Bulls rule the roost, Sensex up 5 percent (Roundup)

March 13th, 2009 - 6:47 pm ICT by IANS  

Mumbai, March 13 (IANS) Bulls had a free run at Indian equities markets Friday as investors took heart from the strong gains posted by world markets. A key index shut shop almost 5 percent higher than its previous close.
The 30-scrip Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) sensitive index (Sensex), which opened at 8,480.74 points, rose 412.86 points or 4.95 percent to end at 8,756.61 points.

Similarly, the S&P CNX Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) gained 3.89 percent from its last close to end at 2,719.25 points.

The BSE midcap index was ruling 2.96 percent higher, while the BSE smallcap index was up 1.97 percent.

“In a bearish market like the current one, such rallies are mostly because of short-covering. This morning the gap between Nifty and Nifty futures (the futures and options segment of Nifty) was as much as 10 percent. So people had to buy to cover their positions,” said Jagannadham Thunguntula, equity head at SMC Capitals.

All the 13 sectoral indices on the exchange ended in positive terrain, with the indices for realty, metal and banking stocks gained the most.

As many as 28 scrips gained on the 30 composite Sensex. The top gainers were: DLF, up 11.47 percent at Rs.152.55; Tata Motors, up 10.72 percent at Rs.161.60; Tata Power, up 9.18 percent at Rs.662.85; and ICICI Bank, up 8.6 percent at Rs.308.70.

The two losing stocks on the Sensex were: NTPC, down 2.04 percent at Rs.170.20; and Sun Pharma, down 0.36 percent at Rs.1,021.80.

The overall market sentiment was positive, with 1,583 stocks advancing, 854 scrips declining and 114 remaining unchanged.

Foreign funds, however, remained sceptical about Indian markets and sold shares to the tune of $24.6 million Friday, compared to $3 million bought Thursday.

In Asian markets, the Hang Seng, a key index of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, closed 4.37 percent higher to end at 12,525.80 points.

European markets, which came online before Indian bourses ended trade, were also in the green, with the FTSE in Britain ruling 1.74 percent higher than its last closing figure.

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