Indian Market Snaps 2-day Losing Streak
The Indian market erased early losses to end modestly higher on Monday, as late buying emerged in IT, healthcare, capital goods and banking stocks.
With disappointing U.S. jobs data weighing on sentiment, the benchmark BSE Sensex opened lower and fell to a low of 18,258 at noon before reversing direction to end 44 points or 0.24 percent higher at 18,420.
Drug maker Cipla led the gainers, rising about 2.3 percent, while ICICI Bank, Infosys, TCS, HDFC Bankand HDFC ended up between 0.9 percent and 1.7 percent.
The broader Nifty index rose by 15 points or 0.28 percent to 5,532 and the BSE small-cap index added 0.17 percent, but the mid-cap index closed 0.25 percent lower. The market breadth was slightly negative, with declining shares outpacing gaining ones by 1461 to 1326 shares on the BSE.
Among the prominent decliners, auto stocks such as Bajaj auto and Mahindra & Mahindra fell about 1.5 percent each on speculation over a fuel price hike expected this week. Ashok Leyland fell a little over 2 percent after the commercial vehicle manufacturer posted a drop in its vehicle sales for May. Surprisingly, Maruti Suzuki rose half a percent after a strike disrupted production at its plant in the northern state of Haryana.
Jaiprakash Associates (down 2.5 percent), ONGC (down 1.4 percent), Reliance Infrastructure (down 1.2 percent), Hindustan Unilever (down 1.1 percent) and Reliance Communication (down 0.9 percent) were among the notable decliners. Among metal stocks, Tata Steel shed 0.8 percent and Hindalco fell 1.6 percent, while Sterlite Industries closed unchanged.
Suryachakra Power Corp climbed 6.6 percent after announcing a deal to set up a 250-megawatt wind farm with Finland's WinWinD Oy. McLeod Russel rose 1.8 percent on reports that domestic raw tea prices will go up by Rs.10-15 per kg in the current fiscal year. Rival Jayshree Tea & Industries closed up 0.9 percent.
Man Infraconstruction soared 9.4 percent on winning a Rs.151-crore order for civil and structural works.Sun TV Network climbed 7.2 percent, extending Friday's 4 percent rally, after the broadcasting firm denied any involvement in the 2G scam. HDIL jumped 5 percent after an update on its slum rehabilitation project in Mumbai. Indraprastha Gas rose 0.7 percent after it reportedly hiked CNG prices in Delhi.
Sugar stocks lost ground after Maharashtra state, the nation's biggest sugar producer, revised downwards its 2010/11 sugar output forecast due to early arrival of monsoon rains. Shree Renuka fell 2.4 percent, Bajaj Hindusthan shed 0.3 percent, Balrampur Chini lost 0.7 percent and Dhampurended down 2.1 percent.
Standard Chartered IDR plunged 17.5 percent after capital market regulator SEBI said the bank will not be required to convert its IDRs into shares. Elsewhere, the other Asian markets edged lower on Monday, as disappointing economic data and falling U.S. index futures led to risk aversion. Trading activity in the region was subdued as markets in China, Hong Kong, South Korea, Taiwan and New Zealand were shut for public holidays.
European stocks were subdued in early trading, dragged down by aviation stocks, after a trade group cut the industry's profit forecast for 2011. The Dow futures were down 11 points and crude prices fell around a percent on profit taking on concerns over the economic outlook.