Sensex down 56 points; oil and gas stocks down

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Mumbai, Dec 16 (IANS) A benchmark index of Indian equities markets ended Monday’s trade 56 points or 0.24 percent down, as inflation data dashed any hopes of the apex bank easing on monetary policy.

The 30-scrip S&P Sensex of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), which opened at 20,714.26 points, closed at 20,659.52 points – down 56.06 points or 0.27 percent from its previous day’s close at 20,715.58 points.

The benchmark touched a high of 20,764.52 intra-day and a low of 20,637.77 points.

The wider 50-scrip S&P CNX Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) closed flat. It ended in negative territory, down 13.70 points or 0.22 percent at 6,237.05 points.

India’s headline inflation based on wholesale prices rose to 7.52 percent in November due to high fuel and food prices, government data showed Monday.

The country’s main inflation measure based on the wholesale price index (WPI) was at seven percent in the previous month against 7.24 percent in the corresponding month of last year, according to data released by the ministry of commerce and industry here Monday.

Food prices jumped by 19.93 percent year-on-year during the month under review. They increased by 18.19 percent in October.

The country’s retail inflation measured in the consumer price index (CPI) for November rose to 11.24 percent as compared to 10.17 percent in the previous month, data released Thursday showed.

India’s retail inflation rose on the back of high food prices. The prices of vegetables were up by 61.60 percent, fruit prices were up 15 percent, cereals and products went up by 12.07 percent and egg, fish and meat rose by 11.96 percent.

The country’s industrial output contracted by 1.8 percent during October — from a year-on-year growth of 8.4 percent in the corresponding month of last year — due to poor performance of the mining and manufacturing sectors.

Good buying was observed in information Technology (IT), consumer durables and technology, entertainment and media (TECk) sectors while heavy selling was observed in oil and gas, automobile and fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) stocks.

The S&P BSE oil and gas index was down 137.61 points followed by automobile index which lost 84.80 points and FMCG index moved down by 31.16 points. However, IT index climbed up by 133.63 points,consumer durables index was 67.28 points and TECk index which gained by 49.31 points.

Major Sensex gainers were: Sesa Sterlite, up 4.54 percent at Rs.200.50; Infosys, up 2.25 percent at Rs.3,449.85; Tatat Power, 1.96 percent at Rs.88.65; Coal India, up 1.18 percent at Rs.286.90; and ICICI Bnak, up 1.10 percent at Rs.1,097.40.

The main losers were: Jindal Steel, down 2.96 percent at Rs.252.05; Sun Pharma, down 2.47 percent at Rs.557; Bharti Airtel, down 2.20 percent at Rs.314; Reliance Industries, down 2.19 percent at Rs.844.40; and Mahindra and Mahindra, down 2.14 percent at Rs.927.85.

Among the Asian markets, Japan’s Nikkei closed 1.62 percent down and China’s Shanghai Composite Index was lower by 1.60 percent, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was down 0.56 percent.

In Europe, London’s FTSE 100 was trading 0.54 percent up, Germany’s DAX Index was higher by 1.29 percent and the French CAC 40 Index lost by 0.86 percent.

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