Sensex up by 153; Nifty gains 46 points

Despite huge volatility, the Sensex managed to end in positive territory

The Sensex gained 153 points from the previous day’s close, ending the day at 16,849 while the Nifty closed at 4,999; 46 points up on the back of strong industrial output data even as volatility ruled the day.

During the day, India’s biggest State-run oil exploration firm Oil & Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) rose 3% on reports that the oil ministry has proposed a sharp hike in administered gas prices. Meanwhile, the government has allowed ONGC Videsh, the overseas arm of ONGC, to invest an additional Rs322 crore in an oilfield in Brazil. The approval of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) will raise the total investment in the project to Rs1,762 crore.

Tata Steel was up 2% after the company said that it approved a new convertible bonds offer in exchange for an existing $875 million security to reduce costs and ease repayment obligations.

Shipping stocks rose after the Baltic Dry Index jumped 5.5% to 3,954 on Thursday, 12 November 2009 as China’s huge demand for iron ore and coal has intensified ship congestion outside key ports. Mercator Lines, Shipping Corporation of India, Essar Shipping Ports & Logistics, Shreyas Shipping & Logistics, Varun Shipping Company and Great Eastern Shipping Company rose by between 0.4% - 3.49%.

Shoppers Stop lost 4% after the company said its board will meet on Saturday, 14 November 2009, to consider raising funds through various means. JK Paper surged 4% on reports that the company plans to double its Orissa plant capacity to 2.5 lakh metric tonnes per annum at an investment of Rs1,500 crore.

Meanwhile, Asia’s key benchmark indices in Japan, South Korea and Taiwan fell by between 0.05%-0.35% while the key benchmark indices in Singapore, China and Hong Kong rose by between 0.04 %-0.7%.

During the day Fan Jianping, chief economist with the State Information Centre said China’s annual GDP growth rate could reach 10% in the fourth quarter as the economic recovery exceeds expectations, with full-year economic growth expected at about 8.3%. He added that next year’s economic growth would certainly exceed 8% but was unlikely to bring inflation risks, with the consumer price index possibly rising about 2.5%.

China’s central bank vice governor, Zhu Min said China is experiencing a V-shaped economic recovery, but it still faces tough challenges to restructure its economy in the process. He said China will place more emphasis on improving the quality and structure of the economy next year as growth becomes less of a worry.

France’s economy grew 0.3% in the September 2009 quarter. The growth was the same as in the June 2009 quarter, when France’s economy expanded for the first time after four quarters of contraction.

Germany’s September 2009 quarter gross domestic product rose a smaller-than-expected 0.7% compared with the previous quarter, the German Statistics Office reported.

The euro zone economy rose 0.4% quarter-on-quarter after five consecutive quarters of shrinking output, but was 4.1% lower year-on-year.

Meanwhile, on Thursday 13 November 2009, US markets ended in the red. The Dow Jones fell 94 points to 10,197 while the S&P 500 index was down 11 points, and the Nasdaq Composite was down 18 points.

US jobless claims fell for the second straight week. The latest initial jobless claims tally came in at a lower-than-expected 502,000, which is the lowest weekly total since January. Meanwhile, continuing claims came in at 5.63 million, which is the lowest level since March 2009. Mortgage rates declined last week, with the 30-year fixed rate down to 4.91% and home foreclosures slowed for a third consecutive month. In premarket trading, the Dow Jones was trading 11 points higher.
—Swapnil Suvarna [email protected]

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