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Sensex falls again; RIL, Ranbaxy trim losses

Stocks fell again on Tuesday, but gains in index heavyweight RIL and Ranbaxy Laboratories Ltd helped the Sensex stage some recovery in late trading, reports MC Vaijayanthi.
By MC Vaijayanthi | Hindustan Times, Mumbai
UPDATED ON JUN 10, 2008 09:14 PM IST

Indian stocks fell again on Tuesday, but gains in index heavyweight Reliance Industries Ltd and Ranbaxy Laboratories Ltd. helped the Sensex stage some recovery in late trading. The 30-share benchmark index of the Bombay Stock Exchange closed 1.2 per cent lower at 14,889.25 after pulling back from an intraday low of hitting an intra-day low 14,645.31, the lowest this year.

Short covering by one prominent foreign institutional investor that had taken a grim view of the markets on Monday and had to buy to cover their sell positions on Tuesday helped the late rally. It was coupled with some aggressive buying by select institutions.

The 50-share NSE Nifty closed 1.14 per cent lower at 4,449.80.

"Some short term reversal should happen, provided oil prices stabilize at their current levels," said Anita Gandhi, head of institutional business, Arihant Capital Markets.

Earlier in the day, the Sensex was pulled down by Infosys, HDFC, ICICI, ONGC and HDFC Bank. The major gains to the index came from Reliance Industries and Ranbaxy. While pharmaceuticals are in limelight as a defensive play in the current market downturn, real estate is viewed in the most negative terms as it is expected to bear the brunt of slowdown and high interest rates.

In an otherwise gloomy market, a couple of positive long-term outlook came out from a few research teams. Franklin Templeton’s Sukumar Rajah in a note to investors said, "Corporate India's underlying fundamentals remain strong and expect margin moderation to sustainable levels. Earnings growth to be in the range of 15-20 per cent." He feels valuations have turned attractive as India is expected to be one of high growth economies and due to positive demographics and high savings.

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