Efforts being made to reach disinvestment target: Finance ministry

The proposals for 5% government stake dilution in BHEL and 10% in Nalco are in various stages before seeking the government approval. Besides, the government has already approved disinvestment in ONGC, SAIL, HCL and NBCC

New Delhi: The government today said efforts are being made to achieve the disinvestment target of Rs40,000 crore for the current fiscal and the proposals of stake dilution in engineering PSU Bharat Heavy Electricals (BHEL) and aluminium producer National Aluminium Company (Nalco) are under consideration, reports PTI.

"The Budget estimate for disinvestment proceeds are Rs40,000 crore for the year 2011-12. All efforts are being made to reach the disinvestment target for the current fiscal year," minister of state for finance SS Palanimanickam said in a written reply to Rajya Sabha.

Mr Palanimanickam said the proposals for 5% government stake dilution in BHEL and 10% in Nalco "are in various stages before seeking the government approval."

He said the government has already approved disinvestment in ONGC, Steel Authority of India (SAIL), Hindustan Copper (HCL) and National Building and Construction Corporation (NBCC).

The government has given approval for sale of its 5% stake in SAIL along with issue of 5% fresh equity. It has also approved disinvestment of 5% of government's holding in ONGC.

So far in the current fiscal the government has been able to mop up over Rs1,100 crore by offloading stake in the Power Finance Corporation (PFC).

Last fiscal, the government had raised Rs22,763 crore from sale of equity in public sector enterprises against a target of Rs40,000 crore. It offloaded equity in SJVN, Engineers India, Coal India, PowerGrid and Shipping Corporation of India.

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SBI NPA provisioning up three-fold between 2008-09 and 2010-11

The provision in 2010-11 includes a countercyclical buffer of Rs2,330 crore toward achieving the 70% Provision Coverage Ratio prescribed by the RBI over-and-above the prudential provision, finance minister Pranab Mukherjee said

New Delhi: The government today said provisioning against the non-performing assets (NPAs) of State Bank of India (SBI) increased more than three-fold to Rs8,792 crore in 2010-11 from Rs2,474 crore in 2008-09 due to a rise in bad debt, reports PTI.

The provision in 2010-11 includes a countercyclical buffer of Rs2,330 crore toward achieving the 70% Provision Coverage Ratio prescribed by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) over-and-above the prudential provision, finance minister Pranab Mukherjee said in a written reply to a question in the Rajya Sabha.

The NPAs have gone up substantially in agriculture, small scale industries and corporates, he said.

During 2010-11, outstanding loans of Rs210.34 crore given by SBI to Shah Alloys turned into NPAs. At the same time, an outstanding loan of Rs193.99 crore to Indorama Synthetics became a NPA, he said.

Meanwhile, in a separate written reply, minister of state for finance Namo Narain Meena said the government has received a proposal from SBI for raising capital through various instruments-Qualified Institutional Placement (QIP), Preferential Allotment, a Follow-On Public Offer and a rights issue.

The proposal is under examination, Mr Meena added.

In response to another question, Mr Meena said in line with the principles of preserving the long-term value of the country's foreign exchange reserve in terms of purchasing power, minimising risk and volatility in returns and maintaining liquidity, the RBI holds foreign currency assets (FCAs) in major convertible currencies' instruments.

These include deposits of other countries' central banks, the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) and top-rated foreign commercial banks, besides securities representing the debt of sovereigns and supranational institutions with a residual maturity not exceeding 10 years, to provide a strong bias toward capital preservation and liquidity, Mr Meena said.

At the end of March 2011, Mr Meena said out of the total foreign currency assets of $274.3 billion, $142.1 billion was invested in securities, $126.9 billion was deposited with other central banks, the BIS and IMF and $5.3 billion was placed with External Asset Managers.

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Share prices overcome negatives: Tuesday Closing Report

Nifty to see the level of 5,210 if it closes strongly above 5,060

The market closed higher for a second day in a row, despite news that the country's GDP grew at its slowest pace in the past six quarters. The indices made higher highs, higher lows and even closed higher from the previous day.

The current uptrend may sustain in case the indices are able to maintain their intra-day highs for a few more trading sessions. The market may see a volatile upmove till 5,100 on the Nifty. However, if the index closes strongly above 5,060, we can see it reach the 5,210 level.

