Traders make $8-billion bet against the euro

Traders and hedge funds have bet nearly $8 billion (€5.9 billion) against the euro, amassing the biggest ever short position in the single currency on fears of a euro-zone debt crisis.

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Sculpture sold for a record $104.30 million

A bronze sculpture was sold for $104.30 million at an auction in London, setting a new world record for the highest price paid for a work of art.

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Rally may continue on the back of a weakening dollar

A surge in Asian markets triggered a 100-point rally in Indian bourses

Indian markets gained momentum during the day as Asian markets ended positively. At the end of the day, the Sensex shot up 107 points from the previous day’s close to 16,042 while the Nifty closed at 4,793, up 32 points. However, fears of a possibility that the government may start to unwind its fiscal stimulus in the forthcoming budget continued to weigh on market sentiments.

The rally which began in the US dollar index on 14 January 2010 has now reversed. Hence we expect all emerging markets to stay positive and commodity prices to go up.

Yesterday we had said that the market would move sideways, but it ended up higher today. But we also said that for the market to trigger a short rally from here on it should cross 16,000. We expect the market to remain up tomorrow.

At 12:00 hrs IST, the Sensex was trading at 15,974, 39 points up from the previous day’s close, while at 14:00 hrs IST, the Sensex was trading 147 points up from the previous day’s close at 16,083.

At the end of the day, telecom stocks rose on reports that firms in this space will together save at least $1.50 billion this fiscal in capital expenditure thanks to their practice of sharing towers and accompanying infrastructure, giving them some respite from a brutal price war. Bharti Airtel and Idea Cellular rose 2% while Reliance Communications remained flat.

Strides Arcolab has received ANDA approval for its Labetatol Hydrochoride (HCI) injection USP 100 mg per 20 ml and 200 mg per 40 ml, multi-dose vials. The stock zoomed 13%.

Subex shot up 10% on reports that the company plans to raise up to Rs48 crore through a preferential placement with an investment company.

Cement stocks gained on reports of a price hike effective from 1 February 2010. As per reports, almost all manufacturers have pushed rates up by Rs3-Rs5 for a 50-kg bag, bringing up the average national price to about Rs235. ACC and UltraTech Cement were up 3% each.

Electrical & Gulf Projects Operating Company, a part of L&T’s Construction Division, has bagged orders worth Rs582 crore from various customers for four electrical projects in India and the UAE. The stock was up 1%.

Jet Airways was up 2% after the company reported impressive growth of 30% in January 2010 in international passenger traffic compared to the same period last year. Domestic passenger traffic in January 2010 registered 26% increase from last year.

Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) and Britain’s BAE Systems reportedly plan to inject a total of $21.25 million over a three-year period into their joint venture company Defence Land Systems India. M&M was down 1%.

During the day, Asia’s key benchmark indices in China, South Korea, Hong Kong, Singapore and Taiwan were up by between 0.47%-2.01%. However, Japan’s index fell by 0.19%.

On Monday, 8 February 2010, the Dow Jones Industrial Average declined 104 points while the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite were down 9 points and 15 points respectively.

However, in premarket trading, the Dow was trading 42 points higher.

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