Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Realty gains as market ends flat

The key benchmark indices ended flat today following losses in most Asian markets. Realty shares advanced today on hopes that lower interest rates will spur housing demand. 

Concerns over the worsening fiscal deficit of the Indian government also dampened investor sentiments.
 
The Sensex ended 0.2 per cent lower at 9,015 and the Nifty gained 5 points to close at 2,776.

While buying was seen realty, oil&gas and auto stocks, selling pressure was visible in banking, consumer durables and healthcare counters. The realty index on the BSE surged 3.2 per cent led by some buying in DLF, Unitech and IBREL. 

The BSE oil&gas index gained 1.4 per cent.

On the other hand, the BSE bankex shed 2.3 per cent and Union Bank of India, Indian Overseas Bank and OBC were the biggest losers in the pack. 

In the Sensex pack, DLF was the biggest gainer, up 7.3 per cent. Other major gainers were ACC, Maruti and RIL. HDFC, M&M and ICICI Bank led the losers in the group.
In the broader indices, the BSE small cap index shed 0.6 per cent and the CNX mid cap index lost 0.8 per cent

Most Asian stock markets dropped on Wednesday after US benchmarks plummeted toward 5½-year lows and investors began losing hope that governments can rescue the world's economies from slipping deeper into recession. European markets opened down.
It marked Asia's third day of declines, and followed a sell-off overnight on Wall Street that dragged the major indexes to within a hair's breadth of the multiyear lows they touched in November 2008 after the US credit crunch sent its first shockwaves through global finance. 

However, several markets rebounded late in the session as US futures pointed to a modest recovery on Wall Street.
As President Barack Obama signed America's $787 billion measure to revive the world's largest economy, investors were still faced with a rash of downbeat news about everything from struggling US carmakers to beleaguered banks and slumping business activity.

Among the biggest concerns were the ongoing woes of General Motors Corp. and Chrysler LLC. The companies, which have already gotten billions in government aid, asked for another $22 billion dollars overnight and forecast massive layoffs as the industry staggers. If granted, their requests would bring the total bailout to $39 billion.

Amid the growing evidence of decay, investors are still unconvinced that plans rolled out so far will arrest the steepest slide in the global economy in decades, and want more specifics and bolder measures from policy makers, analysts said.
As trade started in Europe, Britain's FTSE 100 was down 1.4 percent, Germany's DAX lost 1 percent and France's CAC 40 shed 0.7 percent.

In Asia, Japan's Nikkei 225 stock average fell 111.25 points, 1.5 percent, to 7,534.26, its lowest close in nearly four months. Hong Kong's Hang Seng, down almost 2 percent earlier in the day, recovered to gain 70.60 points, or 0.6 percent, to 13,016.00.

South Korea's Kospi was off 1.2 percent at 1,113.19. Markets in Australia, New Zealand and the Philippines also fell, though those in Singapore and Taiwan traded up modestly.
The region's biggest decliner was mainland China, where stocks had risen sharply in recent weeks. 

The Shanghai Composite index plunged 4.7 percent to 2,209.86 amid reports that regulators were investigating the recent surge in bank lending and whether it raised financial risks. Analysts said there was speculation some of the lending was being used to place bets on the stock market.