Sensex regains some lost ground as select blue chips recover

Last Updated: Thu, Feb 28, 2013 09:19 hrs

The market, which plunged sharply in early afternoon trade, continues to languish in the red, despite regaining some lost ground on selective buying at a few blue chip counters.

The Sensex, which plunged to 18,933.90, losing nearly 220 points in the process, is currently down 118 points or 0.62% at 19,034.55. The Nifty is down with a loss of 46.55 points or 0.8% at 5750.25, nearly 25 points off the day's low of 5726.15. Earlier in the day, the Sensex and Nifty had surged to 19,322.28 and 5849.90, respectively.

Capital goods, metal and bank stocks are reeling under pressure. Mirroring sharp losses posted by key stocks from these sectors, the Capital Goods, Metal and Bankex indices are down 2% - 2.2% now.

Power, oil, PSU and automobile stocks too are mostly trading weak. Realty stocks, which saw some buying early on, are trading weak now, despite coming off early afternoon lows. Pharmaceuticals stocks are trading mixed. Information technology, FMCG and consumer durables stocks are finding modest support.

Among the gainers in the Sensex, ITC is up 2.4%, Coal India is trading nearly 2% up and Tata Consultancy Services is up with a gain of 1.7%, while Wipro, Sun Pharmaceutical Industries and Kotak Bank are up 1% - 1.2%.

HDFC Bank, Bharti Airtel, Hindustan Unilever, HCL Technologies, Bajaj Auto, DLF and Infosys are trading modestly higher.

Reliance Infrastructure is down by over 6%. State Bank of India, Punjab National Bank, IDFC, Tata Steel, Jindal Steel & Power, ICICI Bank, Cairn India, Axis Bank, Ranbaxy Laboratories, Power Grid Corporation, Larsen & Toubro, Bank of Baroda and Maruti Suzuki are down 2.5% - 5%.

Hindalco, Lupin, BHEL, Jaiprakash Associates, Reliance Industries, Mahindra & Mahindra, Sesa Goa, Ambuja Cements, BPCL, Tata Motors, ONGC, ACC and Siemens are also down with notable losses.

During his budget speech, the finance minister P Chidambaram stated that the country's economy is recovering, and that retaining high growth is a top priority.,The FM sought support to navigate the economy, which has slowed down since 2010 and said that controlling inflation and fiscal deficit is the main aim.

He stresses the need to cut spending to control inflation.

The FM proposed a 30% rise in FY 14 expenditure, which is now pegged at Rs 16.44 lakh crore. Allocating Rs 21,000 crore for national health mission, an increase of 24%, the finance minister set aside Rs 37,000 crore for healthcare.

For education, an allocation of Rs 65,000 crore has been in the budget. Allocation for education was hiked by 17%, and this triggered some buying in Educomp Solutions, Core Education, NIIT, Aptech and Everonn.

Realty stocks saw some buying after the finance minister proposed additional interest deduction on housing loan.

Stating that fiscal consolidation cannot be restored only by cutting expenditure, the finance minister imposed an additional surcharge on individuals earning over Rs 1 crore. The individual income tax slabs have been left unchanged.

Shares of carmakers declined after the finance minister proposed a 100% customs duty on imported cars, up from the existing 75%. The excise duty on SUVs, has been hiked from 27% to 30%.

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