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It was a numbered week!

The city this week witnessed strong GDP numbers, a set of good corporate results, inflation on expected lines, yet the Sensex disappointed

Both the Sensex as well as Nifty extended last week’s losses and closed the week in red for the week ending May 30, 2008. The BSE Sensex was down 1.41 per cent and CNX Nifty 1.55 per cent.

On the last trading of the week, the Sensex closed at 16,415.57, up 0.61 per cent or 99.31 points after hitting an intraday high of 16,540.49 and low of 16,314.99. The Nifty hit an intraday high of 4,908.85 and 4,833.45, respectively, before ending the session at 4,870.10, up 0.72 per cent or 34.8 points.

For the week ended May 30, CNX Midcap Index lost 3 per cent and BSE Small-cap Index was down 4.5 per cent. Banking stocks were the worst hit, BSE Bankex fell 6.5 per cent led by ICICI Bank and SBI, both cracked over 8.2 per cent, while BSE IT Index was up 6.5 per cent, due to the jump of 11.4 per cent, 8 per cent and 6.8 per cent in TCS, Satyam and Infosys, respectively.

Among the sectoral indices, BSE Auto Index was down 5.6 per cent - M&M down 10 per cent and Tata Motors down 9.2 per cent. BSE Oil & Gas Index down 5.5 per cent - Cairn India down 7 per cent, Reliance industries down 6.2 per cent, BSE IT Index up 6.5 per cent - TCS up 11.4 per cent, Satyam up 8 per cent and Infosys up 6.8 per cent.

It was a numbered week! Inflation numbers soared, yet again and disappointed the markets. Fourth quarter GDP growth for fiscal 2007-08 came in at a healthy 8.8 per cent, raising the GDP growth rate for the year as a whole to 9 per cent; a couple of strong results too came in, but gave a momentary relief. Moved by the plight of the oil companies and dwindling investors confidence in the stock markets (read, FII investment) the government took a slow of measures to make people believe that the India growth story is still intact.

Inflation numbers increased further for the week ended May 17 it stood at 8.1 per cent, as against 7.82 per cent in earlier week. This was followed by the stupendous results from capital goods giant L&T and the news of bonus issue, which cheered the markets on Thursday. Jindal Steel and Power too came up with strong set of numbers; net profit was up 92 per cent in Q4 FY2008.

During the week, the Securities and Exchange Board of India chalked out a plan to boost investor confidence. SEBI has simplified norms for registration of FIIs and sub-accounts and allowed sovereign wealth funds, university funds, endowments and charitable trusts to register as Foreign Institutional Investors.

The SEBI also decided to accord FII status to asset management companies promoted by NRIs and allow them to buy shares in the open market, provided they do not invest in ‘proprietary funds’. FIIs have also been permitted to invest in collective investment schemes, where individuals and institutions collectively invest in various instruments.

As far as Asia is concerned, MSCI Asia Pacific Index fell 0.4 per cent to 150.00 this week, its second-straight weekly loss. Raw-materials producers and energy-related stocks led declines among the index's 10 industry groups.