The market was supported by large volumes amounting to over 650 million shares, which was above the 10-day moving average.

Taking cues from the global markets, the Indian market started the day higher, with the Nifty up 25 points at 4,915 and the Sensex at 16,338, up 53 points. Realty, technology, banking and metal stocks boosted the upmove in early trade.

News about the fall in economic growth to 7.7% in the June quarter, from 8.8% in the previous corresponding quarter, saw the indices give up most of their early gains and they fell to their intra-day lows around noon. The Nifty fell to 4,928 and the Sensex to 16,443 at the day's low.

However, buying in select sectors lifted the momentum to a higher trajectory again in post-noon trade. The market continued its upward journey amid a fair bit of volatility. The Nifty crossed its psychological level of 5,000 to touch the day's high at 5,016 in the closing minutes of trading and the Sensex scaled to its mid-session high a short while earlier at 16,715.

The market finished trade a tad below those levels, with the Nifty gaining 81 points at 5,001 and the Sensex closing at 16,677, up 260 points.

The Indian market will be closed over the next two days for the local holidays and reopen on Friday.

The advance-decline ratio on the National Stock Exchange (NSE) was a strong 1203:475.

The broader indices also had an almost equal share in today's rally as the BSE Mid-cap index gained 1.44% and the BSE Small-cap index rose 1.10%.

BSE Metal (up 3.74%), BSE Realty (up 3.62%), BSE Bankex (up 2.24%), BSE IT (up 2.08%) and BSE TECk (up 1.71%) were the top sectoral gainers today. BSE Fast Moving Consumer Goods (down 0.32%) was the lone loser.

The major gainers on the Sensex were DLF (up 6.42%), Jindal Steel (up 5.34%), Sun Pharma (up 5.16%), Tata Steel (up 4.79%) and Hindalco Industries (up 4.34%). The major losers were ONGC (down 4.29%), ITC (down 0.97%), Tata Power (down 0.35%), Larsen & Toubro (down 0.31%) and Bharti Airtel (down 0.16%).

Sesa Goa (up 11.05%), DLF (up 6.78%), HCL Technologies (up 6.03%), Jaiprakash Associates (up 5.92%) and Jindal Steel (up 5.19%) topped the Nifty list, while ONGC (down 4.09%), GAIL (down 0.83%), ITC (down 0.77%), BPCL (down 0.76%) and Bharti Airtel (down 0.35%) ended at the bottom of the index.

Markets in Asia, with the exception of the China, settled higher on support from positive economic news from the US overnight and the report of the merger of two Greece banks. The easing of slowdown worries following a slew of good economic news has boosted investor sentiment.

The Hang Seng jumped by 1.71%, the Nikkei 225 gained by 1.16%, the Seoul Composite put on 0.78% and the Taiwan Weighted climbed 0.90%. But the Shanghai Composite was weaker by 0.38%. Markets in Singapore, Malaysia and the Philippines were closed for a local festival holiday.

Back home, foreign institutional investors were net buyers of stocks worth Rs366.19 crore on Monday. On the other hand, domestic institutional investors were net sellers of equities worth Rs325.50 crore.

HCL Technologies has entered into a partnership with Basware Corporation for induction of the Finnish software provider's purchase-to-pay solutions to help improve its own customer delivery processes and achieve cost reductions. HCL will leverage Basware's invoice automation, procurement and connectivity solutions for process enhancement and increased cost reduction to help its clients improve productivity. The stock rose 6.03% to close at Rs414 on the NSE.

Kolkata-based FMCG firm Emami said it is setting up a new plant in the north-east of the country at an investment of up to Rs40 crore as part of its expansion plan. Construction work on the new plant is likely to start in the next two months, the company said, and added that it is expected to be operational within two years. The stock settled at Rs464.50, up 1.17% on the NSE.

Anil Ambani group company Reliance Power has sought the approval of shareholders to raise funds through the sale of up to 25% of its equity to institutional investors for funding projects. It has also sought their nod to mop up funds through the issue of securities in international markets, the company said in its annual report for 2010-11. Reliance Power closed 1.92% higher at Rs85.05 on the NSE.

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