New Delhi: The government today approved a share split in and issue of bonus shares by ONGC, the country's biggest oil and gas producer, as a prelude to the company's follow-on public offer (FPO) in March 2011, reports PTI.
According to sources, the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) approved splitting a share of ONGC with a face value of Rs 10 into two shares of Rs 5 each. It is also said to have approved a 1:1 bonus issue. However, no official statement was made till late this evening.
The state-owned ONGC had suggested to the government that the company's stock be split ahead of the FPO. The government plans to sell 5% of ONGC shares to mop up Rs10,800 crore through the FPO. Post the offer, government's shareholding in ONGC would come down to 69.14% from the current 74.14%.
Shares of ONGC closed up by 3.23%, or Rs40.30, at Rs1,288.50 on the BSE today.
ONGC had appointed two international auditors (DeGolyer and MacNaughton; and Gaffney, Cline & Associates) to certify its oil and gas reserves. The energy producer usually gets its reserves audited every five years, but decided to get a certification in the third year itself this time because of the FPO.
The market opened firm despite tepid cues from across the globe. Early gains were supported by metal and auto sectors. Manufacturing output for November, as measured by the HSBC Markit Purchase Managers' Index (PMI), which witnessed its fastest growth in six months, also supported the gains. The northward journey was marred by some retracement in the noon session. However, the indices resumed their upward climb in post-noon trade as the key European markets were trading in the positive zone. Finally, the key indices ended the session near the day's high.
The Sensex closed the day today 313.92 points (1.61%) higher at 19,835.17. The bellwether index touched an intraday high of 19,870.19 and a low of 19,575.15. The Nifty closed at 5,965.95, up 103.25 points (1.76%). The index scaled a high of 5,971 and encountered a trough of 5,865.55 mid-session.
The market breadth was positive today. The Sensex returned home with 24 gainers and six losers, while the Nifty ended with 40 stocks in the green and 10 in the red. The broader market continued to outperform the key indices. The BSE Mid-cap index surged 2.83% and the BSE Small-cap index soared 3.14%.
The top performers on the Sensex included Cipla (up 6.30%), Tata Steel (up 5.04%), Mahindra & Mahindra (4.53%), Tata Motors (up 4.13%) and Larsen & Toubro (up 4.04%). The losers were led by Bharti Airtel (down 2.51%), Hero Honda (down 2.28%), Wipro (down 1.34%), Maruti Suzuki (down 0.77%) and Hindustan Unilever (down 0.57%).
In the sectoral space, BSE Metal (up 3.39%), BSE PSU (up 3.18%), BSE Realty (up 3.11%), BSE Bankex (up 2.96%) and BSE Capital Goods (up 2.88%) were the top performers. On the flip side, BSE TECk (down 0.03%) was the lone sectoral loser.
The seasonally adjusted HSBC Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI)-a headline index designed to measure the overall health of the manufacturing sector-posted 58.4 in November, up from the October reading of 57.2. The latest reading pointed to a marked expansion of the Indian manufacturing sector. The rate of growth accelerated for a second successive month and was above the long-run average for the series.
Markets in Asia, which were soft in early trade, received a boost as data showed that Chinese manufacturing output was on the rise in November. The Purchasing Managers' Index rose to 55.2 from 54.7 in October, China's logistics federation said on its website today. The HSBC China Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index, a gauge of nationwide manufacturing activity, rose to 55.3 in November from 54.8 in October. The rise in the PMI shows manufacturing activity is accelerating and may add to concerns about overheating in the Chinese economy and strengthening inflation pressures, that could lead to further tightening measures.
The Shanghai Composite added 0.12%, the Hang Seng surged 1.05%, the Jakarta Composite jumped by 2.49%, the KLSE Composite ended 0.01% higher, the Nikkei 225 gained 0.51%, the Straits Times was up 1.30%, the Seoul Composite was up 1.30% and the Taiwan Weighted surged 1.76%.
The commerce ministry reported today that India's merchandise exports grew by 21.3% to $18 billion in October over the corresponding period a year ago, raising hopes that the country may be able to achieve the $200 billion exports target set for the current fiscal year. Imports during the period grew by 6.8% to $27.68 billion, leaving a trade deficit of $9.72 billion, according to data from the ministry of commerce issued today.
Markets in the US closed lower on Tuesday, but off the day's lows on nagging fears about the sovereign-debt crisis in Europe despite positive economic news. The S&P/Case-Shiller index of home values in 20 cities rose 0.6% in September from the corresponding period last year, the smallest gain since January. The gauge fell 0.8% from the previous month after adjusting for seasonal variations, the biggest drop since April 2009. Besides, The Conference Board's sentiment index increased to 54.1, topping analysts' forecast. The Institute for Supply Management-Chicago Inc said its business gauge advanced to the highest since April.
The Dow declined 46.47 points (0.42%) to 11,006.02. The S&P 500 shed 7.21 points (0.61%) to 1,180.55. The Nasdaq fell 26.99 points (1.07%) to 2,498.23.
Foreign institutional investors were net buyers of stocks worth Rs889.46 crore on Tuesday. On the other hand, domestic institutional investors were net sellers, offloading equities worth Rs435.03 crore.
The steel plant of Ispat Industries at Dolvi, Maharashtra has been closed for over a month due to a cash crunch. But the company has not bothered to inform the stock exchanges
Ispat Industries, which has been subjected to a massive countrywide raid by the revenue intelligence wing of the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) in the past 24 hours, is in an acute cash crunch. The cash crunch has forced the closure of the company's electric arc furnace in Dolvi, Maharashtra, which has a capacity to make 3.3 million tonnes of steel and also the cold rolling and galvanizing mill at Kalmeshwar, near Nagpur.
Amazingly, the mill has remained closed from 3rd November but the bourses have not been informed. Moneylife contacted the company, the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) and the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) to find out whether the exchange and the regulator had been informed of this material change but received no reply till the time of writing.
Yesterday, The Economic Times reported that Ispat is up for sale and will possibly be bought by Arcelor Mittal. Based on the report, the Ispat Industries stock gained 12% yesterday and another 4% today to close at Rs18.65 on the BSE. The media has been writing about a possible change of control in Ispat regularly. Each of these reports has turned out to be untrue. The stock, however, jumps sharply on such reports, which possibly helps some well-placed speculators.
Ispat has been making continuous losses for the past many years and in the September quarter again it reported a massive loss. The company lost Rs332 crore compared to a loss of Rs79.4 crore in the corresponding quarter last year.
While Ispat has been perpetually starved for cash, in November news reports quoted Vinod Garg, executive director, commercial, as saying that the company will raise steel production capacity to 4.2 million tonnes per annum (MTPA) from 3.3 MTPA.