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Range-bound opening expected: Thursday Market Preview

Markets in the US closed mixed on Wednesday on profit-booking after the recent gains while those in Asia were lower in early trade this morning

The local market is likely to see a range-bound opening on tepid global cues. The US markets closed mixed on Wednesday on profit-booking after the recent surge in key indices. Markets in Asia were trading lower in early trade on Thursday, tracking the weak US markets and ahead of the Bank of Korea’s policy meeting on Friday. The SGX Nifty was down 33 points at 5,249 against its previous close of 5,282.

As expected, stocks opened on a pessimistic mode on Wednesday. The Sensex and the Nifty had a negative opening at 17,724 and 5,293. However, after the market quickly hit the lows in the first half hour, there was a strong revival; the indices made up the day's losses and were in the green intermittently. However, sellers took over in the last two hours, following rumours about action against Anil Ambani group companies, sending the Nifty to the day's low of 5,223 and the Sensex to 17,500. The silver lining for the bulls is that there was a significant fightback in the last half hour of trading, when the Nifty revived by as much as 50 points from the day's low. 

With Wednesday’s fall, the market has declined for four days in a row. Also, the fall over these four days amounts to 331 points on the Nifty and 1,042 points on the Sensex. In the two previous rounds of decline, the Nifty fell by 399 and 483 points and the Sensex by 1,359 points and 1,661 points. If yesterday’s lows hold, there is a chance that bulls will enjoy a sharp rally. Whether it is a temporary one, we don't know now.

Markets in the US closed mixed on profit-booking after the recent gains. However, the Dow notched its eight straight day of gains, boosted by Walt Disney Company and Coca 
Cola as they reported higher quarterly revenues. In the banking segment, Wells Fargo & Company declined on reports that its chief financial officer was retiring.

Commenting on the economy, Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke said that the labour market remains a concern and that inflation would continue to remain sluggish.

The Dow added 6.74 points (0.06%) at 12,239.89. The S&P 500 lost 3.69 points (0.28%) at 1,320.88 and the Nasdaq shed 7.98 points (0.29%) to close at 2,789.07. Both the Dow and the S&P 500 are at 2-1/2-year highs.

Tracking the weak US markets overnight, bourses in Asia were trading lower in early trade today. Expectations of rate increases in other nations in the region will follow China's move to raise its rates were also weighing on sentiment.

The Hang Seng was down 0.58%, the Jakarta Composite tumbled 1.66%, the KLSE Composite tanked 1%, the Nikkei 225 fell 0.04%, the Straits Times declined 0.58%, The Seoul Composite was down 0.39% and the Taiwan Weighted lost 1.16%. On the other hand, the Shanghai Composite gained 0.27% in early trade.

Back home, environment minister Jairam Ramesh on Wednesday gave forest clearance to Steel Authority of India (SAIL) for mining iron ore from Chiria reserves in Jharkhand, overturning the recommendation of his Forest Advisory Committee for the second time in a month. The approval for SAIL, a Maharatna, was however given with 13 specific conditions.

The minister said that one of the factors behind the approval for the project, which was mired in several controversies, was that “Chiria is essential for the future of SAIL”.

 

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