Rolta dips 18% amid rumours

Written by Markets Bureau | Mumbai | Updated: Jan 15 2009, 04:15am hrs
Jobbers and speculators ran amok on Tuesday and started hammering the mid-cap IT companies like Rolta India and Polaris Software stocks down. What started off initially as a rumour that Rolta India too was involved in not communicating material developments and could possibly be the next Satyam Computers in the making, gathered huge momentum leading to widespread selling.

The stock that opened at Rs 105 on Tuesday was showing weak trends, however, large scale selling by jobbers and speculators led selling after 1.00 pm saw the share price dip to Rs 42.40 levels. Shares of the firm settled at Rs 87.15, down 17.71% over its previous closing on the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE). Several jobbers were seen doing bulk deals on the NSE and the BSE. There were rumours that the companys promoters had pledged their shares and they were being offloaded in the market, said an analyst.

Most of the jobbers sold shares at the Rs 70 to Rs 77 price levels and then bought them back at a slightly lower price. And, since the deals were just a rupee apart, the volumes were high. For example, data from the NSE shows that PRB Securities sold 39 lakh shares at Rs 71.14 and bought a similar amount of shares at Rs 70.82. In the meanwhile, Merrill Lynch also sold 10 lakh shares at Rs 68.41 on the NSE.

However, the management of the company that specialises in geospatial information systems, engineering designs and telecommunication related IT solutions, intervened and clarified that all was well with the company. In a note to the BSE, the management said, There are no new developments that have had any material impact on the companys operations and business.

The Rs 456 crore Rolta has been communicating all material developments to the financial community through its releases and information sent to exchanges the last such event was the acquisition of Piocon Technologies in the last week of December 2008, the statement added. The stock price then caught up and closed at Rs 87.15, registering a loss of 17.71%.

Interestingly, at the same time as Roltas stock started getting hammered, the Polaris Software stock too dropped sharply from Rs 36.15 to Rs 26.30, only to close at Rs 33.50.

Meanwhile, the 30-share Sensex of Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) lost 38.69 points or 0.42% to close the day at 9,071.36 points. Dealers in the markets say that, weak cues from the European and Asian markets and continuous spell of buying and selling in the markets had a negative impact. The broader S&P CNX Nifty of National Stock Exchange (NSE) closed at 2,744 points down by 28.15 points or 1.02%.