Wednesday Closing Report: For whom Big Ben will toll

The domestic market opened in the green this morning, factoring in the rate cut announced by the RBI yesterday. Overcoming a fair bout of choppiness the market ended with gains of over half a percent, optimistic about the US Federal Reserve's policy decision, to be announced later today.

The market brushed aside the minor hiccups associated with the Reserve Bank of India's (RBI) policy announcement on Tuesday and opened with smart gains this morning, in line with markets across the globe. The realty sector, which ended lower yesterday, saw some buying action in the morning session. However, touching the day's high in mid-morning trade, the indices were range-bound. A small bout of selling towards the end of trade saw the indices paring some of their earlier gains.

Finally, the Sensex ended 120.05 points (0.59%) higher at 20,465. The index touched a high of 20,473 and a low of 20,426 during the session. The Nifty stood at 6160, up 41.50 points (0.68%). The index oscillated between a high-low of 6,182 and 6,147, respectively.

The market breadth was tipped in favour of the gainers today. The Sensex ended with 21 stocks in the advancing list against eight losers. The Nifty had 43 gainers and seven declining stocks. The broader indices ended in line with the key benchmarks; the BSE Mid-cap index gained 0.60% while the BSE Small-cap index rose 0.68%.

The top Sensex performers included Sterlite Industries (up 3.74%), Tata Motors (up 2.72%), ACC (up 2.49%), State Bank of India (up 2.19%) and HDFC Bank (up 1.91%). The losers were led by Cipla (down 1.10%), Reliance Communications (down 1.02%) and Reliance Industries (down 0.85%).

Baring the BSE Oil & Gas index, all other sectoral indices ended in the positive zone today. BSE Metal (up 1.55%), BSE Auto (up 1.21%) and BSE Consumer Durables (up 0.89%) were the notable gainers. On the other hand, BSE Oil & Gas index settled 0.49% lower in trade.

India's Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) has beaten Chinese rival China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) to become Asia's top oil and gas exploration and production (E&P) company. China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) this year slipped to No 2 slot.

Under the stewardship of RS Sharma, ONGC climbed three places to take the top slot in the 2010 rankings released by Platts, one of the most respected global providers of energy and metals information.

Asian markets finished mostly in the green today as global brokerage firms upgraded benchmark indices in Hong Kong and South Korea. The announcement from the US Federal Reserve, due later today, also boosted sentiments.

The Hang Seng was up 2%, KLSE Composite added 0.07%, Straits Times gained 0.61% and Seoul Composite surged 0.93%. On the other hand, the Shanghai Composite was down 0.47%, Jakarta Composite shed 0.55% and the Taiwan Weighted lost 0.61% in trade today.

The US indices ended at their six-month highs on Tuesday ahead of the much-awaited announcement about fresh stimulus aimed at boosting the economy. Investors speculate that the mid-term polls will go in favour of the Republicans, seen as "business-friendly". Upbeat third quarter earnings reports also supported the rally.

The Dow gained 64.10 points (0.58%) to 11,188. The S&P 500 added 9.19 points (0.78%) to 1,193. The Nasdaq rose 28.68 points (1.14%) to close at 2,533.

Foreign institutional investors were net buyers of stocks worth Rs461 crore on Tuesday. Domestic institutional investors were net sellers of equities worth Rs202 crore on the same day.

Consumer electronics major Videocon (0.38%) today announced its plans of entering into the financial services business through a general insurance company in partnership with US-based property and casualty insurer Liberty Mutual Group (LMG).

The foreign partner will hold a maximum permissible 26% stake in the joint venture (JV) with Videocon owning the majority. An agreement is expected to be signed between the partners soon.

Ratings firm Moody's has assigned a long-term moderate credit risk to Yes Bank's (up 0.84%) currency deposits with a stable outlook, on account of the private lender's strong financial performance and profitability.

"Yes Bank has been assigned a Baa3 long-term and Prime-3 short-term global local-currency deposit ratings by Moody's. The outlook on all ratings is stable," the bank said in a statement.



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Supreme Infra wins two orders worth Rs69 crore

Supreme Infrastructure India Ltd said it won two orders worth Rs69 crore for construction related works.

The first order is from Director General Married Accommodation Project for the construction of dwelling units at Babina in Jhansi worth Rs51 crore. The estimated time for completion is 25 months. The second project is from Housefed Punjab for construction of 96 flats at Kapurthala, Punjab. This order will be executed by the company along with Zanders Engineering Ltd. The total cost of the project is Rs18 crore and the estimated time period is 18 months.

On Wednesday, Supreme Infra shares ended 1.8% down at Rs281 on the Bombay Stock Exchange, while the benchmark Sensex closed 0.6% up at 20,465 points


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