Staggered upmove ahead: Weekly Market Report

If the Nifty holds above 4,789, gains may persist

The spike in headline as well as retail inflation for the month of May, the depreciating rupee and global issues dominated the scene this week. The market settled in the green on three of the five trading days, with the benchmarks notching gains on the last two trading days in the late session.

Overall, the market closed the week 1% lower. The Sensex declined 140 points to 16,153 and the Nifty closed at 4,891, down 37 points. The market is likely to see a volatile upmove with the Nifty going up to the level of 5,040. Improving economic conditions may take the market even higher. However, this upmove will be staggered and also as long as 4,789 is broken.   

A spike in headline inflation for the month of April and weak global cues saw the indices extend their losses on Monday. Support from the European indices and US stock futures resulted in the market closing in the positive on Tuesday. However, the rupee hitting its five-month low and unsupportive global cues resulted in the market closing sharply lower on Wednesday.

The market overcame European fears and closed marginally in the positive on Thursday. Better-than-expected results from State Bank of India and US futures moving from deep red to green provided the much-needed boost to the market in post-noon trade, ensuring a positive close on Friday.

Among the sectoral indices BSE Fast Moving Consumer Goods (up 2%) and BSE Healthcare (up 1%) were the noteworthy gainers while BSE Auto (down 6%) and BSE Consumer Durables (down 3%) were the top losers.

The top five Sensex gainers in the week were Sterlite Industries (up 6%), State Bank of India (up 5%), Infosys, Jindal Steel & Power (up 3% each) and ITC (up 2%). The key losers were Tata Motors (down 13%), BHEL (down 9%), Maruti Suzuki (down 6%), Hindalco Industries (down 5%) and Coal India (down 4%).

 The Nifty leaders were Sesa Goa (up 8%), Sterlite Ind (up 6%), SBI (up 5%), Power Grid Corporation and BPCL (up 4% each). Tata Motors (down 13%), BHEL (down 9%), Reliance Infrastructure (down 8%), Maruti Suzuki (down 6%) and Axis Bank (down 5%) settled at the bottom of the index.

The rupee gained 5 paise to close at 54.42 against the dollar on Friday with the Reserve Bank of India's (RBI) swift action pulling it back from near 55-levels touched in early trade amid strong capital outflows. Dealers said strong dollar demand from importers, mainly oil refiners, on expectation of further rise in dollar on concerns caused rupee's fall.

Headline inflation moved up to 7.23% in April 2012from 6.89% in the previous month. High inflation is a setback to the big picture of the economic growth as well. Prices are rising along side decline in industrial production. Index of Industrial Production (IIP) contracted by 3.5% in March and gross domestic product (GDP) growth slowed to three-year low of 6.9% in 2011-12.

On a similar note, consumer price index (CPI) based inflation, or retail inflation, shot up to the double digit mark at 10.32% in April on account of substantial increase in vegetable, edible oils and milk prices. Based on the CPI, the inflation for March was revised to 9.38% from the provisional estimate of 9.47%.

Earlier this week, global credit ratings agency Moody's downgraded the country's three largest private sector lenders-ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank and Axis Bank-to D+ from C- to align them with the sovereign rating. As a result, the hybrid debt ratings of these banks, except HDFC Bank, will be negatively impacted.

On the results front, engineering major Larsen & Toubro (L&T) on Monday posted 13.9% jump in stand-alone net profit at Rs1,920.41 crore for the fourth quarter ended 31 March 2012 and said it expects a 15%-20% growth in revenues and order book in the current fiscal. The company had reported a net profit of Rs1,686.21 crore during the January-March quarter of 2010-11.

L&T's net sales for the quarter grew by about 21% to Rs18,460.90 crore as against Rs15,261.17 crore in the same period of FY10-11.

India's largest lender State Bank of India (SBI) on Friday posted net profit of Rs4,050.27 crore in the fourth quarter ended March 2012, against just Rs20.88 crore recorded in Q4 of the previous fiscal. SBI's profits had taken a big hit in Q4 of 2010-11 on account of higher provisioning for bad loans and increased tax outgo. Total income of the bank rose to Rs33,959.54 crore in the quarter against Rs26,536.84 crore in the same quarter a year ago.

