As we said yesterday, the correction will continue to weigh on the market—unless the Sensex goes above 17,600
The market was range-bound in the afternoon session and ended the day with a marginal gain. The Sensex ended at 17,472, higher by 12 points (0.07%) and the Nifty ended at 5,245, higher by 15 points (0.28%). The bourse started on a higher note, taking a cue from strong Asian markets. However, gains were pared in the morning session and the index traded in a low range till mid-afternoon, when it touched the intraday low.
Although the market rebounded from there, trading was range-bound till the close. Asian stocks rose on Wednesday, as better-than-estimated results from Elpida Memory Inc and Apple Inc boosted confidence over the global economic recovery. Key benchmark indices in China, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan rose by 0.47% to 1.8%. Key benchmark indices in Hong Kong and Singapore fell by 0.29% to 0.52%. US stocks ended higher on Tuesday after some good earnings reports. The Dow rose 25 points (0.23%) to 11,117. The S&P 500 gained 9 points (0.81%) to 1,207. The Nasdaq rose 20.20 points (0.81%) to 2,500. Greece has started discussions with other EU members and the International Monetary Fund to chalk out a plan worth €40 billion-€45 billion for it to exit the debt crisis. The country is struggling to narrow its budgetary deficit with painful austerity measures to convince the market that it will not default on its debt.
Closer home, the prime minister said that India’s economy is expected to grow at 8.25% in the current fiscal. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has said that it will continue using cash reserve ratio (CRR) as a monetary tool. The central bank wants to return to the monetary policy that existed before the financial crisis. It does not want to use the statutory liquidity ratio (SLR) as a monetary policy tool, calling any increase in this measure “retrogressive” as it is a safety pool of money and not a policy instrument. On de-regularising bank saving rates—currently fixed at 3.5%—the RBI said that it has yet to take a decision over this; but it expressed its concerns that de-regularising rates would destabilise the system. Foreign institutional investors were net sellers on Tuesday of Rs156 crore. Domestic institutional investors were net buyers of Rs101 crore. The rupee was strong due to the impact of a weak dollar against major currencies.
Tata Consultancy Services (down 0.5%) will provide Rolls-Royce with a range of engineering services. Electrotherm (up 5%) plans to buy 100% shareholding of Ram Electro Cast at a consideration of up to Rs850 million. Shiva Cement (up 6%) plans to set up a 25MW power plant. Royal Orchid Hotels (up 0.6%) announced that it has opened its new 4-star hotel, Royal Orchid Central Grazia, at Vashi, Navi Mumbai. Unitech (up 2.4%) plans to merge its arms Aditya Property and Unitech Holdings with it. It will demerge its infrastructure and telecom operations into a separate company. GMR Infrastructures (up 2.3%) the holding company of the GMR Group, said that it has added GMR OSE Hungund Hospet Highways and GMR Chennai Outer Ring Road as subsidiary companies. Videocon Industries (up 1.6%) may sell up to 26% stake in the company to foreign players. It said that “many foreign companies are interested in it” and it will dilute stake “when a good price will be available.” Essar Shipping Ports & Logistics (up 3.5%) will invest Rs500 crore and handle 16 million tonnes per annum (tpa) of dry bulk cargo at Paradip Port in Orissa. After completion of the project by April 2011, the port’s total terminal capacity will increase to 30 million tpa.
The company will look beyond the power sector and plans to bid for NHAI projects
Sunil Hitech Engineers Ltd, which has been focussing on the power sector, now plans to bid for road projects. The company will target schemes from the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) through joint ventures.
“This year we plan an executive meeting to think about venturing into other sectors. We may probably foray into the road sector,” said Sunil Gutte, joint managing director, Sunil Hitech. However, the plans are still at a preliminary stage.
Mr Gutte said that the focus was on both build-operate & transfer projects as well as contract-based road projects from the NHAI. “I think it (the road sector) is a very promising sector. This year’s Budget has given a major impetus to road projects. Also, as a sector, it provides ample and never-ending opportunities. A number of big road contracts are likely to come up for bidding,” said Mr Gutte.
In order to bid and qualify for NHAI projects, the company plans joint ventures with other companies. “We may look for joint ventures—both domestic and international—to bid and qualify for these projects,” said Mr Gutte.
The answer will surprise you, given what the media, the agents and ads tell you. Debashis Basu...