank and ICICI Bank dropped by between 0.22% to 1.38%.
Among other PSU bank stocks, Bank of Baroda, Bank of India, Punjab National Bank, Canara Bank and Union Bank of India shed by between 1.05% to 4.15%.
Foreign institutional investors (FIIs) continued to make heavy purchases of Indian stocks for the third day in a row on Tuesday, 18 September 2012, as per the provisional data. FIIs bought shares worth a net Rs 1049.18 crore on Tuesday, 18 September 2012, as per the provisional data from the stock exchanges. FIIs bought shares worth a net Rs 2315.10 crore from the secondary equity markets on Monday, 17 September 2012, as per data from Securities & Exchange Board of India (Sebi). FIIs had bought shares worth a net Rs 2859.80 crore from the secondary equity markets on Friday, 14 September 2012.
On the macro front, consumer price inflation in India remains high. Provisional annual inflation rate based on all India general Consumer Price Indices (CPI) (Combined) for August 2012 on point to point basis (August 2012 over August 2011) stood at 10.03% as compared to 9.86% (final) for July 2012. The data was released by the Ministry of Statistics & Programme Implementation during trading hours Tuesday, 18 September 2012.


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