On the international front, Europe is expected to keep its stranglehold on the markets in the week ahead, as investors take stock of Greece's commitment to the Eurozone and watch for other issues related to the debt crisis.

Facebook's stock market debut did not live up to the expectations as the social network's shares closed the first trading day on a flat note with technical glitches at the Nasdaq stock exchange sending confusing signals to investors. After rising to an intraday peak of $45 apiece, the shares ended at $38.23, up only by 0.61% from the $38 offer price.


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Against All Odds

The Challenging Ones inspires physically challenged people to shine in sports and adventure, finds Alekh Angre

In 1999, Major Devender Pal Singh (now retired) lost his right leg in a mortar bomb explosion in the thick of Operation Vijay, better known as the Kargil War. On reaching the hospital, he was initially declared dead, but an anaesthetist managed to revive him. Although he survived, Major Singh’s right leg had to be amputated due to gangrene. Typical of a war hero, Major Singh was determined to live a normal life. He got himself a prosthetic leg at the Artificial Limb Centre, Pune and worked doggedly to overcome his disability and do more. He decided to take part in a car rally but couldn’t find sponsors because of his disability. The rejection by sponsors only made him more determined and he decided to focus on running. Ten years after Kargil, he participated in the Delhi half marathon (2009). “The rejection was a catalyst to prove myself. I completed the race in 3hours 40mins,” he says, proudly. Since then Major Singh has completed five half marathons and earned recognition as India’s ‘Blade Runner’.

But not everybody has Major Singh’s steely determination and will power. Many find it difficult to deal with disability. It is to help them that Major Singh, along with Major Bimal Mehra (retd), founded The Challenging Ones (TCO). TCO started as a Facebook page in 2011 with the idea of motivating those who are physically challenged—he prefers to call them ‘Challengers’—to overcome their limitations and train them to participate in sports & adventure activities.

TCO is now registered as a non-government organisation (NGO) under the Indian Trusts Act. Its core group comprises experts in orthopaedics and prosthetics. 
TCO has three core activities. One, it provides a discussion platform for prosthetics, creating awareness on basics like how to wear the limbs, how to perform physical activities such as running, driving, etc. It also connects them with prosthetic experts to receive technical support and guidance.

Two, TCO offers a peer support system for people using prosthetics and for their families since accidents that force people to undergo amputation cause trauma to the entire family. Often, family members don’t know how to deal with the situation. “The Challengers take it upon themselves to meet and guide fresh amputees and their family on how to deal with the unforeseen situation. It has better impact than help that is provided by able-bodied persons,” explains Major Singh, who is now employed with a bank and works with TCO in his spare time.  

Finally, TCO wants Challengers to participate in sports and adventure activities. “Our ultimate aim is to train more Challengers to help them win medals for India in the Paralympics,” says Major Singh.

So far, apart from regular workshops and talks (including the ones at Goa and Pune) to help and guide people, TCO has helped 12 amputees to participate in a 6km event at the Airtel-sponsored Delhi half marathon. It has also motivated five challengers, including a five-year old (who lost a limb due to a congenital disease) to participate in a Terry Fox Run at Chandigarh to raise funds for cancer research. At an individual level, TCO supported and sponsored Neeraj George (whose left leg was amputated due to bone tumour) to participate in the 2nd French International Para Badminton tournament at Rodez, France in 2012. Neeraj won a gold medal for India in the doubles event.

TCO’s online presence helps it reach out to many who want to take up the challenge of living a normal life. It had received monetary support from an organisation and individuals, but the big chunk of its fund-raising happens through the talks that it conducts. TCO also plans to assist a few companies to set up state-of-the-art limb centres across India. Currently, Major Singh is working hard to get the insurance industry to extend cover for a better quality of prosthetic equipment which is expensive but allows better mobility and higher activity levels.

TCO has volunteers in various cities. You can volunteer for TCO’s activities by arranging motivational talks for the physically challenged. You can also make financial donations. TCO is awaiting exemption under Section 80G of the Income-Tax Act

The Challenging Ones
A/ 53, Sector 36, Noida (UP) 201301
Mobile: 9650960322 / 9999319942
Email: [email protected]


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