The News International Team
10:00 am Market check: The market slides further. The Sensex is down 184.92 points or 0.7 percent at 26596.52 and the Nifty slipped 83.65 points or 1 percent at 7983.95. About 469 shares have advanced, 1455 shares declined, and 58 shares are unchanged.
Hindalco and Cipla are down 3 percent each. Sun Pharma, ICICI Bank and Tata Motors are top losers in the Sensex. Tata Steel, TCS, Bajaj Auto, Reliance and HUL are among the gainers.
9:55 am Asian business: Business sentiment among Asia’s top companies rebounded in the fourth quarter to the second-highest level in almost three years, a Thomson Reuters/INSEAD survey showed, helped by a stronger US economy and a plunge in oil prices.
The Thomson Reuters/INSEAD Asian Business Sentiment Index increased to 72 in the fourth quarter from 66 in the previous three months. The result was only slightly below the 74 reading of the second quarter which was the highest since early 2012. A reading above 50 indicates an overall positive outlook.
Indian businesses provided the biggest boost to the index, with companies reporting a maximum score of 100 for the third consecutive quarter as they look to new Prime Minister Narendra Modi to speed up economic recovery.
9:45 pm Profit booking: Profit booking continues in market dragging the Sensex by 138 points or 0.5 percent at 26642.70. The Nifty slips 51.35 points at 8016.25. About 451 shares have advanced, 1316 shares declined, and 44 shares are unchanged.
Hndalco, Cipla, Sun Pharma, Bhari Airtel and Tata Motors are top losers in the Sensex while Tata Steel, Infosys, TCS, ITC and Reliance are major gainers.
9:30 am Tata Steel big relief: The Odisha government has allowed Tata Steel to operate its four iron ore mines in the state till January 28 as per an interim order of the Orissa High Court.
“We have issued permission to Tata Steel to resume operations at its four mines in view of the high court order. The state government will take the final decision on the matter basing on the judgement of the high court on January 28,” Deepak Kumar Mohanty, Director of Mines.
Earlier, the state government had ordered Tata Steel to stop operations at four mines– Bamebari, Katamati, Joda East and Joda West– after the steel major failed to meet the November 15 deadline for forest and environment clearances.
Tata Steel’s six iron ore mines were among the 26 mines which were asked to suspend mining operations in view of a Supreme Court order on May 16 this year.
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The market has opened on a weak note. The Sensex is down 50.39 points at 26731.05, and the Nifty slips 26.40 points at 8041.20. About 263 shares have advanced, 331 shares declined, and 23 shares are unchanged.
M&M, Dr Reddy’s Labs, Bharti Airtel, Cipla and Hindalco are among the laggards. The gainers include Tata Steel, NTPC, Tata Motors, Reliance and BHEL.
The Indian rupee slipped further in the early trade. It has opened lower by 24 paise at 63.77 per dollar versus 63.53 Tuesday. The US dollar slipped against major currencies on expectations that the fed would take a cautious tone on monetary policy, while a slide in oil prices pushed the Russian rouble to new lows and boosted the safe-haven yen.
Pramit Brahmbhatt of Veracity said, “Currency markets will continue to take cues from the equity markets. The rupee is expected to trade rangebound with a slightly negative bias. Range for the USD-INR is seen between 63.20-64/dollar.”
Global cues, meanwhile, are mixed as the US markets fell for the sixth session in seven days on the steep decline seen in oil prices. Investors are keenly awaiting the Federal Reserve’s monthly policy meeting. The focus will remain on whether the fed reiterates its vow to maintain rates low for a considerable period.
Asian markets gained despite a weak close on US markets as Russian markets continued to tumble. European shares too closed sharply higher on Tuesday reversing earlier losses.
In other asset classes, Brent crude prices continued to decline trading below USD 60 dollars per barrel while the Nymex slipped to a fresh 5-and-a-half year lows. The slide in oil prices has pushed the Russian rouble to new lows. The dollar too fell against major currencies.